By J. H. Hatfield
of Recalled Bush Biography Apparent Suicide
By Steve Barnes
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Reuters) - James Howard
Hatfield, whose biography of President Bush
won national attention before its publisher withdrew it over the author's criminal past, died in an
Arkansas motel in what police on Friday called a suicide.
Police said Hatfield, 43, died of an apparent
drug overdose. His body was found by a maid on
Wednesday, the day after he checked into the motel in Springdale, near his native Bentonville
and about 200 miles northwest of Little Rock.
Detective Sgt. Mike Shriver of the Springdale PD said there was no question it was a suicide.
``He left a note and everything,'' Shriver said of Hatfield. ''It's really cut and dried.''
Hatfield's unauthorized biography, ``Fortunate
Son: George W. Bush and the Making of an American
President,'' made headlines in October1999 when Bush was campaigning for the Republican presidential
nomination, with allegations based on unnamed sources that Bush had a record of cocaine use in the 1970s.
Bush declined to comment directly on the
cocaine allegations, saying only that he had made mistakes in his
youth but had not used illegal drugs since at least 1974. No witnesses came forward to support the allegations.
Bush's father denied the book's allegations
that his son was arrested for cocaine possession in 1972 and that
a Texas state judge wiped the arrest off the younger Bush's record in return for political favors.
Hatfield's credibility was quickly called
into question and publisher St. Martin's Press recalled all unsold copies
after revelations that Hatfield had pleaded guilty in 1988 and served time in Arkansas for attempted murder.
Hatfield denied he was the ex-convict with the same name, but Arkansas parole officials said he was the same man.
Shriver said Hatfield had checked into
the motel the night before his body was found. He said a suicide note near
the body referred to financial problems, and that friends had told investigators Hatfield was becoming increasingly
depressed in his last days. Hatfield lived in nearby Bentonville, where he was born.
Shriver said prescription drug bottles
were found at the scene, but declined to identify the pharmaceuticals pending
a toxicology report from the Arkansas medical examiner that could require three months to complete.
The people, Florida included, voted for Gore.
What we got, instead, was Governor Weak & Stupid.
Subject: JH Hatfield
i was truly saddenned by the news of jh hatfield's death;
i met him this past june at a panel discussion
put on by soft skull press at quimby's bookstore in chicago,
and he seemed like a very nice, and knowledgeable man. the topic of the discussion was to be media
manipulation and public dissent, one of which there is too much, the other too little;
the actual discussion, however was mostly
centered on the re-release of Hatfield's book "Fortunate Son".
the book included a forward by the new publisher, Sander Hicks, founder of soft skull, that reveals
and the subsequent cover-up. JH told his story
about how it happened, and admitted himself, for the first time
in public, that it was indeed Rove, and Clay Johnson who had given him most of the details of the arrest.
JH Hatfield was a very personable man, and if
they do a movie about his story, billy bob thorton could play him
in a minute. he has the same voice, the same southern charm, and a vey similar look.
here i am with him at the discussion:
Drunken, slow-witted mama's boy, never did a day's work in his life.
Three convictions (minimum) but the press refuses to ask.
Subject: Hatfield "Suicide" Etc.
Hey, Bartcop --
Wow. That's pretty startling news about the death
of James Hatfield, and very convenient.
What strikes me, of course, was that it happened in a hotel room. What that says to me is simple:
everyone knows a dead body in a hotel room will be found the next morning.
A dead body in a living room may sit for days or weeks.
Obviously, there are two possibilities -- homicide
and suicide. I won't touch the first, but if it were
a suicide, the motive is sitting right in the many news stories you reprinted. Every one of them,
of course, mentions Hatfield's book and the controversial bit about the covered-up cocaine arrest.
Assuming that he really was on medication for depression, is it possible that he came to think this
was the only way to get this story into the mainstream press and perhaps get people to read the book?
Kill himself, make sure his body is found, perhaps
also knowing that conspiracy theories will abound
at the same time? Hell, even Drudge mentions the story, although the version he links to is very brief
and only says "The unauthorized biography accused Bush of covering up a cocaine arrest."
Heavy sigh. If only Hatfield had not fallen into
the trap, and just said to the reporters in the first place,
"Yeah, I was arrested in Dallas. So?" And the big argument against my theory are the reporters themselves.
Having been screwed by them once, would Hatfield trust them posthumously to do what he had hoped?
Maybe, maybe not.
Still, it's one of those things that makes you go, "Hm..."
Jon, some people say he was picked to tell the story because he had
and the whore press could use that as "proof" the cocaine charges were bogus.
But the TRUTH is,
We KNOW Bush did community service, but the press refuses to ask, "for
When reporters asked Bush, after news of his third conviction (the DUI) was revealed,
if three was the TOTAL number of arrests for him, Karen Hughes interrupted and barked,
"THIS INTERVIEW IS OVER!" which means there's AT LEAST one more conviction,
because you don't get community service for suspected wrongdoing.
...and the obedient press never brought it up again.
Meanwhile, Bill Clinton, the most immoral and corrupt
man who ever lived, (just ask Maureen Dowd,
or Cokie Roberts) has never been arrested, not even once, much less convicted four times.
He went AWOL during wartime.
Until the summer of 2000, that was considered a crime.
Subject: Hatfield Story Gets Little Play
Don't you find it interesting that this story
is being effectively buried?
I've only found this story on the wires in Dallas.
I couldn't find it in any of the major outlets
such as the NYWT or the Wash Post.
If it was there it's either disappeared or is buried way back in the AP Wire dispatches from the wee hours.
I can't find it anywhere else. It's pretty creepy:
Dave, it's clearer than Lake Concha:
Karl Rove doesn't want the story to be covered,
and the obedient Washington press says, "Yes Sir, whatever you say, Mr. Rove."
America doesn't have a free press.
Those who speak up are blackballed (Robert Parry) or eliminated (James Hatfield).
He didn't even get elected.
He was appointed by his rich daddy's crooked appointees.
Some folks are born made
to wave the flag,
Ooh, they're red, white and blue.
And when the band plays "Hail to the chief",
Ooh, they point the cannon at you, Lord,
It ain't me, it ain't
me, I ain't no president's son, son.
It ain't me, it ain't me; I ain't no fortunate one, no,
Some folks are born silver spoon in hand,
Lord, don't they help themselves, oh.
But when the taxman comes to the door,
Lord, the house looks like a rummage sale, yes,
It ain't me, it ain't
me, I ain't no millionaire's son, no.
It ain't me, it ain't me; I ain't no fortunate one, no.
Some folks inherit star
Ooh, they send you down to war, Lord,
And when you ask them, "How much should we give?"
Ooh, they only answer More! more! more! yoh,
It ain't me, it ain't
me, I ain't no military son, son.
It ain't me, it ain't me; I ain't no fortunate one, one.
Subject: Hatfield's "Suicide"
It's quite clear that criticizing the Bush
Family Evil Empire not only has
career-threatening implications, but life-threatening implications as well.
I wonder if Vince Bugliosi or Alan Dershowitz are a little jumpy today?
I know you don't give it too much credibility,
but the Bush Body Count seems to show no signs of abatement.
By the way, if anybody thinks that ex-CIA
operatives, still in the 'employ' of Poppy and his cohorts,
can't stage a 'suicide', well, I've got some Florida beachfront property to sell them.
I don't want to promote a "death list," but with the CIA, who
Is there anything the CIA can't do?
With just defense contractors, think of the hundreds
that will or won't be made depending on who is president.
Star Wars, alone, is worth eliminating a loose end like Hatfield.
You think those military types don't play hardball?
If/when that cocaine bust mug shot of Smirk's surfaces, it could
turn the 2004 election.
They say Hatfield had three sources on the coke bust.
I wonder who has those names, and if they're still alive?
I think everyone should buy a copy of Fortunate Son before Scalia makes it illegal or
Soft Skull press has a fire and "all copies" are destroyed.
Here to order Fortunate Son from amazon.com (It's
only $13 plus shipping)
It's Steve Kangas all over again.
of Bush book killed self, police say
Records showing felony led to biography recall
SPRINGDALE, Ark. – The author of a book about George W. Bush has killed himself, police said.
James Howard Hatfield, 43, wrote Fortunate
Son: George W. Bush and the Making of an American President in 1999.
The unauthorized biography accused Mr. Bush of covering up a cocaine arrest. But during interviews about the book,
Mr. Hatfield lied to reporters about his own criminal past.
A hotel housekeeper discovered the man's
body about noon Wednesday, Springdale police Detective Al Barrios said.
Detective Barrios said the man apparently overdosed on two kinds of prescription drugs.
Police don't suspect foul play.
Mr. Hatfield had denied to reporters that
he was the same man convicted in Dallas of hiring a hit man for a failed
attempt to kill his employer with a car bomb in 1987. But state and Dallas County criminal records showed and a
parole officer confirmed that he was convicted of solicitation of capital murder, served five years of a 15-year
sentence in a Texas prison and was paroled in 1993. He maintained that it was a case of mistaken identity.
His parole would have ended in April 2003.
In the book, Hatfield quoted three anonymous
sources saying that Bush was arrested for cocaine
possession but that Bush's father arranged for the charges to be dropped and expunged. The Bushes
and Houston courthouse officials from that era denounced the account as false.
"There ought to be limits to freedom."
-- The Failure in Thief, trying to silence his critics
SPRINGDALE -- The Bentonville man who attracted national attention
with his unauthorized biography
of George W. Bush committed suicide Wednesday, police said.
James Howard Hatfield, 43, wrote Fortunate Son: George W. Bush
and the Making of an American President,
in 1999. The book accused Bush of covering up a cocaine arrest. Hatfield's cover-up of his own criminal past
overshadowed the book subject, however, when the author's publisher recalled all 70,000 copies shortly after
A hotel housekeeper discovered Hatfield's body about noon Wednesday
in a room at the Days Inn, Springdale
police detective Al Barrios said Thursday. He apparently overdosed on two different types of prescription drugs,
Barrios said, one normally taken for pain and one usually taken for depression. He said toxicology tests aren't
complete, so the cause of death isn't officially known. Barrios wouldn't identify the drugs or the reason they
had been prescribed, saying he needed to confirm the information with Hatfield's doctor.
Police don't suspect foul play, Barrios said. The suicide was "well-staged,"
with notes to loved ones and
phone numbers for police to call for notification, he said.
He said Hatfield checked into the hotel, on West Sunset Avenue, on Tuesday
night. The housekeeper
discovered his body clothed, lying on the bed, and called police.
In his book, Hatfield accused Bush, who at the time was the Republican
presidential front-runner, of covering up
a 1972 cocaine arrest with the help of his father. But during interviews about the book, Hatfield lied to reporters
about his own 1988 conviction for an attempt to kill a co-worker. Court records show that Hatfield paid another
man $5,000 to plant a bomb in a former co-worker's car.
Hatfield's book about Bush was supposed to be published in January 2000,
but St. Martin's Press moved up the
date to fall of 1999 after Hatfield turned in a manuscript containing the cocaine allegation. The publisher pulled
the book from store shelves in October 1999 after Hatfield's background became public.
Hatfield found a new publisher, Soft Skull Press, which republished
the book a few months later. In a February
2000 interview with the Benton County Daily Record, Hatfield said he wanted to move on with his life.
"I have a wonderful wife, the best wife in the world, and a new baby. We want to put all this behind us."
A 1976 graduate of Bentonville High School, Hatfield was a self-employed
writer and had published other books.
He is survived by his wife, Nancy Hatfield; their daughter, Haley Hatfield; his father, Ralph Hatfield of Bentonville;
and two brothers.
This article was published on Friday, July 20, 2001
Author of Bush biography commits "suicide"
SPRINGDALE, Ark. (AP) - The author of a book critical of George W. Bush has killed himself, police said.
James Hatfield, 43, wrote Fortunate Son: George W. Bush and the making of an American President in 1999.
The unauthorized biography accused Bush
of covering up a cocaine arrest. But during interviews about the book,
Hatfield lied to reporters about his own criminal past, giving the whore press an excuse to follow Rove's orders
to not print anything critical of the appointed boy king.
A hotel housekeeper discovered the man's
body about noon Wednesday, Springdale police Detective
Al Barrios said Thursday. Barrios said the man apparently overdosed on two kinds of prescription drugs.
Police don't suspect foul play.
Of course they don't.
Hatfield was causing problems for the son of a lifelong CIA boss.
Why would the police suspect foul play in his murder?
Read the Previous Issue
It had everything.
Copyright © 2001,
Thanks for the fumble, Dude.