This article comes out of three recent events: my participation in comments at ObamaReleaseYourRecords, my interview by a reporter who asked me a lot about birthers, and my extended phone conversation with Orly Taitz this afternoon. Particularly in that first instance, I found that birthers don’t know much about the other side.
I have spent four and a half years studying the birthers, focusing primarily on their arguments and their evidence. Others on my side of the fence have spent time studying the personalities of individual birthers. I’ve read thousands of pages of birther legal briefs and web sites; I’ve watched innumerable videos. It is my belief, and readers may feel free to contradict me, that we Obots (meaning “anti-birthers”) know the birthers very well, but it is also my experience that birthers know virtually nothing about Obots and their thinking. So for the benefit of the birthers, I will try to channel my inner conspiracy theorist and hope that I can answer some birther frequently asked questions about Obots.
Are Obots paid to support Obama on the Internet? No. The bloggers you see on the Internet are independent persons who write for their own reasons. The Jack Ryan person who posts legal documents at Scribd gets some donations from other bloggers to pay a small part of the cost of providing those documents for everyone.
Are Obots Obama supporters? Some are and some aren’t. I count myself an Obama supporter, but others supported Ron Paul or call themselves Conservatives. Being an Obot really isn’t about political party.
If you aren’t paid and aren’t Obama supporters, why do you work to enable that piece of trash in the White House? Everybody has their reasons. What I pick up in conversation with other Obots is a fundamental anxiety about the possibility that irrational ways of looking at things might become mainstream, to the detriment of the country. We not only think that birthers are wrong, but that they make decisions and process information in a defective way, that could lead to wrong choices. We’re afraid of a government composed of people who live by rumors and conspiracy theories, as opposed to facts and expertise. We’re afraid for our basic freedoms if the birthers ever got control.
Why do you support someone who’s constitutionally ineligible? We believe that it is well settled in law that a US-born person is a natural born citizen (except in the family of a foreign diplomat). We are confident of this because courts and courts of appeals in no less than 8 states have said so.
Why are you dead set against the Supreme Court deciding the issue? I’m not against this, and I have never done anything to hinder it. The Supreme Court, not I, decides what cases it will hear. On the other hand, since I believe the issue is settled, I am an advocate for the Supreme Court getting involved.
Why do you support someone who is obviously using forged documents? That really goes to the heart of the issue. We do not believe the President is using forged documents (or a stolen social-security number or any of that other stuff).
How can you not believe the documents are forged when every expert who has looked at them says they are fake? Because that’s not true. The real experts don’t say its fake. A number of us have researched, done experiments, tried and tested the claims of forgery and found that what birthers see as forgery are just the normal way documents of that type are scanned, compressed and saved into files.
How do you explain the halos, the layers, the ability to move the registrar seal around? These are normal for documents processed by any number of commercial hardware and software document processing systems. These things look odd, but only because most folks don’t have experience with the wide range of what is normal in scanned documents. (A number of articles on this site and other Obot web sites go in to great detail on this.) We Obots see things that are odd, but we ask why; we make hypotheses; we test them. We do this rather than claim “forgery” without asking what alternatives are more plausible.
We have many expert affidavits that disagree. No credential forensic document expert has ever said Obama’s birth certificate is a forgery.
What about [insert name of person here]? They are all people with inflated resumes, who do not meet any of the criteria of an expert. They have never been qualified by a court as an expert, they do not have advanced degrees in the subject, they have never taught document examination, and they don’t do it for a living. They only looked at the documents for the purpose of finding some anomaly that proved them fake, not arriving at a true conclusion. You wouldn’t let a volunteer who watches medical shows on TV, and volunteers as a patient advocate in a hospital operate on you, would you?
Why do you hate America and the Constitution? We don’t hate America or the Constitution. We believe in the rule of law. We believe that the country is best served by well-sourced information and reasoned argument. We think birthers have faulty information and fallacious argument.
How can you say that you believe in the rule of law, and yet aren’t advocating for our cases to be heard in a court of law? The reason is that the law is not with you. The issue of standing that has derailed so many of your lawsuits is a constitutional requirement. To support the rule of law means that the birthers cannot use the courts the way they are trying to use them. I have never said that birthers shouldn’t get their day in court. If the law is with them, fine. However, I have read many, many court decisions dismissing birther lawsuits, and the judge is right on the law every time.
Why do you Obots support socialism? Obots don’t have any single political view. They range from Libertarian to Socialist and everything in between. I’m not a socialist myself.
Why do you hate the birthers so much? I don’t hate birthers, but some birthers can be pretty nasty at times, say vile things, make threats and get one angry. (Obots sometimes do the same thing to birthers.) What I hate is for innocent people to be smeared. Barack Obama may be the most smeared man in America today. That really bothers me.
How can you be so sure that you’re right? Because I have studied your side far more than you have studied mine. In my interactions with birthers, I find them extremely ignorant of the arguments against them. They have never hear of masses of information that contradict what they say.
I don’t know if this helps at all, but I wrote it, so there.