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The circus is back in town

Photo of Donald Trump with clown noseThe carnival barker is back with more nonsense about Barack Obama.

In the wake of Mitt Romney’s continued refusal to disclose tax records that could shed light on his claims that his business career makes him fit to become President, Donald Trump suggests that Obama trade his college admission (and other) records for the Romney tax returns. That’s silly in my estimation, but political maneuvering is not what I comment on here. What does warrant comment is his wild assertion:

You know, Obama spent over $4 million in legal fees to keep these things quiet

In fact, Obama hasn’t spent anything I can find to keep any document quiet1. In the few lawsuits Obama has defended, there were issues beyond release of records and releasing records could not have resolved anything. Most lawsuits were quickly resolved with a simple motion to dismiss and the $4 million number is absurd. Further, the release of Obama’s long form birth certificate in 2011 should dispel any idea that his releasing records satisfies anyone and would stem the flood of frivolous allegations made in the form of a lawsuit.


1One might count one motion to quash a subpoena while a motion to dismiss was pending, but in that case Obama’s attorney Frederic Woocher was acting pro bono (no fee).

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83 Responses to The circus is back in town

  1. avatar
    Scientist August 7, 2012 at 9:54 am #

    Since Obama has released at least 10 years of taxes and Mitt has released 1 + an estimate for 2011, Donald, who wrote a book called “The Art of the Deal” knows better. When Mitt releases 8 more years of returns PLUS his college records, then it would be reasonable for Obama to release his college records.

    Of course, Donald is not in a position to release either guy’s records, so he is just blowing smoke.

  2. avatar
    john August 7, 2012 at 10:03 am #

    Kudos to Trump! In words of Donald Trump – Romny’s Tax Returns for Obama’s College records and Passport Records – “A wonderful trade.” Let there be no doubt that Obama’s college records will reveal he was foreign student who received foreign aid. And the passport records will show Obama was and maybe still an Indonesian Citizen.

  3. avatar
    Mitch August 7, 2012 at 10:44 am #

    Donald is a tool, but no one on Fox and Friends contradicted or even questioned anything he said. They must be scared to death of him, or stupid, or both. (I vote both.)

  4. avatar
    Andrew Vrba, PmG August 7, 2012 at 11:09 am #

    I really don’t see why anyone pays attention to “The Donald”. The man made his current fortune, by selling a book about how he lost a crap-ton of cash, by failing in the Real Estate market.

  5. avatar
    Loren August 7, 2012 at 11:44 am #

    “Donald Trump suggests that Obama trade his college admission (and other) records for the Romney tax returns. That’s silly in my estimation, but political maneuvering is not what I comment on here.”

    I’ll comment on it then.

    I certainly see nothing that the Romney campaign would stand to *gain* from such a trade. Romney’s people know whether or not his tax returns would benefit or hurt his campaign. They clearly don’t want to release them for some reason, so to change course they’d need to think they would benefit from getting Obama’s college records.

    And it seems unlikely that that would be much help. We know Obama graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law, so his grades from there will look good. If his Columbia grades are decent too, then Romney has only achieved making his opponent look *good*.

    Best case scenario for Romney in this arrangement is that Romney’s taxes are in order, and Obama got lousy grades in undergrad. In which case Romney further cements his status as a zillionaire now, while showing that Obama got middling grades 30 years ago, before doing well at Harvard.

    The only way this scheme works to Romney’s benefit is if the Birthers are *right* about Obama being registered as a foreign student. Which is highly implausible, and I daresay the Romney campaign itself does not believe for a second.

  6. avatar
    foreigner August 7, 2012 at 11:56 am #

    the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecy
    are much more than the $4M.
    Add to that the cost of decreasing trust in the US-government.
    Now I anticipate people saying these were private costs, not government
    costs so that doesn’t count.
    Not quite right. The government participates in private costs through
    (fewer) taxes.

  7. avatar
    G August 7, 2012 at 12:34 pm #

    BS. Now you are just outright making up LIES.

    There is NO evidence of such costs. NONE. Just ficticious made up numbers by Birthers, with ZERO substantiation.

    The only one’s in these Birther lawsuits that are raking up costs are the frivolous filers (aka the Birthers) themselves.

    In those instances where defense incurrs costs, it is the minor but standard cost of having to simply file to respond to any lawsuit motion some nut brings against them. Those types of legal expenses happen all the time and are nothing unusual either.

    Further, in a number of cases, the defense lawyers worked Pro Bono – which means NO COSTS incurred by the actual defendants.

    MOST importantly, in ALL of these cases, the frivolous Birthers have LOST and in many of them, the Birthers themselves have had to PAY for the defense’s costs.

    So, the side that is racking up the expenses here is the one that keeps wasting time filing and losing these things – the Birthers.

    foreigner:
    the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecyare much more than the $4M.

    Add to that the cost of decreasing trust in the US-government.Now I anticipate people saying these were private costs, not governmentcosts so that doesn’t count.Not quite right. The government participates in private costs through(fewer) taxes.

  8. avatar
    gorefan August 7, 2012 at 12:39 pm #

    foreigner: the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecy
    are much more than the $4M.

    What investigations? Trump’s? Arpiao’s?

    Name an investigation that cost more than a few thousand dollars.

  9. avatar
    Paper August 7, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

    What G says…

  10. avatar
    bgansel9 is not going away August 7, 2012 at 12:41 pm #

    john: Let there be no doubt that Obama’s college records will reveal he was foreign student who received foreign aid.

    Are you prepared to lay money on that? Let’s make a bet… $100 of mine says you’re wrong.

    If the college transcripts are ever released, and you are correct, you will win $100. Deal? And if you’re incorrect, you will give me $100? What say you?

  11. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 7, 2012 at 12:46 pm #

    You are not God to say “let there be” and make it so.

    john: Let there be no doubt that Obama’s college records will reveal he was foreign student who received foreign aid.

  12. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 7, 2012 at 12:47 pm #

    If they are ever released, the birthers will say they are fake.

    bgansel9 is not going away: If the college transcripts are ever released, and you are correct, you will win $100. Deal? And if you’re incorrect, you will give me $100? What say you?

  13. avatar
    LW August 7, 2012 at 12:48 pm #

    foreigner: the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecy
    are much more than the $4M.

    My standard request, to you, or the Donald if he happens to be following this thread:

    1. Name a document that any other candidate has voluntarily released that Obama has not.

    2. Outline the process and cost for Obama to “seal” this document.

    Alternatively, pick a document that Obama has not released and that no other candidate has either. How much have those candidates paid to “seal” their records in parallel with Obama?

  14. avatar
    bgansel9 is not going away August 7, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: If they are ever released, the birthers will say they are fake.

    You’re probably right Doc, but I want to see if John is willing to put money on it. After all the times they’ve lost the argument, how strong is their faith in any of these claims anymore? John seems like a true believer, I want to see if he really is. 😉

  15. avatar
    LW August 7, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

    By the way, I’ve decided that my original conjecture that Team Obama bought two $2 million rolls of Record-Sealin’ Duct Tape is actually kind of ridiculous.

    It was probably four $1 million rolls.

  16. avatar
    Scientist August 7, 2012 at 12:53 pm #

    john: And the passport records will show Obama was and maybe still an Indonesian Citizen.

    The US government does not track whether someone has other passports. A dual Indonesian/US citizen’s dealings regarding his/her Indonesian passport is entirely between him/her and the government of Indonesia. So, if you want to know if Obama ever held an Indonesian passport, you need to ask the Indonesian embassy. I believe that they have said he did not.

  17. avatar
    Rickey August 7, 2012 at 12:54 pm #

    Speaking of carnival barkers, Wayne Allyn Root is back with his long-debunked claims about Obama and Columbia University.

    http://www.theblaze.com/contributions/obama%E2%80%99s-college-classmate-the-obama-scandal-is-at-columbia/

  18. avatar
    Scientist August 7, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

    foreigner: the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecyare much more than the $4M.Add to that the cost of decreasing trust in the US-government.Now I anticipate people saying these were private costs, not governmentcosts so that doesn’t count.Not quite right. The government participates in private costs through(fewer) taxes.

    Any costs were caused 100% by the birthers. All they had to do right from the beginning was STFU and there would have never been a penny in costs. I suppose you blame crime victims for all the costs police incur in investigating crimes?

  19. avatar
    Scientist August 7, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

    Rickey: Speaking of carnival barkers, Wayne Allyn Root is back with his long-debunked claims about Obama and Columbia University.

    Is it possible for claims to be bunked?

  20. avatar
    bgansel9 is not going away August 7, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

    Scientist: I suppose you blame crime victims for all the costs police incur in investigating crimes?

    Good point!

  21. avatar
    Bernard August 7, 2012 at 1:42 pm #

    There’s quite a difference between Obama’s college records and Romney’s tax returns:
    Obama’s college records are 30 years in the past, cover only a brief period of his life, and, perhaps most important, are not in Obama’s possession but in the custody of the various schools.

    On the other hand, Romney’s tax records are – according to Romney’s own statements in previous political campaigns – highly relevant, much more recent, and, considering that he provided 23 years’ worth of tax returns to the McCain campaign in 2008, already in Romney’s own files.

    I don’t think there’s anything awkward in Obama’s school files; I doubt that Obama had a gang hold down a classmate while he cut off his fair. This is feeding a subtle racist suspicion that Obama somehow got into the best schools only because of Reverse Discrimination (yeah, they give the Editorship of the Harvard Law Review for that, didnja know).

  22. avatar
    G August 7, 2012 at 1:43 pm #

    Agreed ! Well said.

    Bernard: There’s quite a difference between Obama’s college records and Romney’s tax returns:Obama’s college records are 30 years in the past, cover only a brief period of his life, and, perhaps most important, are not in Obama’s possession but in the custody of the various schools.On the other hand, Romney’s tax records are – according to Romney’s own statements in previous political campaigns – highly relevant, much more recent, and, considering that he provided 23 years’ worth of tax returns to the McCain campaign in 2008, already in Romney’s own files.I don’t think there’s anything awkward in Obama’s school files; I doubt that Obama had a gang hold down a classmate while he cut off his fair. This is feeding a subtle racist suspicion that Obama somehow got into the best schools only because of Reverse Discrimination (yeah, they give the Editorship of the Harvard Law Review for that, didnja know).

  23. avatar
    Horus August 7, 2012 at 2:02 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: If they are ever released, the birthers will say they are fake.

    bgansel9 is not going away: If the college transcripts are ever released, and you are correct, you will win $100. Deal? And if you’re incorrect, you will give me $100? What say you?

    Exactly!

  24. avatar
    Horus August 7, 2012 at 2:06 pm #

    “You know, Obama spent over $4 million in legal fees to keep these things quiet”

    When did the number become $4 million?

    Last I recall they were saying that he spent $2 million to seal his records, now it has become double.

    This is like the crazy numbers they were throwing around about the cost of Obama’s trip to India.
    Every 24 hours they doubled the number till it got up to $210 million per day.

  25. avatar
    Andrew Vrba, PmG August 7, 2012 at 2:07 pm #

    Honestly, I’m amazed that you are still showing your face here, John. As many times as you’ve been proved wrong. I guess you just can’t resist another helping of crow.

  26. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 7, 2012 at 2:10 pm #

    So if this is the case, then John McCain is in a position to refute the claim repeated by Harry Reid that Romney didn’t file pay any taxes for 10 years.

    Bernard: On the other hand, Romney’s tax records are – according to Romney’s own statements in previous political campaigns – highly relevant, much more recent, and, considering that he provided 23 years’ worth of tax returns to the McCain campaign in 2008, already in Romney’s own files.

  27. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 7, 2012 at 2:11 pm #

    I’m sure that in John’s view, his comments are devastating and that we all recognize it but are too afraid to own up to it.

    Andrew Vrba, PmG:
    Honestly, I’m amazed that you are still showing your face here, John. As many times as you’ve been proved wrong. I guess you just can’t resist another helping of crow.

  28. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 7, 2012 at 2:12 pm #

    Trump likes to do things in a big way.

    Horus: When did the number become $4 million?

  29. avatar
    foreigner August 7, 2012 at 2:36 pm #

    even if you blame it to the birthers, Obama could have avoided it, right ?

    all the spent time in internet debating this
    all the TV-shows
    money spent to buy books, time lost to read articles,watch videos

    I think one hour spent on this for 10% of US-citizens is a reasonable estimate

    so damage by birtherism-secrecy ~$500M

    what’s your estimate ?

  30. avatar
    Rickey August 7, 2012 at 2:38 pm #

    Scientist: Is it possible for claims to be bunked?

    Apparently not, at least according to my Compact Oxford English Dictionary. It reminds me of “uncouth” (which is in the dictionary) and “couth” (which is not).

  31. avatar
    Jim August 7, 2012 at 2:41 pm #

    foreigner:
    even if you blame it to the birthers, Obama could have avoided it, right ?

    all the spent time in internet debating this
    all the TV-shows
    money spent to buy books, time lost to read articles,watch videos

    I think one hour spent on this for 10% of US-citizens is a reasonable estimate

    so damage by birtherism-secrecy ~$500M

    what’s your estimate ?

    I estimate that it is much less than that. I wouldn’t call it damage, it would be much more accurate to call it entertainment. The birthers are 0-140+ and counting, the only time they appear on TV is to show what a joke they are, and the time spent on the internet is time I’d spend on other forms of entertainment…so no real loss. So, basically, the waste is by the birthers who keep falling for this scam.

  32. avatar
    Rickey August 7, 2012 at 2:44 pm #

    Loren:

    The only way this scheme works to Romney’s benefit is if the Birthers are *right* about Obama being registered as a foreign student.Which is highly implausible, and I daresay the Romney campaign itself does not believe for a second.

    As it currently stands, it’s a win-win for Obama. This seems to be reflected in the latest Pew Poll, which shows Romney’s favorability at 34% favorable, 50% unfavorable. In the same poll Obama is 51% favorable, 42% unfavorable.

  33. avatar
    Scientist August 7, 2012 at 2:44 pm #

    foreigner: even if you blame it to the birthers, Obama could have avoided it, right ?
    all the spent time in internet debating this
    all the TV-shows
    money spent to buy books, time lost to read articles,watch videos

    The President is not responsible for how people choose to waste their time, nor what they choose to read. By the way, why is a German citizen who lives in Germany wasting his time here? Is that Frau Merkel’s fault? And I demand her birth certificate, so it is her fault that I have to demand it. And I say she has spent 40 million euros to cover it up. That could create a few thousand jobs for unemployed Spaniards.

    Incidentally, Spain is a wonderful country and doesn’t deserve what is happening to it (though Greece I have less sympathy for).

  34. avatar
    G August 7, 2012 at 2:45 pm #

    Agreed. That is the KEY to this whole argument, as I’ve seen it.

    It has been stated for quite some time that McCain’s campaign received those 23 years of tax records when they put Romney through their VP vetting.

    So, it simply makes Romney’s stonewalling even more suspicious in these matters… as McCain remains silent in the face of Reid’s accusations, yet Romney is feverently digging his heels in to resist putting out in public documents that he was willing to release to McCain’s campaign, just one cycle prior…

    Dr. Conspiracy: So if this is the case, then John McCain is in a position to refute the claim repeated by Harry Reid that Romney didn’t file pay any taxes for 10 years.

  35. avatar
    G August 7, 2012 at 2:50 pm #

    Negligible.

    You really have a myopic view of the world, don’t you? You seem to only pay attention to ONLY what you WISH to see.

    Face it, the internet is rife with endless debates on all sorts of things, including a lot of pure crazy drivel. Always has been. The same can be said with bloviating talking head punditry on TV.

    A lot of time is wasted by arguments over silly nonsense and also partisan hackery. Birtherism is just one form of stupid crazy. Without Birtherism at all, there would still be plenty of other nonsense to similarly fill the time…

    foreigner: even if you blame it to the birthers, Obama could have avoided it, right ?all the spent time in internet debating thisall the TV-showsmoney spent to buy books, time lost to read articles,watch videosI think one hour spent on this for 10% of US-citizens is a reasonable estimateso damage by birtherism-secrecy ~$500Mwhat’s your estimate ?

  36. avatar
    Underdog August 7, 2012 at 3:18 pm #

    If Trump were smart, he could make some money out of this mess…

    Birther Apprentice!
    There could be challenges for a variety of categories:
    Finding ‘real’ experts
    Getting their hands on the ‘real’ birth certificate
    Obtaining DNA from Frank Marshall and Obama for comparison
    Winning in Court
    Passing a Lie Detector

    I could go on and on…….

  37. avatar
    American Mzungu August 7, 2012 at 3:18 pm #

    foreigner: I think one hour spent on this for 10% of US-citizens is a reasonable estimate
    so damage by birtherism-secrecy ~$500M
    what’s your estimate ?

    $500.2 Trillion in actual costs. Bribing and/or intimidating all members of Congress, the military brass, the entire court system, State legislatures, all of the Obama clan, the DARPA program, the Manchurian Candidate program, Jimbob and all of the Obots—this stuff doesn’t come cheap. The costs will also go up exponentially to maintain the silence of all the poeple who “know something.” The oportunity costs…you calculate.

    If Obama doesn’t win, the world economy will collapse without the economic stimulus that “the Conspiracy” contributes.

  38. avatar
    Andrew Vrba, PmG August 7, 2012 at 3:27 pm #

    Underdog:
    If Trump were smart, he could make some money out of this mess…

    Birther Apprentice!

    A bunch of comically incompetent losers, sitting around a large room…where have I seen that before?

    http://www.blogcdn.com/www.aoltv.com/media/2008/06/legion_of_doom.png

    Though, to the Legion of Doom’s credit, Bizarro and Solomon Grundry are in fact smarter, and have won more court cases, than every birther attorney combined.

  39. avatar
    Thrifty August 7, 2012 at 3:34 pm #

    You know, Obama spent over $4 million in legal fees to keep these things quiet

    It’s up to 4 million now? Last I checked, the birthers were pulling the more conservative 2 million dollar figure out of their asses.

  40. avatar
    LW August 7, 2012 at 3:36 pm #

    Thrifty: It’s up to 4 million now?Last I checked, the birthers were pulling the more conservative 2 million dollar figure out of their asses.

    At some point, you have to buy more rolls of duct tape. It adds up.

    Foreigner, is it also George Bush’s fault that he was never able to mollify the Truthers?

  41. avatar
    Thrifty August 7, 2012 at 3:38 pm #

    Didn’t you say you lived in a foreign country, like one of those ones with taxpayer funded health care? Do you then beat people up and complain about the costs of their medical treatment?

    foreigner: the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecy
    are much more than the $4M.
    Add to that the cost of decreasing trust in the US-government.
    Now I anticipate people saying these were private costs, not government
    costs so that doesn’t count.
    Not quite right. The government participates in private costs through
    (fewer) taxes.

  42. avatar
    Thrifty August 7, 2012 at 3:41 pm #

    Well I guess the number is 4 million now. Tossing out a new Birther lie is like peeing in a swimming pool. Once it’s there, it’s there for good.

  43. avatar
    Steve August 7, 2012 at 3:48 pm #

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but as I understand it, President Obama could not have been registered as a foreign student because he attended elementary school, junior high and high school in the U.S.
    Am I right about that?

  44. avatar
    Scientist August 7, 2012 at 5:12 pm #

    Steve: Correct me if I’m wrong, but as I understand it, President Obama could not have been registered as a foreign student because he attended elementary school, junior high and high school in the U.S.Am I right about that?

    Generally yes. First, anyone applying to a college out of a US high school will be lumped together with all the US students. Second, foreign students need to get an F student visa. A dual US/foreign citizen who tries to pretend they aren’t a US citizen is not eligible for such a visa (since US citizens don’t get US visas). Third, the idea that foreign students can get into prestigious US universities with lower grades is blatantly wrong. The simple truth is that the elite schools in most countries are at least as good as schools in the US and in many cases better and their students blow away US students in standard exams. Sad to say, but it’s true. So pretending to be a foreigner will not help you get in to the Ivy League and will likely make it harder.

    Plus, we know Obama had federal student loans, which are only available to US citizens and permanent residents. Mr Root simply doesn’t know his behind from his elbow. If he would like to stop in here, I will tell him so to his face.

  45. avatar
    Bernard August 7, 2012 at 5:28 pm #

    Despite the birther accusations, I don’t believe that Obama has spent as much as $100 on the various lawsuits. The lawyers representing his side have been volunteers with his Presidential campaign and some have explicitly said that they are doing this for free. The various schools, the Hawaii Health Dept, and the like already keep all their files – on every one – confidential, so it actually costs them if they treat Obama’s file differently. With reference to this, the Hawaii Legislature passed a law explicitly instructing the Health Dept not to spend any money responding to birther importunities; the amount that had been spent on postage just telling those people to play in the traffic was considered excessive.

    I, for one, don’t care that much about Obama’s school records. I don’t think we ever got the report cards for any previous President. Knowing he got the editorship of the Harvard Law Review compares very favorably with, say, Dubya’s Yale career. Further details of Obama’s grades would make me feel even more inadequate that I already do.

  46. avatar
    CarlOrcas August 7, 2012 at 6:01 pm #

    foreigner: the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecy
    are much more than the $4M.

    How do you know this?

  47. avatar
    Thrifty August 7, 2012 at 6:15 pm #

    American Mzungu: $500.2 Trillion in actual costs.Bribing and/or intimidating all members of Congress, the military brass, the entire court system, State legislatures, all of the Obama clan, the DARPA program, the Manchurian Candidate program, Jimbob and all of the Obots—this stuff doesn’t come cheap.The costs will also go up exponentially to maintain the silence of all the poeple who “know something.” The oportunity costs…you calculate.

    Plus, when you factor in shipping, handling, gratuity, and late fees, it comes out to 63 kajillion dollars.

  48. avatar
    Northland10 August 7, 2012 at 6:19 pm #

    Being a US Citizen is also a barrier to registering as a foreign student.

    Steve:
    Correct me if I’m wrong, but as I understand it, President Obama could not have been registered as a foreign student because he attended elementary school, junior high and high school in the U.S.
    Am I right about that?

  49. avatar
    Northland10 August 7, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

    The corn flakes tell him so.

    CarlOrcas: How do you know this?

  50. avatar
    JD Reed August 7, 2012 at 6:36 pm #

    Scientist: Generally yes. First, anyone applying to a college out of a US high school will be lumped together with all the US students. Second, foreign students need to get an F student visa. A dual US/foreign citizen who tries to pretend they aren’t a US citizen is not eligible for such a visa (since US citizens don’t get US visas). Third, the idea that foreign students can get into prestigious US universities with lower grades is blatantly wrong. The simple truth is that the elite schools in most countries are at least as good as schools in the US and in many cases better and their students blow away US students in standard exams. Sad to say, but it’s true. So pretending to be a foreigner will not help you get in to the Ivy League and will likely make it harder.Plus, we know Obama had federal student loans, which are only available to US citizens and permanent residents. Mr Root simply doesn’t know his behind from his elbow. If he would like to stop in here, I will tell him so to his face.

    foreigner: the cost that the investigations took which were caused by the secrecyare much more than the $4M.Add to that the cost of decreasing trust in the US-government.Now I anticipate people saying these were private costs, not governmentcosts so that doesn’t count.Not quite right. The government participates in private costs through(fewer) taxes.

    foreigner: even if you blame it to the birthers, Obama could have avoided it, right ?all the spent time in internet debating thisall the TV-showsmoney spent to buy books, time lost to read articles,watch videosI think one hour spent on this for 10% of US-citizens is a reasonable estimateso damage by birtherism-secrecy ~$500Mwhat’s your estimate ?

  51. avatar
    Paper August 7, 2012 at 6:52 pm #

    You know, really the best thing he could have done to avoid this whole mess would have been not to run in the first place. What was the man thinking? If he hadn’t run, then all these &*^&%$&*%*.’s wouldn’t have felt any need to hate him or deride him or spend their time talking nonsense, or worrying about PDFs that are meaningless. It really is his fault, isn’t it?

    But let me add one quiet, simple note in response to your point about “damage by birtherism-secrecy”: THERE IS NO FREAKING SECRECY!

    So your premise is incorrect from the beginning.

    It is not secrecy if the President doesn’t bend over and let you do a colonoscopy on him!

    People who do not understand that this President has been more open on this topic than any president ever have a real problem that will not be resolved by being nice and just showing one more thing.

    What about the toilet paper they use in the White House? Hmmm? If the President would just let the public examine that toilet paper, THEN we can say this presidency is truly transparent, don’t you think? Would that be enough to appease your concerns about birthers being goaded into hatred and meaningless drivel about PDFs?

    foreigner:
    even if you blame it to the birthers, Obama could have avoided it, right ?

    all the spent time in internet debating this
    all the TV-shows
    money spent to buy books, time lost to read articles,watch videos

    I think one hour spent on this for 10% of US-citizens is a reasonable estimate

    so damage by birtherism-secrecy ~$500M

    what’s your estimate ?

  52. avatar
    JD Reed August 7, 2012 at 8:39 pm #

    Refresh my memory — isn’t foreigner a real foreigner? If so, what makes him an expert on US politics? And why’s he so passionate? I know one thing: his logic would flunk badly at a first-rate US university. Anyone who’s watched this zoo with a halfway objective eye knows that birthers will NEVER accept any evidence that refutes their preconceived beliefs. So nothing Obama could have done would have satisifed them. If they spent their time on a fruitless, bizarre quest, it was their choice. But judging from the quality of their thinking — similar to foreigner’s — I doubt that they would have been very productive had they not plunged down this particular rabbit hole to waste their time.
    Get over it foreigner. Obama has produced everything legally required of him. Should he have produced more than the legal minimum? Actually, no, To say he should have is to say that some people in society are morally entitled to more than they’re legally entitled to, and conversely others are morally entitled to less than their legal entitlements. That’s not equal justice under the law.

  53. avatar
    G August 7, 2012 at 8:53 pm #

    Yes, according to him. He claims to be in/from Germany.

    JD Reed: Refresh my memory — isn’t foreigner a real foreigner?

    Good questions. Similar questions have been posed to him before. So far, he hasn’t provided any response that explains his “interest” in OUR election and politics. I suspect he has some “ulterior motive” that he thinks he’s cleverly “hiding”…

    All he’s done is demonstrated faulty logic (as you’ve noted) and massive concern troll bias.

    JD Reed: If so, what makes him an expert on US politics? And why’s he so passionate? I know one thing: his logic would flunk badly at a first-rate US university.

    I agree with all the rest of the points you made in your post as well.

  54. avatar
    Paper August 7, 2012 at 8:56 pm #

    The thing is, of course, that the President HAS produced more than is legally required. He was not required to produce his COLB, nor the Long Form. But he did. No other president has.

    JD Reed: Obama has produced everything legally required of him. Should he have produced more than the legal minimum? Actually, no,

  55. avatar
    JD Reed August 7, 2012 at 9:22 pm #

    Paper: The thing is, of course, that the President HAS produced more than is legally required. He was not required to produce his COLB, nor the Long Form. But he did. No other president has.

    Point taken.

  56. avatar
    AlCum August 8, 2012 at 12:15 am #

    john:
    Kudos to Trump!In words of Donald Trump – Romny’s Tax Returns for Obama’s College records and Passport Records – “A wonderful trade.”Let there be no doubt that Obama’s college records will reveal he was foreign student who received foreign aid.And the passport records will show Obama was and maybe still an Indonesian Citizen.

    It is not legally possible for Obama to be an Indonesian citizen.

  57. avatar
    NoE August 8, 2012 at 12:33 am #

    Thrifty – are you sure it isn’t a 63 gabazillion?

  58. avatar
    linda August 8, 2012 at 12:56 am #

    I thought about responding, but you seem to have taken care of it.

    Paper: But let me add one quiet, simple note in response to your point about “damage by birtherism-secrecy”: THERE IS NO FREAKING SECRECY!

  59. avatar
    linda August 8, 2012 at 1:10 am #

    No. You have asked this and been answered before. Obama released a birth certificate in June 2008, prior to the election in Nov 2008. He wasn’t required to do that, but he did. Everything has been caused by birthers, denying reality and refusing the acceptance afforded other US presidents.

    foreigner: Obama could have avoided it, right ?

  60. avatar
    Paper August 8, 2012 at 1:44 am #

    I think this is an important point not to be missed.

    linda:

    …refusing the acceptance afforded other US presidents.

  61. avatar
    That Other Mike August 8, 2012 at 6:08 am #

    JD Reed:
    Refresh my memory — isn’t foreigner a real foreigner? If so, what makes him an expert on US politics? And why’s he so passionate?

    Being a foreigner doesn’t make someone uninterested in US politics… I’m a foreigner but I live and work in the US as a Permanent Resident, so it’s kind of relevant to me. I know the situation is different, I just wanted to point out that being interested in US politics is not the exclusive domain of citizens…

  62. avatar
    Lupin August 8, 2012 at 6:57 am #

    Personally, I don’t think “foreigner” is a “real” foreigner, notwithstanding his IP address.

    Excuse me for saying so, but he sounds just like an American nutcase. (Not that we don’t have crazies here, we do, but they’d come across differently, I think.)

    Anyway, that’s IMHO.

  63. avatar
    foreigner August 8, 2012 at 7:30 am #

    G wrote:
    > Yes, according to him. He claims to be in/from Germany.

    and proved it.

    > JD Reed: Refresh my memory — isn’t foreigner a real foreigner?
    > Good questions. Similar questions have been posed to him before. So far, he hasn’t provided
    > any response that explains his “interest” in OUR election and politics. I suspect he has some
    > “ulterior motive” that he thinks he’s cleverly “hiding”…

    not true.
    this came up before several times and I explained.
    I posted a link to the gsgs-thread at fogbow before,
    http://www.thefogbow.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=73&t=7825
    which checks it with links to verify
    and gives the motives. I also posted my birth certificate at Woodman’s blog.
    (…and yet this thing just keeps on going)
    Let me add, that I’m generally interested in internet discussion and cooperation and
    how opinions are formed and controversies resolved.

    > All he’s done is demonstrated faulty logic (as you’ve noted) and massive concern troll bias.

    just what you say, just your opinion. Others disagree

    > JD Reed: If so, what makes him an expert on US politics?

    internet

    > And why’s he so passionate?
    > I know one thing: his logic would flunk badly at a first-rate US university.

    professors usually have no problem with my logic, it’s just the ordinary people
    in forums and blogs like this.

    > I agree with all the rest of the points you made in your post as well.

    Obama confirmed here that it’s reasonable to provide
    additional information for verification of his birth, because the
    whole discussion did damage to the country
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79PHwza4row&feature=related

    I do see a general contradiction here.
    Obot have no problem correcting,enlightening birthers about the truth,
    giving additional evidence, debunking their arguments
    even insulting,ridiculing them frequently.
    But OTOH they don’t want Obama to do this.

  64. avatar
    CarlOrcas August 8, 2012 at 9:44 am #

    Rickey:
    Speaking of carnival barkers, Wayne Allyn Root is back with his long-debunked claims about Obama and Columbia University.

    http://www.theblaze.com/contributions/obama%E2%80%99s-college-classmate-the-obama-scandal-is-at-columbia/

    And this morning, right at the top of their main page, they have a piece debunking Root’s screed. Very strange………….

    http://www.theblaze.com/stories/5-facts-we-know-about-obamas-college-years/

  65. avatar
    The Magic M August 8, 2012 at 11:28 am #

    American Mzungu: If Obama doesn’t win, the world economy will collapse without the economic stimulus that “the Conspiracy” contributes.

    No, you see, if Obama doesn’t win, there await brand new conspiracies about Mittens that will go *on top of* the existing ones – just like the Obama presidency didn’t end the 9/11 conspiracy movement.
    So Obama losing is actually an *additional* stimulus for the conspiracy industry. 😉

    Especially losing to Mittens. I am sure some people will dig out documents allegedly showing the framers’ intent that a Mormon could never be legally President.

    So if Obama wins, all it will teach us is that the conspiracy industry thinks another 4 years of birtherism will be better for the economy than 4 years of faitherism (I hereby reserve rights to the word “faither” for anyone challenging Romney’s legitimacy based on his religion.)

  66. avatar
    American Mzungu August 8, 2012 at 12:13 pm #

    The Magic M: So if Obama wins, all it will teach us is that the conspiracy industry thinks another 4 years of birtherism will be better for the economy than 4 years of faitherism (I hereby reserve rights to the word “faither” for anyone challenging Romney’s legitimacy based on his religion.)

    Thanks for clearing that up for us. 🙂

  67. avatar
    Paper August 8, 2012 at 12:36 pm #

    The President ALREADY provided that additional information in the very press conference in the youtube video you link! The LFBC. Done and done.

    The President did not say it is reasonable to let every carnival barker stick their tongue down his throat and test his tonsils for extraterrestrial DNA!

    You’ll notice the President’s reasons for holding that press conference. Reasons that no longer exist. The media is not all tied up in knots about this issue. The President broke that logjam by requesting an exception from Hawaii and receiving/showing his LFBC.

    Birthers are no longer a distraction taking up the media oxygen. They now are a joke. The level at which birthers exist now is trivial. The President’s purpose, as he states in that video, was to put this issue to rest so he can get back to doing the important things. He succeeded at his purpose. His purpose was not to convince every single birther in America. Presidents have more important stuff to do.

    In the same way, I never wanted or expected George Bush to spend time reassuring all the truthers in America. This kind of stuff always exists in our country (and no doubt everywhere). If a president (or his staff/administration) spent any real time on such matters, they would never get anything important done. For that matter, I speak of what I know, because *I* spend too much time on it here.

    You have said it would take a short amount of time to deal with PDF questions.

    Well, first of all, all those questions are meaningless and silly. People want to engage in an intellectual exercise? Fine. You want to suggest that such an intellectual exercise has any importance in regards to the President’s birth? Sorry. That suggestion deserves ridicule. If you seriously hold that as a concern, something is wrong on your end. I have no idea what. Nor do I care. I know birthers can be intelligent. The ones I know are. But they misapply their intelligence, as you seem to do here. Anyone can run around in a rabbit hole using their mental horsepower to the nth degree. But it’s still a rabbit hole that goes nowhere no matter how much octane is in a birther’s brain.

    Secondly, it doesn’t take a short amount of time. The short amount of time was releasing the COLB and the LFBC. Then there’s the PDF nonsense which deserves only laughter. then there’s two parent citizenship. Then there’s Frank Davis. Then there’s this that the other thing. It doesn’t end. You yourself may only care about the PDF. Go ahead and waste your time. That’s your prerogative. President and their staffs have a few more meaningful items on their agenda than satisfying b.s., most especially when they have ALREADY dealt with the matter more than anyone in history!

    What is so hard to understand about people on a blog wasting their time on trivial matters, debunking various details and rabbit-hole controversies, even as you say in many instances resorting to insults? What is so hard to understand about people being fine with their own personal waste of time but not wanting the President of the United States to waste *his* time, or his staff’s time, or our tax dollars? What is so hard to understand about people feeling free to insult and ridicule on a blog, often anonymously, but not wanting their President to stoop to such behavior? Lightly make fun at a Correspondents Dinner? Okay. Joking about his birth here and there? Fine. Getting into the trenches about nonsense and even giving someone like Corsi the respect of a presidential insult? No. As the President says in the youtube video you yourself provide, he’s got better things to do then getting distracted by carnival barkers.

    Make no doubt about it, the PDF “concern” is pure carnival nonsense. Knock your socks off exploring all the details. We learn new things. Great. But do not pretend it means anything about the President’s birth.

    I have higher expectations of my President and his staff than spending time debunking layers and PDFs and silly meaningless drivel. I might waste my time and get distracted from the important things in my life, but I’m not President. The President did more than any president in history. If that is not enough, the problem is not on his side.

    You spend way too much of your energy trying to say people should ask the President to waste his time just because they are wasting their own time.

    The birth certificate issue is not “damaging” the country. What is damaging is the hate out here. Hate is not going to be resolved by talking about PDFs, which is nonsense in the first place. Birthers now are meaningless.

    If any birthers exist who are not haters, well, then they don’t deserve any attention of import at all. They are just twisting around in fantasy. Their only connection to the larger social impact, election-wise or otherwise, is by being a subset of hate-mongers or of the political slander machine. Political slander doesn’t matter. It’s just standard operating procedure, and that’s not going to change any votes at this late date. As a subset of hate, the only attention they deserve is as haters, not as discerning minds who are onto something important. Some intelligent people spinning their engines, sure. But so what?

    The President, or his staff, is supposed to spend even more time on nonsense and carnival barkers? Or on convincing misguided brainiacs to get a life, convincing conspiracy theorists to focus on real problems? Or on trying to appease haters? Especially when appeasement only fuels haters?

    This is not just about politics and presidential eligibility. It is a life lesson about hate. It is a life lesson about distraction.

    The President has handled the matter already. he has provided all the additional information needed to resolve the problem. It has in fact subsided, and his birth is a non-issue. Talking about PDFs is not going to have any bearing on those who want to hate on “others,” African-American, Sikh, Mexican, Muslim, gays, Jews, anyone who is different.

    Finally, to repeat, if the rest of us want to waste our time, for whatever reason, that is up to us.

    foreigner:

    Obama confirmed here that it’s reasonable to provide
    additional information for verification of his birth, because the
    whole discussion did damage to the country
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79PHwza4row&feature=related

    I do see a general contradiction here.
    Obot have no problem correcting,enlightening birthers about the truth,
    giving additional evidence, debunking their arguments
    even insulting,ridiculing them frequently.
    But OTOH they don’t want Obama to do this.

  68. avatar
    Paper August 8, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

    This is an example of context. Structured within the confines of a scholarly endeavor, that is one thing. Hey, Corsi got a PhD. Professors would never fail someone for believing such things in their personal life, but, by way of example, Corsi would never have received such a PHD if he submitted his birth certificate book as his thesis.

    As G pointed out elsewhere, when you stick to specific questions of process (like all your other posts about PDF details), fine. As Dr. C pointed out as well, birthers can get details right, and it is a mistake to just call every single thing they say nonsense. But when you lift your head to the big picture, then yes, birther ideas are ridiculous, the idea that the PDF is forged, or “possibly” forged, or that there are “questionable” details that make one think there is hanky-panky going on about the President’s birth, that is total nonsense.

    Logic is a tool. If your premise is incorrect, being logical doesn’t help. You just proceed logically down a rabbit hole that goes nowhere.

    foreigner: professors usually have no problem with my logic, it’s just the ordinary people
    in forums and blogs like this.

  69. avatar
    paula Sweet August 18, 2012 at 2:51 am #

    bgansel9, if you’re really serious, you would put up some big money. $100 is chicken feed, you could go out to a nice restaurant and that’s about it. I could bet $100 on something if I wanted to, and I’m poor.

    We all know John’s wrong and he’s never going to bet anything.

  70. avatar
    bgansel9 August 18, 2012 at 3:21 am #

    paula Sweet: I could bet $100 on something if I wanted to, and I’m poor.

    I see we’re both in the same boat. That’s what I can afford. If you want to offer more, go for it. I hope you get a great big paycheck out of it.

    I don’t make bets with money I don’t think I can cover. That’s the only fair way to bet. I realize John is wrong (or I wouldn’t be asking him to put up money) but I have integrity, which means I would never short a bet.

  71. avatar
    Keith August 18, 2012 at 10:33 am #

    bgansel9: I see we’re both in the same boat. That’s what I can afford. If you want to offer more, go for it. I hope you get a great big paycheck out of it.

    I don’t make bets with money I don’t think I can cover. That’s the only fair way to bet. I realize John is wrong (or I wouldn’t be asking him to put up money) but I have integrity, which means I would never short a bet.

    I admire your integrity. A gambling debt is a debt of honor. I volunteer to hold the bets for you folks until the payoff.

  72. avatar
    JPotter August 18, 2012 at 2:51 pm #

    Horus: When did the number become $4 million?

    Over a year ago. Th original claim of $2M was lifted from the latest campaign finance report filed at the time of the 2008 election, which showed Obama 2008 had $2M in legal fees. The final report filed in 2009 showed $2.6M. For some reason they never updated. Sometime in 2011(?) the $4M figure appeared. Any attempts to ‘prove’ th allegation by referring back to the FEC filings are long gone.

    Why hasn’t it doubled to $8M yet?

  73. avatar
    JPotter August 18, 2012 at 2:58 pm #

    paula Sweet:
    bgansel9, if you’re really serious, you would put up some big money.$100 is chicken feed,you could go out to a nice restaurant and that’s about it.I could bet $100 on something if I wanted to, and I’m poor.

    We all know John’s wrong and he’s never going to bet anything.

    The largest wager I ever made was for $500. And only made because it was, literally a sure thing. It paid off $5. Low risk, low return. Still, 1% in 6 hours ain’t bad.

  74. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 18, 2012 at 3:13 pm #

    I think $12 million will be the next figure.

    JPotter: Why hasn’t it doubled to $8M yet?

  75. avatar
    Thrifty August 18, 2012 at 3:16 pm #

    JPotter: Why hasn’t it doubled to $8M yet?

    It’s like the Powerball jackpot. The longer the Birthers go on losing, the larger it becomes. I figure it goes up by some increment of $50,000 for every lost case, but it isn’t added into the sum until a certain amount of time or number of losses.

  76. avatar
    JPotter August 18, 2012 at 4:01 pm #

    Thrifty: It’s like the Powerball jackpot.The longer the Birthers go on losing, the larger it becomes.I figure it goes up by some increment of $50,000 for every lost case, but it isn’t added into the sum until a certain amount of time or number of losses.

    I suggest an alternate version of the National Debt Clock, albeit a slower running one. For now. It’ll slope up after the re-election. 😉

  77. avatar
    donna August 19, 2012 at 12:52 am #

    why is it that there’s only a $20k “reward” for obama’s school records?

    http://content.usatoday.com/communities/theoval/post/2012/05/conservative-offers-20k-for-obamas-college-transcripts/1#.UDBwG0Rgs7A

    me thinks they really don’t want to know how smart he is – he told marianiss he had a 3.7 average at columbia which makes magna cum laude from Harvard reasonable

  78. avatar
    bob j August 19, 2012 at 1:03 am #

    donna:
    why is it that there’s only a $20k “reward” for obama’s school records?

    http://content.usatoday.com/communities/theoval/post/2012/05/conservative-offers-20k-for-obamas-college-transcripts/1#.UDBwG0Rgs7A

    Wayne Allyn Root has this one out still. Wonder if he would pay out, since he was a low A, high B student by his own admission.

    http://reason.com/archives/2008/09/05/wayne-allyn-roots-million-doll

  79. avatar
    The Magic M August 19, 2012 at 8:47 am #

    JPotter: Why hasn’t it doubled to $8M yet?

    Will happen. By birther logic, if he had to pay $2 million in earlier years when there weren’t 50 ballot challenges and other stuff, he must have paid a lot more in the recent past to rack up the 137-0 court records against birthers.
    And y’know, you can never beat the “and he additionally paid hundreds of millions in bribes on top of that” conspiracy talk anyway.

  80. avatar
    Dr Kenneth Noisewater August 19, 2012 at 10:30 am #

    donna:
    why is it that there’s only a $20k “reward” for obama’s school records?

    http://content.usatoday.com/communities/theoval/post/2012/05/conservative-offers-20k-for-obamas-college-transcripts/1#.UDBwG0Rgs7A

    me thinks they really don’t want to know how smart he is – he told marianiss he had a 3.7 average at columbia which makes magna cum laude from Harvard reasonable

    It sounds like that missing 20k that Farrah ducked out on keeps getting passed around birtherstan

  81. avatar
    JPotter August 19, 2012 at 2:47 pm #

    The Magic M: And y’know, you can never beat the “and he additionally paid hundreds of millions in bribes on top of that” conspiracy talk anyway.

    That is where the stimulus money went, right? It sure didn’t buy us any jobs, hyuk,hyuk, hyuk.

  82. avatar
    JPotter August 19, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    I think $12 million will be the next figure.

    Oooh, a Fibonacci(?) derivative ( Nx = 2((x-1) • ((x-1) + (x-2))) ), very nice.

  83. avatar
    The Magic M August 20, 2012 at 9:56 am #

    JPotter: That is where the stimulus money went, right?

    Well, at least it’s consistent with the birther claims of “he’s incompetent”. 😉 I mean, seriously, who would pay millions to judges *and* lawyers alike? If bribing the judges is enough, why spend money on lawyers since you’ll win no matter what they plead. If paying the lawyers is enough, why bribe a judge since your legal eagles will leave him no choice but to rule in their favour.
    So either way, one of the two payments is a waste of money. So birthers aren’t just saying “he spends money to keep his records hidden” but also “and he’s a real spendthrift doing it”.

    (However, we all know that the stimulus money actually went into the Vatican bank where the NWO is keeping it stored in 1 cent coins – their superstition, not mine -, causing a collapse into a black hole singularity on December 21st when the Annual Congress Bribes are dumped onto the heap as usual. End of world. I’ll be watching from my new shiny condo on Phobos. Our beloved Alien Overlords say I can haz quad-HD flatscreens there. Tr’xxxnah to y’all!)

    JPotter: a Fibonacci(?) derivative

    If you’re talking about the sequence 1-2-4-12, a better formula would be

    f_n = f_{n-1} * (f_{n-2} + f_{n-3}) , n >= 3 if you set f_0 := 1.

    This would mean the next number will be $72 million. With 3 cases for $2 million, that would cover about 108 birther cases. Wait a minute… That’s almost the entire 0-137 case history of the birthers. OMG it adds up, it must be true! *lol*