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The birther “Peter Principle”

Peter Principle (birther version): A birther will dig into the details of the President’s long-form birth certificate image until they reach their level of incompetence with electronic documents, and then declare it a "forgery."

Completing a complex argument is hard work. In a mathematical proof, there is no room for skipping a step. The proof is either complete and fully justified, or it is nothing.

Giving up short of the mark is what I see in birther image analysis. Birthers start out to prove something, not to learn the truth, but putting that aside what they do is to look and look and look at the birth certificate that the White House released until they find something that they don’t understand. Now none of these guys really knows the details of how compression algorithms work. None of them even knows exactly what compression algorithm was used by the White House. Nevertheless, they start with some knowledge, they may search on the Internet for more, and they may do experiments; but ultimately they come upon something that they do not understand. The unbiased observer when stumped just says, “I don’t know.” Birthers, as the ultimate biased observers, when they reach an impasse declare victory and assign the desired conclusion to what they do not understand: forgery. That is the essence of birther image analysis: rising to their own level of incompetence and then claiming victory, an inevitable outcome of the methodology when you think about it.

Then they fall back on the defense of asking others to prove them wrong. Proof doesn’t work that way.

37 Responses to The birther “Peter Principle”

  1. avatar
    J.D. Sue April 5, 2013 at 6:01 pm #

    A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

  2. avatar
    Hermitian April 5, 2013 at 7:06 pm #

    And all of this drivel from an Obot who just “assumes” that Obama is eligible.

  3. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy April 5, 2013 at 7:29 pm #

    That’s OK, Hermy. I just “assume” your comment was made by a human being, rather than a PHP script that makes up random nonsense. 🙄

    Hermitian: And all of this drivel from an Obot who just “assumes” that Obama is eligible.

  4. avatar
    misha marinsky April 5, 2013 at 7:36 pm #

    Hermitian: And all of this drivel from an Obot who just “assumes” that Obama is eligible.

    Our Constitution holds that the burden of proof is on the accuser. That’s you and your lynch mob.

    You have to prove he is not. Obama was elected twice; we don’t have to prove anything to you. If you are unhappy, go live with fascists like Orly Taitz on the West Bank.

    Once again: Settler leader calls democracy an obstacle to Israel’s higher calling
    Veteran settler leader Benny Katzover: ‘We didn’t come here to establish a democratic state.’

    http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/settler-leader-calls-democracy-an-obstacle-to-israel-s-higher-calling-1.407490

  5. avatar
    justlw April 5, 2013 at 8:23 pm #

    Hermitian: And all of this drivel from an Obot who just “assumes” that Obama is eligible.

    I just “assume” that the GOP governor of Hawaii, in the midst of vigorously campaigning in 2008 on behalf of the McCain/Palin ticket, was not inexplicably putting herself in danger of jail time in order to cover up for Obama when she reported that the particulars of his birth had been accurately reported by her administration. Yes, that’s only one of the many wacky assumptions I have made over the last few years.

  6. avatar
    Nobody Home April 5, 2013 at 8:51 pm #

    The prez offered an internet pdf as evidence.
    Internet pdfs are not evidence.
    You’re a fool if you want to accept it.

  7. avatar
    Dr Kenneth Noisewater April 5, 2013 at 8:54 pm #

    Hermitian:
    And all of this drivel from an Obot who just “assumes” that Obama is eligible.

    You really have been whiny as of late. You ran from Amazon again and now you’re crying here. We don’t have to assume he’s eligible he is the President.

  8. avatar
    Hermitian April 5, 2013 at 9:06 pm #

    We have proof. You have nothing.

  9. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy April 6, 2013 at 12:21 am #

    You have that backwards, and you’re still banned.

    Hermitian: We have proof. You have nothing.

  10. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy April 6, 2013 at 12:22 am #

    The certifications send by Hawaii to Arizona and Kansas are proof. You’re a fool not to accept it.

    Nobody Home: The prez offered an internet pdf as evidence.
    Internet pdfs are not evidence.
    You’re a fool if you want to accept it.

  11. avatar
    Lani April 6, 2013 at 12:57 am #

    Birfers are too boring, with their endlessly recycled disproven nonsense. We need a new conspiracy, birfers! You’re becoming (even more) irrelevant. Get to work! Time to up your entertainment value!

  12. avatar
    Monkey Boy April 6, 2013 at 4:52 am #

    Nobody Home:
    The prez offered an internet pdf as evidence.
    Internet pdfs are not evidence.
    You’re a fool if you want to accept it.

    Amen! A reproduction of a document is not THE document. The PDF of the President’s BC is not the legal document–it is an image of the same to show the information on it.

    Therefore, it is pointless to get bogged down in argument with idiots who claim that artifacts and/or anomalies on the PDF prove that it is forged. That’s playing on their soccer pitch.

    Officials in Hawaii have verified that the information displayed on the PDF is the same as the information on the actual document. End of story.

  13. avatar
    Nobody Home April 6, 2013 at 7:51 am #

    You’re not skeptics;
    you’re succor for obama.

  14. avatar
    Boogiebach April 6, 2013 at 8:01 am #

    Hermitian:
    And all of this drivel from an Obot who just “assumes” that Obama is eligible.

    I don’t remember any other president being asked for the sort of proof folks demand from Obama. Or endless lawsuits on the same topic. I didn’t vote for Clinton but I accepted that he was my president. Didn’t vote for the second Bush. But accepted his legitimacy, too. And, yes, even though I don’t like all his policies or where he stands on all the issues, Obama is my president for the next few years. Birther “proof” has been rejected by court after court. Time to move on. Don’t like his policies? Find someone who has policies you like and help him or her win in 2015.

  15. avatar
    Yoda April 6, 2013 at 8:21 am #

    Doc, I have one problem with your article-it assumes that birthers are honestly trying to look for the truth.

  16. avatar
    john April 6, 2013 at 9:51 am #

    Doc,
    It’s funny you should mention Peter and “Birthers”. Here is the real connotation of “Peter” when it comes to birthers:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8w-9dcfkT0A
    Sellouts who distance themselves from the birther topic are just like Peter denying Christ.

  17. avatar
    SluggoJD April 6, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

    Hermitian:
    We have proof.You have nothing.

    President Obama is the most powerful man in the world. He can fly anywhere in the world at any time, with fighter jets by his side, pilots willing to die to protect him. He can eat anything he wants, even at 3 AM. He can call any world leader in the world at any time. He can get on your TV any time he wants, whether you like it or not. And he will be President for 45 more months.

    Wow, what a guy!

    And then there is you. Stupid, crazy, pathetic, ugly, hateful, worthless piece of dog vomit. And you’re gonna be like this for at least 45 more months.

    Wow, you suck!

  18. avatar
    SluggoJD April 6, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

    Nobody Home:
    You’re not skeptics;
    you’re succor for obama.

    Dude, seek immediate mental treatment.

  19. avatar
    SluggoJD April 6, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

    john:
    Doc,
    It’s funny you should mention Peter and “Birthers”.Here is the real connotation of “Peter” when it comes to birthers:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8w-9dcfkT0A
    Sellouts who distance themselves from the birther topic are just like Peter denying Christ.

    Awesome, a little comedy relief on this fine Saturday morning!

  20. avatar
    misha marinsky April 6, 2013 at 12:58 pm #

    john: like Peter denying Christ.

    Do you mean Jessica Christ? The Story of Jessica Christ – By Tony Hendra

    http://www.amazon.com/National-Lampoon-December-1971-Volume/dp/B000J2ET06

  21. avatar
    Rickey April 6, 2013 at 4:32 pm #

    Nobody Home:
    The prez offered an internet pdf as evidence.
    Internet pdfs are not evidence.
    You’re a fool if you want to accept it.

    Wrong. He showed an actual, certified long-form birth certificate from Hawaii to reporters. Savannah Guthrie held it and photographed it. Then the White House made a pdf copy of it and posted it on the Internet.

    The White House won’t let you examine the original because of the likelihood that you will leave Cheeto dust all over it.

  22. avatar
    Steve April 6, 2013 at 4:47 pm #

    Nobody Home:
    The prez offered an internet pdf as evidence.
    Internet pdfs are not evidence.
    You’re a fool if you want to accept it.

    Well, can you think of another way that would allow everyone in the country to see it?

  23. avatar
    misha marinsky April 6, 2013 at 4:48 pm #

    Nobody Home: You’re not skeptics; you’re succor for obama.

    Why, thank you. I try every day.

  24. avatar
    nbc April 6, 2013 at 5:06 pm #

    Nobody Home:
    You’re not skeptics;
    you’re succor for obama.

    What is it with people and spelling?… Do they really want to be the source of much irony?…

  25. avatar
    nbc April 6, 2013 at 5:07 pm #

    Steve: Well, can you think of another way that would allow everyone in the country to see it?

    The document was also introduced in several legal cases and to various committees that would hear objections.

    The fact that there exists a PDF and the verification by the DOH of HI of all the relevant information, certifies that President Obama is indeed born on US soil and thus a natural born citizen.

    It’s really that simple.

  26. avatar
    nbc April 6, 2013 at 5:10 pm #

    john:
    Doc,
    It’s funny you should mention Peter and “Birthers”.Here is the real connotation of “Peter” when it comes to birthers:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8w-9dcfkT0A
    Sellouts who distance themselves from the birther topic are just like Peter denying Christ.

    Christ was all about truth, birthers not so much…

    Perhaps a better description is that those distancing themselves from the birther topic are following in the path of our Lord? We Christians abhor ‘false prophets’…

  27. avatar
    nbc April 6, 2013 at 5:23 pm #

    Hermitian:
    We have proof.You have nothing.

    Yes, we have a document that shows, as officially certified by the Registrar of the Department of Health of Hawaii, that our President was born on US soil.

    That’s all we need really.
    There is no proof that contradicts this other than speculative analysis of a derived document.

    Follies, pure follies… Which explains why no charges have been, or will be filed.

  28. avatar
    Yoda April 6, 2013 at 5:32 pm #

    Here is everything you will ever need to know about birthers;

    They hate the President SO much that they are willing to shred the full faith and credit clause of the United States Constitution on the word of a used car salesman.

  29. avatar
    Andrew Vrba, PmG April 6, 2013 at 5:55 pm #

    Yoda:
    Here is everything you will ever need to know about birthers;

    They hate the President SO much that they are willing to shred the full faith and credit clause of the United States Constitution on the word of a used car salesman.

    Some of them hate the President so much, that they would gladly turn their guns at, and fire on, their fellow Americans, if it meant a chance at removing him from office. According to Patrick’s latest blog, some of them were arrested in an attempt at starting an armed coup.

  30. avatar
    nbc April 6, 2013 at 6:00 pm #

    Andrew Vrba, PmG: Some of them hate the President so much, that they would gladly turn their guns at, and fire on, their fellow Americans, if it meant a chance at removing him from office. According to Patrick’s latest blog, some of them were arrested in an attempt at starting an armed coup.

    Really? Such fools…

  31. avatar
    Dave B. April 6, 2013 at 6:31 pm #

    I can think of a more apt one.

    john: Here is the real connotation of “Peter” when it comes to birthers:

  32. avatar
    Thomas Brown April 6, 2013 at 9:05 pm #

    Yo, SluggoJD…. Don’t sugar-coat it! Tell ’em how you REALLY feel!

    Seriously, birthers… You want evidence? Here’s some you just provided: Birthers who post here (and everywhere else) can’t spell, and we Obots can. That is direct, tangible, quantifiable evidence that we are smart and you are stupid.

    Now, there’s no shame in bring stupid. But when an unbiased observer is trying to figure out who is correct, he will go with the smart guys every time.

  33. avatar
    Lupin April 7, 2013 at 5:57 am #

    SluggoJD: And then there is you. Stupid, crazy, pathetic, ugly, hateful, worthless piece of dog vomit. And you’re gonna be like this for at least 45 more months.

    Wow, you suck!

    Why are we insulting dog vomit?

    That man could only aspire to rise to the level of dog vomit.

  34. avatar
    Northland10 April 7, 2013 at 7:37 am #

    nbc: What is it with people and spelling?… Do they really want to be the source of much irony?…

    Either that, or he is saying we are help/relief for Obama. That’s not much of an insult.

  35. avatar
    SluggoJD April 7, 2013 at 11:29 am #

    Lupin: Why are we insulting dog vomit?

    That man could only aspire to rise to the level of dog vomit.

    LOLOL

  36. avatar
    misha marinsky April 7, 2013 at 1:32 pm #

    SluggoJD: worthless piece of dog vomit

    Lupin: Why are we insulting dog vomit?

    As an expert in cleaning up after Angel and Max, I can tell everyone that what those two barf up is clearly superior to anything that comes from the mouth of a Denialist.

    OT: Yesterday, Max threw-up the biggest hairball I have ever seen, along with everything else in his stomach. Yummy!