Once More, Into the Fever Swamps!

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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?

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  1. AJ Strata (via Charles Johnson) has done everybody a favor and debunked the rumors.

    Is that the Charles Johnson who runs Little Green Footballs?

  2. Is that the Charles Johnson who runs Little Green Footballs?

    Yes. Johnson has rolled his eyes at this and the “whitey tape.” I’m sure, given his role in exposing “Rathergate,” that he gets more of this stupid shit than anyone on the planet.

  3. Mr. Weigel,

    Um, not sure if the addendum was posted at the time that you read the NR item you link to, but this is up there now:

    Is there anything to this?

    ADDENDUM: I should add to the above that I am not a conspiracy theorist. My predisposition on the many stories floating around about Obama and his circle is to ignore them on the following theory: If there was really anything to this or that, the Clintons would have found it and gotten their media friends all over it. This story about Obama’s eligibility puzzles me because (a) it is so basic, (b) it should be so easy to prove the relevant facts of his birth, (c) the Obama campaign’s response to the story is bizarre, and (d) it seems to be getting worse rather than resolved.

    Seems to add a bit of context.

  4. Me: I too agree with you, David, that these silly rumors do not even rise to the level of nonsense that needs to be refuted.

  5. Flowers for Algernon IQ dip”

    NICE.

  6. “Rathergate” was a big deal that had lots of the “right” elements. It had media celebrities (Dan Rather), forgeries, liars, and absurd stuff like the memo looking exactly like modern Word.

    It was a tremendously good time for Bush supporters and they got to deal a massive blow to hated CBS, Dan Rather, and others.

    They all want another one of these scandals. However, the less insane ones realize that the birth certificate isn’t it, while the more insane ones just want it so bad that they’re willing to be idiots.

    Thus, you get die-hards pursuing it, just like there are still people on the left who are convinced the Bush NG memos were real.

    I myself want another Spitzer-type scandal. I just wish I was crazy enough to think that Chuck Schumer is next.

  7. Fringe stuff. Does the other 99% of the electorate care? I doubt it.

  8. Not even Andrew McCarthy is stupid enough to find that “IsraeliInsider” article credible.

    Therefore, I am forced to conclude that Mr. McCarthy is pretending to find it credible merely because he is a dishonest person who does not mind passing crap he doesn’t believe along, if it helps achieve some purpose of his.

    For those of you who haven’t RTFA, the “IsraeliInsider” article says:

    1. A blogger was able to forge a Hawaii birth certificate image.

    2. Therefore, this means that Obama’s birth certificate is forged.

    Essentially, this argument takes the form:

    1. Mister X counterfeited a dollar bill.

    2. Therefore, all money is counterfeit and no real money exists anywhere.

    This is the kind of nonsense that McCarthy thinks justifies keeping the story alive.

  9. Therefore, all money is counterfeit and no real money exists anywhere.

    Bad example, if we’re talking about US dollars, since that’s kinda true.

  10. But… why?

    My guess is because they know that after eight years of Bush, it’s going to take something like a silver bullet to get their guy elected.

  11. “…it’s going to take something like a silver bullet to get their guy elected.”

    Stop the presses!!! Obama’s a vampire!!!

  12. Yawn . . .

  13. Obama’s a vampire!

    Probably not, but his wife…? We just might get the scariest first lady since Eleanor Roosevelt.

  14. “I just wish I was crazy enough to think that Chuck Schumer is next.”

    from your lips to zog’s ears, my man.

  15. Obama hates America!
    Or at least, that’s what I heard.

  16. If Karl Rove gets the credit for covertly inspiring sll the wacky stuff libs and the MSM did the past 7 years can we blame Hillary for current Obama-derangement of some Republicans?

  17. “…it’s going to take something like a silver bullet to get their guy elected.”

    Stop the presses!!! Obama’s a vampire!!!

    Silver bullets are used on werewolves, not vampires. You fail at monster lore.

  18. Its the wingnuts who thrive on this nonsense – the Dems don’t seem to have the grip-till-dead instinct. Maybe they are catching on though.

    When Senator Rick Santorum brought his wife’s dead fetus home to “meet” his other children that should have been evidence to any sane person that Santorum was completely looney. But the Dems let the story lie fallow.

    Reportedly, McCain was quoted on a ’60 Minutes’ interview as saying, “I am a war criminal. I killed innocent women and children”. If a Dem had said that it would be looping continuously on Fox News 24/7.

  19. Here I go again: Hillary didn’t expose anything on Obama because he’s their guy, not that the birth certificate conspiracy has any basis in truth. In fact, the Clintons, masters of Identity Politics that they are, entered three candidates in the race. A woman, a black, and an hispanic. If Richardson makes VP, the Clintons could be looking at 16 more years in power.

  20. Well, given the difficulty of distinguishing McCain from Obama on a whole host of issues, it’s hard to resort to attacks on positions, isn’t it? All you’ve got left is bizarre ad hominems since nobody on the right wants to come out and just yell “Commie Nigger!”

    Well, except maybe Ann Coulter.

  21. For some reason, I had never read Flowers for Algernon. I bought it and a few other sci-fi classics for my summer, sitting on the deck drinking bourbon, reading. (Dont worry, you didnt give anything away, I was well spoilered before starting it)

    Anyway, I was thinking over the weekend that reading the initial progris reportz wasnt hard. It didnt seem like someone retarded, it seemed like a typical blog post.

    Um, okay. Maybe those are one and the same.

  22. I’m a feature film visual effects artist. I’ve worked at some of the biggest facilities in the industry, including Industrial Light + Magic. I digiatally manipulate images for a living, often times so well that the viewer has no idea whatsoever that any manipulation has taken place.

    Reading these conspiracy theories is a never-ending source of entertainment. It’s like twelve retards who downloaded Photoshop from Pirate Bay and like to pretend they actually know what they’re talking about. Individual debunking of these morons is not worth my time.

    They will see what they want to see.

  23. T,

    When did you ever read anything Ann Coulter ever wrote that contained the axaggeration that you are implying toward her?

    Not even Pat Buchanan would blurt out something like that.

    Don Imus, yes. Maybe you are all confused today.

  24. ADDENDUM: I should add to the above that I am not a conspiracy theorist. My predisposition on the many stories floating around about Obama and his circle is to ignore them on the following theory: If there was really anything to this or that, the Clintons would have found it and gotten their media friends all over it. This story about Obama’s eligibility puzzles me because (a) it is so basic, (b) it should be so easy to prove the relevant facts of his birth, (c) the Obama campaign’s response to the story is bizarre, and (d) it seems to be getting worse rather than resolved.

    Guy,

    That addendum is idiotic. The Obama campaign posted a copy of the birth certificate on their website. Which handles issues a, b and c. He’s being deliberately obtuse and just enjoying spreading false rumors. Seriously, how do you end something like this easily? Look at the existence of truthers.

  25. Republican operative:

    Here’s the situation. The economy is going in the shitter. Most people believe the war in Iraq was a dumbshit mistake, we no longer have credibility with small government conservatives and our nominee is almost as exciting as Bob Dole.

    Another Republican operative:

    Ooh, ooh, I know! Let’s make up a bunch of scurrilous rumors and spread them all over the internet. If we throw enough mud, some of it might stick.

  26. “Silver bullets are used on werewolves, not vampires.”

    That’s what the vampires like Obama want you to think. This goes all the way to the top, and it’s not going to be pretty when the house of cards falls.

  27. What Kos posted wouldn’t stand up in a court of law. It’s a bad image of a **certification** that doesn’t appear to contain the required seal. That certification is different from a newly-issued **certificate** or the original.

    That said, I look forward to Weigel going to a BHO appearance and asking him about real issues like this, this, or this and then posting his response to reason.tv.

    An extraordinarily effective way to reduce a candidate’s chances is by asking them real questions, the kind the MSM won’t ask. If someone has access and won’t ask questions, or has something like reason.tv and won’t take advantage of it, they’re just blowing smoke about their interest in covering real issues.

  28. robc-
    make sure you just read the short story; not the abomination that was the novelization. Even if you know the plot, it’s the style that makes it one of the best short stories ever written.

    And, just sayin’, didn’t Charlie and Algernon have their IQ’s enhanced? (albeit, at some long term cost)

  29. And, just sayin’, didn’t Charlie and Algernon have their IQ’s enhanced? (albeit, at some long term cost)

    They came back down.

  30. Kolohe,

    Im reading the novel (Im to the point where he has explained the theory that his gains will crash but it hasnt started happening yet). I am curious as to the bits that got added on. Im guessing the Fay sub plot, for one.

    Reverse the situation for “Beggars in Spain”. I have read the novella and wonder what got added on for a novel, or does the novel continue where the novella left off?

  31. lonwacko-
    so you are retreating from this:

    …the truth: Sen. Barack Obama, born in Hawaii, is a Christian family man with a track record of public service.

    What Saslow identifies as the “truth” has not been proven. It’s certainly extremely likely that BHO was born in Hawaii, but the recent birth certificate issue shows that that is still an open question. Yet, Saslow calls that the “truth”, and Saslow is therefore lying. Further, while BHO does practice the Christian religion that doesn’t rule out him being, having been, or being considered by some to still be a Muslim. What religion someone practices can be proven, but what religion they actually are is something only they can tell. That’s certainly a fine point, but one that credible reporters would make. Likewise with the gay rumor: Larry Sinclair’s charges have not been disproven, they’re just very highly unlikely.

    http://lonewacko.com/blog/archives/007788.html

    or are these still ‘real concerns’ which require ‘real questions?’

  32. Kolohe,
    Wait, you went through the FeveredSwamps of the LWB to find InternalContradictions? You are a BraverManThanI.

  33. am curious as to the bits that got added on.

    Everything where he basically lives as a smart guy for a while is completely new. I think the rest of the augmentation was just padding of various story elements. The short story is only some 20-25 pages long.

  34. Episiarch,

    Wrong response. You should’ve said, “No, Rosenberg, that is a werewolf.”

  35. Mo-
    nah, lonewacko’s place is only like a fell isengard. Now for true bravery, it’s sugarfree, who goes to the darkest depths of mordor to try to meet a girl so fair.

  36. Wait, wait, wait: Barack Obama’s middle name is Hussein?

    I thought that was just a right-wing smear, and that he had no middle name.

  37. Even adjusting for the fact that Reason is located in a different universe from the rest of us, I have trouble locating any contradiction between the comment I left above and this post.

  38. My favorite theory is that Obama’s middle name was really Mohammed, and he changed it.

    You see, he realized that having the middle name “Mohammed” would be a political liability, so he decided to change it to something innocuous. And came up with “Hussein.”

  39. Even adjusting for the fact that Reason is located in a different universe from the rest of us

    Cripes, LoneWacko, how many of you are in there?

    Can I talk to Sybil now?

  40. Andy McCarthy is a the prototypical right-wing fucktard. By that I mean he is quite intelligent by conventional standards, but is willing to swallow just about any shit tossed his way if it furthers his partisan agenda. I mean, Christ, quoting “Israeli Insider”–why not just rely on Debbie Schlussel?

    NRO is so embarrassing nowadays. Now I know why they are afraid to have a comment section (unlike this site)–they would actually have to account for the utter nonsense they spout. That would be a 24/7/365 endeavor–and that would be required to cover the odious “K-Lo” alone, who must have pictures of Rich Lowry or someone else acting inappropriately with boy scouts.

  41. K-lo’s one-handed typing on Flight Suit Day was, in my opinion, one of the most impressive feats ever performed on the World Wide Web.

    It’s all about the bulge, you know. We’re gonna be seeing that footage in campaign ads!

  42. I used to think the ability for anyone to get a website cheap and easy was great. I’m not so sure anymore: http://www.birthcertificatenow.com/

  43. I used to think the ability for anyone to get a website cheap and easy was great. I’m not so sure anymore: http://www.birthcertificatenow.com/

    Thanks for the link. I visited the site and even signed the petition.

    I signed it as
    “This is Retarded”

  44. I’ve read a certain amount of LGF over the years, though less and less as the years have gone by. I’ve left some comments there too, though mostly in the vein of: “I dislike the bad Muslims as much as you, but maybe a few of them are OK” and “While I will support Israel unto my dying breath, the settlements do pose a bit of a problem.” The commenters there really are insane, when taken as a whole. And I am not one to say that lightly.

    That said, Johnson himself was absolutely right about the memos. His simple superimposition of the memos with the same text typed using the default settings of Word was probably the most interesting thing to have ever come from blogs.

    Part of what made it interesting was that a number of “typographic experts” had the sack to claim that that proved nothing… that is what is known as obstreperous temerity in the streetwise circles I run in.

  45. Silver bullets are used on werewolves, not vampires. You fail at monster lore.

    Incorrect. Silver is also used on t3h Vampires.[1][2]

    [1] Dracula 2000

    [2]http://tomatofaerie.blogspot.com/2007/01/concerning-vampires.html

  46. Making it unclear as to whether Obama is lycan or vampire, of course.

  47. Isn’t silver used in both The Lost Boys and An American Werewolf in London, a vampire and a werewolf movie, respectively?

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