I don’t have the energy to keep track of all the principled, intellectually honest responses to that second-rate forgery the White House presented yesterday, but other people are on the job.
Steve M. finds the Washington Times posing the kind of bracing questions that serious journalists too seldom ask:
Mr. Obama’s hostility to openness drives the public’s curiosity about the most basic facts of his life. For example, he has refused to release his college and law-school transcripts, information recent presidential candidates have openly shown the public despite some embarrassment over decades-old bad grades. What is there for this president to hide? Maybe he flunked government classes or got busted for dope. He has openly discussed his past drug use, but is there more to it? Secrecy breeds speculation.
And Wonkette finds a physics PhD (no, really) bringing some much needed scientific perspective to the discussion.
In the Times case, mental illness and/or unbridled hate breeds speculation. Secrecy is just the excuse.
Who knew “Don’t Feed the Trolls” would become a public policy issue?
I’m over quibbling about their basic motivations before the long-form release. It’s all hate and loathing from here on out.
It seems to me that if their assertions were true Sen. John McCain would be the beneficiary but McCain has only said that “[Obama’s] a decent family man, citizen, that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues.”
Why would getting busted for dope be on your college or law school transcript? As for roller ball guy? How the fuck would he be able to tell that from a copy/pdf? I have now wasted waaaayyyyy too much thought on these people.
I’m going to try to translate. Someone tell me if I’m doing this right:
Mr. Obama’s hostility to openness drives the public’s curiosity about the most basic facts of his life.
Durn n****r oughta speak when spoken to.
he has refused to release his college and law-school transcripts
Durn affirmative action baby.
Maybe he flunked government classes or got busted for dope.
Durn shiftless n****rs always lazin’ about.
Have you taken a look at this guy’s Twitter background picture? It’s like he didn’t get the message after the Tucson shooting.
Wasn’t Obama the editor of the Harvard Law Review? I think that means he had pretty good grades.
Amazing that Rollerball (with James Caan) came out in 1975 but the pens a decade later.
Good lord birthers, have you no shame?
No dog whistles, they’re blowin’ fog horns.
Absolutely unbelievable. Absolutely pathetic.
Saw some place on the intertubes that one of the cable news joints put on an illustrious expert afterbirther sleuth who wondered why the doctor who raised him did not remember delivering a future president.
The doctor is dead, but why didn’t he brag to his family about it.
Pretty suspicious, huh? And the doctor is deceased and can’t talk. Pretty darn convenient for the Obama goons, right?
The deceased doctor who delivered Obama passed away in 2003.
I guess I should go find the link, but it is just too much to spend more time on this very harmful nonsense.
It is really ridiculous. Sorry if some of Obama’s straight talk at the news conference hurt our awful mass media’s widdwle feewings yesterday, but the post long form afterbirther phase of this charade is just too much garbage nonsense stupid dumb dimwititude to deal with anymore.
And why does it resonate? ‘Cause there is a racist audience that eats it up. The Donald said that you can sell this stuff to the GOP faithful like hotcakes, they just eat it up (paraphrase). Trump the pitchman is pitch perfect and one hundred percent right about that.
Someone obviously hasn’t heard of ball point pens, which existed waaaay before the 1980’s and wrote the exact same way.
First patent on the ballpoint pen?
Wow, look, I’m a journalist!!
Apparently, this “physicist” has one of those Pepperdine correspondence course “Ph.D.”s that really aren’t worth the paper they are written on:
The first ballpoint pens went on sale at Gimbels department store in New York City on 29 October 1945 for US$9.75 each. This pen was widely known as the rocket in the U.S. into the late 1950s.
That a physics PhD could spew this kind of drivel should surprise no one.
Public respect to the contrary, a PhD does not inoculate you against gullibility or foolishness. In fact, PhDs who make pronouncement outside their narrow area of expertise have no more chance of being correct than some no-neck hillbilly with a third-grade education.
Moreover, I’m not just talking out my ass here. There are a number of scientific studies showing that:
1) “Measures of general basic capacities do not predict success in a domain.” In other words, there’s no evidence that being smart automatically makes you an expert. An expert, studies show, appears to be someone who has engaged in lengthy deliberate practice, not someone who is especially clever or knowledgeable.
2) “The superior performance of experts is often very domain specific and transfer outside their narrow area of expertise is surprisingly limited.” In other words, a PhD in (say) solid state physics doesn’t qualify you to speak about economics, or, for that matter, about climate change.
3) “Systematic differences between experts and less proficient individuals nearly always reflect attributes acquired by the experts during their lengthy training.” Once again, experts aren’t smarter than others…merely more experienced. If someone wants to talk about the alleged authenticity of Obama’s birth certificate, they’d better have 10,000 hours of hands-on experience in identifying document forgeries.
Sunshine bores the daylights out of me.
@BGinCHI: Ha! You think you can get a job at the vaunted Washington Times with “facts” like those?
@Joshua Norton: People wrote only with quill pens up until late 1978. It is a fact.
“Sure is a fancy car there. Who’d you steal it from, boy?”
Same as it ever was.
Look, his college transcripts are a distraction. The real prize are his National Guard service records. I hear there are some juicy details in those!
@Joshua Norton: No, I heard some raving expert babble on a long form afterbirther news alert (sirens!) special report, that it is a little known fact that in Hawaii, long form vault copy certificates of live birth birth certificates had to be written out on palm leaves with quill pens, back in the sixties. With squid ink.
But the sheeples are ignorant and remain deluded.
If only somehow, true information could penetrate the sheeples minds and reveal the great Obama birth deception!
@Omnes Omnibus: Quill pens? Pure luxury! We had to use a whole goose.
@MikeJ: I come from a background of privilege.
So I could aim lower, like WaPo.
Getting into conspiracy thinking is really, really fun. It’s kind of like the feeling I got when I was addicted to the game Rise of Nations 5 years ago……..is that line and artifact? Can I find that smudge on another layer? Which layer is an artifact from Adobe, and which possible evidence?
There are people going through cheetos faster than you can possibly believe right this minute, and they are getting closer to the laughable conclusion. They’re really freaked out right now, though. They think they’ve been set up on purpose, because the certificate is blatantly fake (they have discovered that the PDF is an electronic document, not paper…seriously, they are triumphantly announcing that it’s NOT a true exact copy, but a PDF with evidence of being scanned as a PDF.)
Pfucking hilarious douchebag.
@Omnes Omnibus: Sorry, I missed your comment. You beat me to the quill pen scoop.
Rats! I was going to get on TV and get famous with that angle.
Dr.’s handwriting fairly legible. We know that that was not possible back in 1961.
@BGinCHI: WaPo? Only if you’ll report on the other side of the ballpoint pen invention-year controversy — 1888? 1980? Opinions differ!
But Democrats are always evil and incompetent! You don’t need 10,000 hours of experience to detect and foil their evil commie plots! All you need is a true conservative’s heart!
Demonstrably overqualified and entirely missing the point of the profession.
@jeff: OK, now there I WAS first. Yesterday I pointed out that it was not the vault copy long form, but a copy of the vault copy long form.
What thieving long form afterbirther expert is stealing my insights on cable TV? They owe me money!
Shorter Dr. Brainiac: “You can’t fool me, I’m a moron!”
Let’s go ahead and just cut to the chase:
Obama, innocent of his birth, guilty of his color.
And these people will all cheer their favorite AfAm athletes on Sunday this fall.
@scav: Both sides do it?
Evolved Deep Southerner
When they watch TV, do you reckon they think little miniature people are inside their set doing all the shit they’re watching?
@jl: I am having my teeth whitened right now.
Looks like fountain pen writing to me.
Meanwhile, Jon Stewart (with the assistance of Larry Wilmore) delivered a bouncing baby straw man once again. You see, birtherism has NOTHING to do with racism and anyone who thinks so is a pandering white liberal because 1) Clinton was accused of murder back in the 90s, man and 2) it’s just opportunism and colour-blind scared old people.
I guess Jon’s not up to the nuance of a theory that includes cynical opportunists and ratings-hungry media acting as enablers to racists and kooks. Nope, once opportunism can be identified, there can’t be any racism in the mix.
BTW, rollerball is not the same as ballpoint…
@BGinCHI: Now you’re getting it. Oh, and
@BGinCHI: So long as they’re not uppity and aspire to being quarterbacks. Double Fuckers.
Not stalking, I swear I’m not stalking.
@gordon schumway: Dumbass not the same as dipshit.
why, when I was a boy, we dint have no modern writin’ instruments like rollerball pens or new-fangled ballpoint pens or even any of those fancy feather quills!! No! when I was a boy, we had to sharpen the end of a willow branch, pull our pants down and our fahtha would beat us with until we bled! then we’d dip the sharpened end of the willow branch into the fresh lashes on our buttocks and write with our own blood! And dammit, we liked it!!
Dang! Is he really setting it up as an either-or? Brothers! Sisters! Let’s come together here — the Republicans are opportunist lunatic racist Machiavellian fucks!
Can we have a birther free friday, though. I mean, something like 24 birther free green balloon hours. I don’t care if some randomn asshole tweets or some Texas legislature craps on the rubes who voted for him for 24 hours. We knew that they would do this “raises more questions than it answers” crap, and of course they are doing that. Even if the future Kate Windsor herself tomorrow states “I married Willie because he produced his birth certificate when asked, unlike some people I know…” can we skip it?
@Comrade Javamanphil: I was very surprised to discover that the initial source of the birther claims is Linda Starr who was a Democratic activist who was involved in bringing the Bush TANG story to CBS.
Villago Delenda Est
Given that the author of that article seems to equate Olbermann with Beck, I think we can safely question what the fuck he’s talking about here.
Villago Delenda Est
The stupid. It burns.
@Villago Delenda Est: Yeah, I belatedly realized that about the author. However I think he does have his basic facts straight regarding Linda Starr, other than whether she was the first birther or just an early adapter.
@Villago Delenda Est: OMFG. Did they think the officials in Hawaii were going to rip the original out of the book and mail it to Obama?
A bit of an OT, via The Atlantic’s Chris Good, Schumer refused to criticize Trump. Apparently because he remembers the vulgarian’s father driving his Cadillac in the neighbourhood
I guess Mr. Schumer finds nothing wrong with Mr. Trump’s race-baiting.
@MattR: you both are forgetting his long list of suspicious deaths trailing in his wake. Starting with his birth doctor. Sure he wasn’t as bad as bush, so the DC murder rate dropped 25% in 2009, but there were still some murders. Maybe even some by rollerball pen
Villago Delenda Est
Amazing how Obama’s predecessor’s NG records seem to have, as Pavel Chekov would say, wanished.
Dunno how slipshot the Air National Guard’s personnel record keeping was in the early 70’s, but I know that if you had “unrated” time, even if accounted for in the Army, eyebrows would raise.
@Comrade Mary: As a fountain pen collector, I agree with you. The instant I first saw the signatures, I thought, wow, they still commonly used fountain pens back then. That’s so totally a fountain pen line.
My own birth certificate (Boston, 1960) is clearly all written with a fountain pen (no new-fangled typewriters for me). Looks like it might be India ink.
But hey, I’m sure it will become the conventional wisdom among the afterbirthers that those signatures are all from the same rollerball.
Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason
I think it was in one of Malcolm Swan’s books where I read that the key to expertise is 10,000 hours. Bill Gates had that much programming before he finished high school. In the working world, that’s 5 years of working at the same thing.
From my advanced perspective, that hardly seems “lengthy” (how can they call these whippersnappers Senior Engineers?) but thinking back on my own experience, it seems about right.
ETA: Bugger. I should have read your whole post before I replied. You hit the 10,000 hours in #3. Another Emily Litella moment for BSoSR. :-(
@Anya: Trump also donated $2150 to Schumer/Friends of Schumer in 1999. Chump change in the campaign contribution world but no doubt it’s something that lingers in one’s mind.
@MattR: That doesn’t surprise me. The artists that created the Obama joker poster was a Dennis Kucinich supporter. Most of the smears against the President started during the Dem Primary. Since the republicans are sleazier and their network of right-wing media is vast, they make more impact with their lies but our side is not innocent.
Mr. Mathis appears old enough to have been born in the late 50s; did he spend the 60s and 70s in a coma? Perhaps his parents had religious objections to Bic flicking? Or maybe telling lies ages you prematurely, and he’s really 31?
You’ll go blind.
I know we throw the “PUMA” word around a lot here, but people like Linda Starr are the reason it exists. There is a small coterie of Democrats who absolutely, positively cannot accept that Obama beat Hillary Clinton fairly, and it’s for the same reason that birthers can’t accept that Obama is an American citizen.
No one of Importance
Wait, wait, I know this one.
It’s because he’s tall, isn’t it?
He’s taller than Hillary, so his entire life has been defined by heightist wealth and privilege, and so she would have won if she’d been tall too.
Also, all Kenyans are tall, so all tall people are Kenyans, amirite?
Villago Delenda Est
Obama beat Hillary because Hillary had the most stupid group of political hacks advising her that were assembled since the Dukakis campaign in ’88.
I mean, these guys couldn’t do the basic math of delegates, for the love of Richard Daley.
Hillary has no one to blame but herself for her shitty decisions to hire those clowns, pretty much how John McCain has no one to blame but himself for the failure to vet the Palin bint.
Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason
@No one of Importance: You have nailed it.
You know what other president was tall, who was rejected as a president by a significant portion of the US? Hmmm?
Rollerball pens are different to ballpoint pens, they use a less viscous ink. Rollerball pens date from 1977.
But just why this loon thinks a rollerball pen was used on the 1961 Birth Certificate is something that only he and Ted Kaczynski can tell.
No you’re not. A real journalist would have used an anonymous source.
Youse guys (male and female) are so busy trashing the physics PhD “expert” regarding rolling balls, that you’ve overlooked the single, most obvious and important piece of evidence that the so-called “long form” copy of the copy is, in fact, a FORGERY!
Specifically: the fonts used by the doctor (or, as the forgery calls him, the “Attendant”), and Stanley Ann Dunham Obama, in their signatures, DID NOT EXIST IN THE 1960s!!
It was not until PhotoSlop v. 482, released JUST LAST WEEK, that the fonts used were available to anyone not employed by Abode.
So, once again, you Lieberals, and the lying Demoncrat-controlled media, are trying to put one over on right-thinking Americans.
Could you please cite your source on this? :)
He could, but then he’d never be considered for a (journalism-related) job at the WaPo.
Snarki, child of Loki
Pepperdine? No, Southern Methodist U. The guy
has his resume online.
This is not a shining star of the scientific galaxy.
Now, amazingly enough, Sarah Palin never released academic transcripts from the 4? colleges that she attended in her ultimately successful quest for an undergraduate degree in journalism. Now, perhaps that grades would show why she changed schools so often, but perhaps not. My bet is “boy problems”, which don’t show up directly on a transcript, but CAN show up in medical records.
And Obama was elected U.S. Senator in 2004. See the connection?
Also, too, ball point pens.
@Villago Delenda Est:
Considering he works for the Unification Church, I think it’s safe to question everything in that rag.
@mclaren: Or as I read somewhere, getting graduate degrees means learning more and more about less and less
Our Merkin equivalent of the Shroud of Turin. Next they’ll want radiographic scanning and bits of it for carbon-dating. These people are simply full-goose bozo. Did someone pour LSD in the Merkin water supply?
@No one of Importance: It’s because he’s tall, isn’t it?
Possibly. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heights_of_Presidents_of_the_United_States_and_presidential_candidates and http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/787/does-the-taller-candidate-always-win-the-election.
@Snarki, child of Loki: Wow, shocker, the PhD guy worked for Halliburton.