Thanks to posts like this, I get a lot of e-mails about new Barack Obama rumors. The most recent batch have been about Obama's birth certificate. Yes, seriously. In June, responding to rumors that Obama wasn't born in Hawaii, that his middle name wasn't actually Hussein, that his real parents were Kang and Kodos, etc, Obama's campaign put out a birth certificate reproduction. It was supposed to end the speculation. Instead, it spawned a tiny army of online "sleuths" who poked and prodded this mid-sized jpeg looking for evidence of forgery.
AJ Strata (via Charles Johnson) has done everybody a favor and debunked the rumors. He claims it took him "30 minutes," and if so that's a fraction of the time spent by the people who've tried to convince me of a joint conspiracy by the Hawaiian government, the state department, and the programmers at Adobe. The wackiest stuff appeared on—yes!—the home page of Larry Johnson, pied piper of the "whitey tape" rumor.
Sadly, there are still people falling for this stuff. I only dug back into the blogs when Andy McCarthy, a National Review contributor, mind-melded with the birth certificate truthers.
Our Jim Geraghty seemed to pooh-pooh the birth certificate controversy about a week ago, but according to the above cited report (at a site called DougRoss@Journal) and a new one from Israeli Insider, there are new developments, and the Obama campaign appears to be stonewalling. Shouldn't it be a fairly easy matter to prove he was born in Hawaii if he really was? Why wouldn't Obama just end this quickly?
Jeez, probably the same reason Andy McCarthy won't respond to the allegations that he kidnapped the Lindbergh baby. Seriously, what is it about Obama that induces this Flowers for Algernon IQ dip on the right and in the Hillary Clinton insurgency? This stuff is on the fringe, but sometime reason contributor and Politico editor David Mark has a story out about conservative activists digging into Obama's audiobooks to find incidents of him cursing and quoting a Jeremiah Wright sermon. But… why? Because George Allen's offensive against Jim Webb's novels was so damn effective?
Start your day with Reason. Get a daily brief of the most important stories and trends every weekday morning when you subscribe to Reason Roundup.