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Mystery black man invades photos

You saw it first in Hawaii. A mysterious black man, apparently invisible except for his hand, invaded a family photo of Ann Dunham and her son Barack Obama. You’ve seen it before:

Now he’s back, only with Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush in this official campaign photo!

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H/t to gorefan.

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The legal significance of Obama’s birth certificate PDF

Computer scientist David Kriesel concludes that using the PDF file of Obama’s birth certificate in court is problematic because the Xerox 7655 does pattern matching to replace parts of the image with similar things from other parts of the image, thereby not creating a 100% true copy. In fact, these machines have been known to replace one character with another!

Birthers, of course, conclude that human forgery is the cause of the quirks in the PDF document rather than an algorithmic process.

This fascinating story of how a corporate giant deals with errors in its software is seasoned with actual images from Obama’s birth certificate (and even a shout out to Reality Check’s blog).

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Joshua Bender has never been to Florida, or so he says

Joshua Bender is an attorney for the ACLU who is one of the attorneys who is prosecuting the case of Melendres v. Arpaio in Arizona. Dennis Montgomery is suing Joshua Bender, the ACLU, et al. for defamation; the lawsuit is filed in Florida where Montgomery lives, along with his attorney Larry Klayman (presumably not together), or so the suit alleges.

This article’s title was inspired by the declaration of Mr. Bender in the Dennis Montgomery v. ACLU lawsuit, which seems intended to provide support for a claim that the Florida court lacks jurisdiction over him. Mr. Bender’s declaration was filed along with a motion to dismiss for “lack of personal jurisdiction, improper venue, and failure to state a claim.”1 The ACLU has requested that oral arguments be heard.

The defamation claim rests on the fact that an ACLU attorney (not Bender) used the phrase “con man” referring to Montgomery to a New York Times reporter who subsequently published it. The ACLU plays the opening Google/Wikipedia defense, saying:

The very first hit on a Google search for the plaintiff “Dennis Montgomery” is a Wikipedia entry quoting his own attorney as calling him a “con artist” and “habitual liar engaged in fraud” …

In the meantime, Joshua Bender has petitioned the Court in Phoenix to withdraw from the Melendres case.

For background on the lawsuit, see my article: “Montgomery sues ACLU.”


1We learn in the ACLU motion that Michael German is not an attorney, a point in question in the discussion of my previous article.

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Close the door behind you

I think it worth highlighting an article at Think Progress titled: “How Many Candidates Have ‘Taken  Advantage’ of Birthright Citizenship, but Oppose It?

The article talks about the usual subjects, Cruz, Rubio, Jindal and Santorum. What’s interesting is some others mentioned, including Ben Carson because without the 14th Amendment (or a reversal of the Dred Scott decision) Dr. Carson would not even be a citizen of the United States today. They even take a swipe at Donald Trump.

Read more:

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Digital analysis of birther image

Four years ago I published an image of the birther named Donald Trump, and labeled it: Donald Trump’s "presidential timber." You can see Trump making a face that looks to me like he is beginning to say a word beginning with “F” and has a finger extended.

At the time, I thought that Mr. Trump was extending his middle finger in a gesture widely associated with a word that begins with the letter “F,” but since then I have performed an analysis of the finger (a “digital” analysis if you will) and arrived at a different conclusion.

Before presenting the analysis, I present a word on terminology used in this article:

Image credit: somewhere on the Internet

Using Google image search, I was able to locate a higher-resolution version of the Trump image at Salon.com.

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Here it is clear that the middle finger is in front of the extended finger, meaning that the extended finger is the index finger. It may be that the “F” word being spoken is “Fired” as in the trademark Trump phrase, “You’re fired!”

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How do you get your ex-boyfriend in trouble?

You mail an envelope containing cornstarch to the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office and put his return address on the envelope.

Only it didn’t quite work out that way. It was previously reported that the MCSO went into lock down Friday when the white-powder-filled envelope was discovered (later reports said that only one floor of the building was evacuated), but it isn’t the ex-boyfriend who is under arrest, but the ex-girlfriend, who has confessed to the prank under threat of being forced to watch the Cold Case Posse’s second press conference repeatedly until she did. Read more at ABC News 15.

This incident reminds me of another where an inoperable black powder bomb was mailed to the sheriff in an attempt to cause trouble for a former business partner. Here’s that story.

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