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Archive | January, 2013

Survey: where do the birthers come from?

US Map image with states in colored regionsEarly on in the birther movement, the Daily KOS did a survey that included demographic questions. We learned that those doubting Obama’s US birth came from all over, but their percentages were markedly higher in the South.

Obama Conspiracy Theories has done a new first-of-its-kind poll of 8,000 US birthers, asking them where they lived. Since only birthers were polled, the results are reported as a scaled percentage of their states’ population.

Not surprisingly, we found that most birthers live in Texas, followed closely by California and then Florida. The least number of birthers live in Vermont. As a percentage of the population, however, our survey found that the 10 most birtherish states were (starting with the highest): Wyoming, Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Colorado, New Hampshire, Arizona, West Virginia and Montana. Texas came in 18th, California 42nd and Florida 12th.

In the following table I show the Relative Birther Scale (RBS), which is the number of birthers polled per 100,000 in population (2012 estimate). Of course this is not a measure of any absolute number of birthers, since we only counted a sample. Continue Reading →

Orly cries “wolf”

Orly Taitz has a penchant for interpreting judicial events as meaning her litigation targets are in default. She did it in Mississippi with Michael Astrue [link to Taitz web site] and she did it Indiana against the Secretary of State [link to Taitz web site]. And again against Barack Obama in the Judd case in California [link to Taitz web site]. Those are just since last October. She didn’t get a default judgment in any of these.

Well she’s at again, this time declaring Obama is in default in Grinols v. Electoral College [link to Taitz web site].  I am not a lawyer, and as I continue to do this web site I become more and more aware of how much I don’t know about the law and how it is difficult to substitute Google for a real legal education. Nevertheless, based on Orly’s track record and the presumed competence of Obama’s representation, I’m going out on a limb here and say that Taitz is wrong.

In the federal system there are two standards of response to the complaint in a civil lawsuit, one for ordinary folks and one for the government. This is detailed in FRCP 12(a). The normal 21-day response requirement is extended to 60 days when the United States or one of its Officers is sued in connection with their official duties. Orly Taitz is trying to sue Obama as a candidate, not as President, but she served him on January 4 through the Attorney General, and not personally. Since she served the government, only the government is obligated to respond, and they get 60 days. If Orly persists in saying that she is suing Obama personally, then she hasn’t served him at all, and the 21-day clock hasn’t even started.

Anyhow, Taitz has filed for a “expedited default judgment” against Obama and in that judgment she is asking the Court to declare Barack Obama ineligible to be President (point 8 in the proposed order).

Orly Taitz is crying “wolf” and wasting the taxpayers motion tilting at windmills.

Here’s Orly’s motion:

Continue Reading →

Massively inflated numbers on Taitz petition

Orly Taitz reports crazy numbers of signers for her petition, the most recent number I’ve seen from her is 20,000. That’s just wrong.

The first problem is duplicate signers. Look at these screen shots:

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Those are just recent duplicate signers who signed twice in a row, and signers that made no attempt to hide their double signatures. Indeed there is no verification of email addresses in the signing process and somebody can just make up a name and a location. A name isn’t even required. Since only the first name and last name initial is entered at all, duplicates are not easy to count. I noticed that “Darren H.” from Diablo, California, signed 8 times and “Renee B.” from Greeley, Colorado is a fiver.

Some of the “signings” are pranks. I found 47 like this in a group: Continue Reading →

New (old) attack on Obama’s Selective Service registration

The signer of Orly’s latest affidavit sounds a little more expert than the usual Birther volunteer document examiner, 20 years as a special agent with Homeland Security  and 20 years as an investigator with the Coast Guard. For some reason, though, Coffman has had a thing about investigating Barack Obama dating back at least to his Senate days in February of 2008.

I have to start off by saying that I don’t know if this Jeffrey Stephen Coffman has the qualifications listed on his affidavit. For the purposes of discussion, however, I will assume that he does. As with any expert testimony, a report is presented and the methodology is described, and it is the methodology that I will treat below.

Here’s the affidavit: Continue Reading →

Bogus Emails: Birther virus?

I just got this email from Gerry Nance to the Obama Conspiracy Theories email address. You might remember Nance as an early participant in the Birther Movement. I featured him in an article about a year ago. Any time a Birther of note tries to communicate with me, I’m interested, so I clicked on the shortened hyperlink following “What do you think of this?” and I ended up on a web page made to look like MSNBC (but not at MSNBC) touting a work at home scheme.

I have no thought that Nance sent the email intentionally. It’s just another in a long line of emails forged to come from someone I know, but aren’t from them. The connections seem to be from folks that I am friends with on Facebook, or from folks who have appeared on this web site. Nance’s email came from a Yahoo email server with an att.net email address (which is normal for AT&T customers).

It’s a little spooky, however, that somebody found the direct email to the site, which isn’t actually on the site. I guess Nance had my email address in his address book. I might have had him in mine too.

Update:

Ha! Just got another one from “Walter Francis Fitzpatrick III,” this time to my personal email address. The headers indicate it came from Gmail. Fitzpatrick is not in my address book; I checked.

The headers of both of these emails look legit to me (and I have some experience reading email headers) and they indicate that they came from the email accounts of the persons named. That suggests that they have both had their accounts compromised. So far, fingers crossed, I haven’t had any complaints of spam emails coming from me.

Update 2:

I don’t know whether this is just an inflated comment on my article or whether there is a full-fledged outbreak of email virus infection among the Birthers. Orly Taitz published this headline yesterday:

Obots hijacked the e-mail accounts of most of my supporters and investigators. This is an additional charge for the RICO complaint

I only mentioned two, but now it’s “most of my supporters and investigators.” WOWZERS!

Service: a birther game of battleships

If you are not familiar with the pencil or board game of battleships, take a moment to check out the Wikipedia article. Battleships is a guessing game where one side knows where the battleships are, and the other takes blind shots until strategy helps to narrow down the possibilities.

Watching Orly Taitz trying to serve the President in his personal capacity rather reminds me of the game. The Obots know where the ship is, at least those who are attorneys, and the courts know where the ship is, but Orly Taitz seems to be taking blind shots at serving the President, and not applying much if any strategy. In the real battleships, after having missed the ship, one never makes the same guess again; this cannot be said of Taitz.

As with the battleships game, the Obots are keeping the method of serving the President in his personal capacity a secret, although this should be known to any law school graduate.  Before a party can attempt to enforce a subpoena, they must file proof of service with the Court. This Orly Taitz attempted to do for a subpoena to Barack Obama in the case of Grinols v. Electoral College. Here’s the proof of service document. From the proof of service, we see that Orly Taitz took three separate shots at the battleship, one at Obama and two at his “attorneys.”

While Obama is intended to be a party of this lawsuit, there is considerable doubt as to whether he has been properly served with the complaint. Orly Taitz says that she is suing the President in his personal capacity (as a candidate), but the complaint’s proof of service she filed shows service to the US Attorney General. That’s all messed up. According to the Eastern District of California Local Rules 250(5)(c), subpoenas to parties are allowed, so I don’t think it matters at this point whether Obama is a party or a non-party.

So here are some things this layman found wrong with what Taitz did:

  1. The Federal Rule of Civil Procedure governing subpoenas 45(b)(1) says: “If the subpoena commands the production of documents, electronically stored information, or tangible things or the inspection of premises before trial, then before it is served, a notice must be served on each party.” The parties in this action include the Electoral College, the Congress and a bunch of other folks. I see nothing in the court record that Taitz has made the mandatory notification to all  1080 (rough estimate) parties. One might argue that Taitz’s filing of the subpoena on the Court’s ECF system was adequate notice, except that the ECF filing was made on 1/27/2012, one day after the date indicated that the service was done.
  2. FRCP 45(b)(2) seems to say that the subpoena can only be issued within the district (or within 100 miles of it) or within the state. Taitz “served” her subpoenas for production of documents at her law office which is not within 100 miles of where the subpoena was “served.” Service outside this area requires court authorization, which the record does not show.
  3. There is a question as to whether service by certified mail is sufficient. Most courts require personal service. In fact the date on the proof of service is before it is conceivable that it could have been delivered by certified mail. In any case I would think that proof of service, if allowed by mail at all, requires some documentation that the party actually received it, not that it’s “in the mail.” That’s not in the court record.
  4. The proof of service requires “filing with the issuing court a statement showing the date and manner of service and the names of the persons served.” While the copy mailed to President Obama has his name on it, the ones to his attorneys were addressed to “his attorney” which hardly is the “name of the person served.”

BattleShipMiss