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Vanity Fair Editor Arrested at Bohemian Grove

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posted on Jul, 16 2008 @ 03:17 PM

Vanity Fair Editor Arrested at Bohemian Grove

Vanity Fair contributing editor Alex Shoumatoff was arrested this week after he tried to sneak in to the world famous Bohemian Grove, the exclusive getaway of some of the world’s most powerful men who gather there every year in July for two weeks. See San Francisco Chronicle’s Matier and Ross column.
(visit the link for the full news article)

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Bohemian Grove 2008

posted on Jul, 16 2008 @ 03:17 PM
Apparently this would have been a fairly big story if the guy could have snuck in. Maybe it still will be. He has a former Grove member as a source.


In the woods: Vanity Fair contributor Alex Shoumatoff faces trespassing charges after apparently trying to sneak into the famous, rich and powerful Bohemian Club's annual retreat over the weekend.
For more than a century, the club has been hosting its secretive summertime retreats up at the 2,700-acre Bohemian Grove.
The party atmosphere, however, has been tempered of late by the club's battle with a fourth-generation member, John "Jock" Hooper, who resigned in 2004 over the Bohemian plan to harvest oak and fir trees from its wilderness.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Jul, 16 2008 @ 03:25 PM
Great Find! editor decides to make an attempt to infiltrate the Bohemian Grove under the direction of a disgruntled ex-member of the Grove.

I am wondering what was expected to be found...especially from a Women's magazine editor...

Incidentally, I know someone who just went up there two weekends ago....

posted on Jul, 16 2008 @ 03:32 PM
Too bad he didnt consult Alex Jones on how to get in and have his camera fall over in his bag. All that lop-sided shaking made me want to puke.

I do, however, applaud this editor for getting arrested and making news. I wonder what "law" he broke.

posted on Jul, 16 2008 @ 03:42 PM
reply to post by MemoryShock

Thanks. I actually found it while trying to get my 'Bohemian Grove 2008' thread together. I decided that in many ways this warranted its own recent news story because it was so hot off the press, so to speak.

I feel that the problem here is exactly what pluckynoonez said in their post. Alex Jones may not be as mainstream, but he does move in a circle that is pretty mainstream, and he could have possibly helped the Vanity Fair editor. But then again, Alex Jones would have blown the Vanity Fair connection up too much to try to gain more credibility.

I think the real issue here with this is the yearly media blackout for all the years, and now this blunt refusal of infiltration. I had always though that the media skirted the Grove issue our of respect of the Bohemian Club, ergo the National Press Club.

This Vanity Fair article is possibly a bit of modern muckraking...

PS... Getting caught blew the cover on the article anyway, even if ALex Jones would have done the same, at least they might have gotten further....

posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 10:34 AM
He seemed out of place at the Grove

Writer/environmental warrior Alex Shoumatoff booked his wife and kids into a Russian River motel Saturday, then drove off to join the merry men inside the Bohemian Grove.

But the New Yorker wasn't invited, not hardly. Shoumatoff is working on a Vanity Fair story critical of attempts by the Bohemian Club to clear some trees from the gorgeous, 2,700-acre camp near Monte Rio alive right now with the midsummer gathering often called the greatest men's party on Earth.

At about 8 p.m., he sneaked into the tightly guarded Grove. When security men confronted him about 90 minutes later, he was asking questions that made Bohemians wonder if he was truly one of them.

Shoumatoff was straight-up with the Sonoma County deputies who arrested him on suspicion of trespassing. He told them he entered the Grove to investigate "how the redwood trees are impacted by the members in the Bohemian Grove."

Apparently, the Vanity Fair article has nothing to do with the ritual side of things, and only to do with the cutting of the Redwoods.

What is crazy, is this seems to be the biggest story about the Grove in mainstream news history...

posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 10:40 AM
One of the saddest perp walk faces I have ever seen. Photo Copyright © 2008


Reports from inside the Bohemian Grove said Shoumatoff initially made it past security by falsely pretending to be a member, using the name of “Roger Austin.” Despite being suspicious of his Pebble Beach attire, Grove security let him pass, but quickly discovered there was no guest with the first name of Roger, but there was an “Austin” at the Grove (no, it wasn’t Austin Powers).

The security team rapidly paced after the lumbering Shoumatoff, who was found cowering behind a Redwood tree, his amble girth giving him away. For those in the know, Bohemians freely urinate against the giant trees, so perhaps Shoumatoff is a bit jaundiced in the aftermath of his poorly planned hiding attempt.

After being detained and handcuffed, Shoumatoff admitted that he was a trespasser. He had a map of the Grove and $20 in his pocket, plus his notes that were confiscated by authorities. Clearly, Vanity Fair doesn’t pay well under editor Graydon Carter. Shoumatoff was arrested by Sonoma County Sheriffs and held on $1,000 bail for trespassing. He was alleged bailed out by his wife, who must make a more decent living than her husband to afford the bail.

They are sending him through the ringer on this...

posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 11:55 AM
For the life of me, I can't understand the fasination with rich men, sacrificing children and worshipping a huge owl. Who cares!!!

They pay their dues to be in BG. Leave em alone!!!

[edit on 17-7-2008 by whaaa]


posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 12:28 PM
they should use an UAV next time...

posted on Jul, 20 2008 @ 06:40 PM
Having known John Hooper for many years, both in his wilderness Society work and also with the Sierra club, it seems regrettable that Bohemian Club members seem to refuse to see that good logging practices are the primary aim of John's present battle.
To be forced to resign from this club was a difficult move, but John Hooper is a man of integrity and possess great knowledge about trees and logging.
I admire his tenacity and hope he prevails.

Pat Black (living in N. CA. but stopping in Portola Valley)

posted on Nov, 24 2008 @ 10:34 AM
Just posting quick point that I just did a search of the Vanity Fair website, and the 'article' never materialized.

Here is an interesting blurb about the incident from wikipedia:

Shoumatoff recently made headlines on July 16/17, 2008, including on the New York Post's Page 6 Gossip Collumn, from a trespassing arrest for attempting to sneak in to the Bohemian Grove, a men's club and 2 week camp in Northern California, while covering a story for Vanity Fair. The club is most-famously known for its combination of unique rituals and a membership list of the nation's and California elite, including former presidents and senior staff administration staff members, famous actors, news anchors, and other notables. Rituals include The Cremation of Care, a mock cremation of a mummy-like corpse that is floated onto a small pond and burned before a 40-foot cement Owl that was captured on film in 2000 by the controversial filmmaker and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, and practices by club members that prompted former President Richard Nixon, who claimed he witnessed homosexual acts[3], to call it "the most faggy goddamned thing you could ever imagine." After the arrest Shoumatoff was hit hard by public relations crisis manager Sam Singer, who was hired by the Grove and who is most-famous for spinning the lethal mauling of an 17-year-old before his two brothers by Tatiana the Tiger, which had escaped from the San Francisco zoo[4]. Singer was able to spin Shoumatoff at online blogs, Conservative internet sites, and small news outlets as "caught in an embarrassing situation," "ungentlemanly," "overweight" (when Shoumatoff is not overwhelmingly overweight at 6' and 230lbs), and "biased," for example in this news article that appeared in the San Francisco Sentinal. However, discrepancies exist including how exactly Shoumatoff was captured and the duration of his visit.[5] The reports claim that he was arrested "trying to sneak in" when it appears that he was there for some time prior to the Cremation of Care ceremony, prompting security guards to ask him his name when he provided a false name that was not on the guest registry. Questions have been raised by Singer, who claimed that Shoumatoff threatened the club earlier while attempting to gain entrance to the club legally prior to the incident, about possible bias. Shoumatoff was alerted to the story by his friend and college classmate, Jock Hooper, a former member of the club who quit in protest over alleged logging activities by the club of its redwood trees which live as long as 2200 years, who Singer who has also spun as "disgruntled." However, Shoumatoff is well known for unbiased reports including most famously in his profile of former Governor of Massachusetts William Weld, whom Shoumatoff also attended school with, in a 1994 article about his race against Senator John Kerry. Shoumatoff is also a senior contributing editor at Vanity Fair, who he has been writing for 22 years, the magazine recently revealed the 35-year old secret identity of Deep Throat. Vanity Fair has stated that they support Shoumatoff in his reporting and his arrest.[6]

It is interesting to note that the writer who was arrested, comes from an Aristocratic family himself, with a bit of a connection to the 'elite' already.

Shoumatoff comes from an old Russian family that goes back dozens of generations. He relates the family history, particularly of his grandparental generation (aristocrats who fled the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917 and made new lives for themselves in America) in his 1982 book, Russian Blood (see part 1 and part 2 of the original New Yorker magazine excepts from 1978). His paternal grandmother, Elizabeth Shoumatoff, became a prominent portrait artist who was most notably painting President Franklin Roosevelt when he collapsed before her with a massive cerebral hemorrhage ending his life and famously escorted his mistress, Lucy Rutherford, away from the scene before the media arrived. Her brother, Andrey Avinoff a "gentleman-in-waiting" to the Tsar at the time of the Russian revolution, and an artist and renowned lepidopterist (immortalized in Vladimir Nabokov’s The Gift), became the director of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh from 1925 to 1945. His paternal grandfather, Leo Shoumatoff, was the business manager of fellow-Russian-emigre Igor Sikorsky's aircraft company, which developed the helicopter and the first passenger airplane. His other grandfather, Boris Adamovitch, who he never knew even though at one point they lived within twenty minutes of each other in New Hampshire, was a colonel in the Empress's cavalry guard. His father, Nicholas Shoumatoff was an industrial and mechanical engineer who designed paper mills around the world, an entomologist, and alpine ecologist who wrote the books Europe’s Mountain Center, and Around the Roof of the World.

The unfinished painting....

Shoumatoff was born into an aristocratic family in tsarist Russia, and emigrated to the United States in 1917, eventually making her home on Long Island. Her extraordinary talent for portraiture brought commissions from some of the most illustrious families in America, Great Britain and Europe. Her clients included members of the Frick, du Pont, Mellon, Woodruff and Firestone families, plus the royal family of Luxembourg. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was sitting for her at Warm Springs, Georgia when he suffered a fatal cerebral hemorrhage on April 12, 1945.When she was working he said that he had "a terrific headache."

Andrey Avinoff (14 February 1884, Tulchin, Volhynia - 16 July 1949, New York City) sometimes referred to as Andrej Nikolajewitsch Avinoff or Andrei Avinoff, was a Russian entomologist and painter who became Director of the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh. He was especially interested in Lepidoptera among many, many other interests. He was the brother of the famous portrait painter Elizabeth Shoumatoff who most-famously was painting Frankin Delano Roosevelt when he died, and was a highly skilled artist himself who usually painted images of flora or fauna, or paintings with deep meanings with themes of religious or apocalyptic nature.
Avinoff, who was from wealthy family while in Russia with ties to nobility, and who served a diplomatic role in the Tsar's court as an "adviser to the Tzar," left Russia after the Revolution. In 1924, he was hired as an assistant curator of entomology at The Carnegie Museum; he was promoted to director of the Museum in 1926 which he remained through 1946. He was also a trustee of the American Museum.

Wow, what an interesting family Alex Shoumatoff comes from. He is also an accomplished author of many well known articles:

Alex Shoumatoff, (born November 4, 1946 in Mount Kisco, New York), is an American writer, known for his literary journalism, nature and environmental writing, and books and magazine pieces about world travels, political and environmental situations and affairs. His byline is sometimes posted from some of the most remote corners of the world. He was a staff writer at The New Yorker magazine, a founding contributing editor of Outside magazine and Condé Nast Traveler, and is a senior contributing editor to Vanity Fair magazine, his main outlet since 1986. He has 10 published books and since 2001 has been the editor of a Web site,, devoted to "documenting and raising awareness about the planet’s rapidly disappearing natural and cultural diversity." Hundreds of pages of his writing since approximately 1970 are posted on the site, as well as his c.v. and biographical information. Career highlights include an article he wrote about the mountain gorilla advocate Diane Fossey eventually became the film Gorillas in the Mist and another film that purchased but never made about the Brazilian rainforest eco-martyr Chico Mendes. Shoumatoff was recently called "the greatest writer in America" by Donald Trump[1] and was also recently called "one of our greatest story tellers" by Graydon Carter, the editor of Vanity Fair. Shoumatoff is arguably the most widely traveled magazine journalist, with the broadest range in subject matter, writing in English.

I find it very compelling that Shoumatoff was there to write an article about the redwoods, and not some of the more 'dramatic' themes that are spun about the Bohemian Grove. I also find very interesting the spin that the Bohemian Grove was able to craft around this incident. With Shoumatoff's connections to both the elite, and the National Press Club, one would think that he would have already been a member of the Bohemian Club or Bohemian Grove.

I would think the membership here at ATS would really be interested in this part of his personal history:

Graduating at 1968 into the turbulence of the late 1960s, Shoumatoff planned on becoming a poet in the great tradition that he had been studying in college, but after hearing the young Dylan’s “Another Side of Bob Dylan,” he decided to become a songwriter. After a brief stint on the Washington Post as a night police reporter, with a draft classification of I-A and having no desire to go to the Vietnam War, he enlisted in an obscure Marine Corps reserve intelligence unit, which trained him to be parachuted behind the Iron Curtain and to melt into the local population.

Alex Shoumatoff is not the schlub that was shown in the media after this incident. But he is apparently not as 'connected' on the west coast, as he is elsewhere.

Shoumatoff was recently called "the greatest writer in America" by Donald Trump


[edit on 24/11/2008 by DocMoreau]

posted on Jul, 16 2012 @ 09:10 PM
reply to post by DocMoreau

Who in the hell attends college to become a friggin Poet? Only those who have no worries about how to make a living!

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