Somewhere in this world, there is a database record created in November of 2009, encoded in bits and bytes, that has contains the name “Harrison J. Bounel,” the address of President Obama’s house in Chicago and the social-security number President Obama used on his 2009 Income Tax return and his 1980 Selective Service System registration. In another record in some database there is an entry for Barack Obama with the date of birth “1890” (and others with his correct date of birth, and one or more with the month and day switched).
From this, the birthers have spun the theory that Harrison J. Bounel was a real person, born in 1890, who got a social-security number in the 1970’s in Connecticut, immediately moved into a Hawaiian nursing home, and died. Barack Obama, so they say, then started using that social-security number for some unexplained reason.
Despite efforts by the birthers who are real private detectives, none of the details of the theory have been verified. For example, no other trace of anyone named Harrison J. Bounel has ever been found, living or dead, in Hawaii or Connecticut, or anywhere else. He’s not in the US Census records. He’s not in the Social Security Death Index. He’s nowhere except that one singular database entry. Bounel is not associated with the date “1890” in any record, but the birthers nevertheless adamantly insist that’s when he was born.
I wouldn’t even mention this loony theory except that I’ve been bombarded with it in comments over at WorldNetDaily from people who firmly believe it’s true. Let me bring up some objections to the theory:
- If Harrison J. Bounel were a real person, he should have left more records behind. If he died in Hawaii, he’d be in the public Hawaiian death index.
- The Bounel database record was created in November, of 2009, when someone born in 1890 would have been 119 years old.
- It’s a notable coincidence that Bounel appeared in a record with Obama’s social-security number just one month after Orly Taitz published the President’s social-security number on the Internet (meaning that anyone could have learned of it, along with Obama’s name and public home address).
- Obama used the social-security number for 30 years, filing income taxes with the IRS (who verify numbers with names and dates of birth) without any problem.
- The Social Security Administration has said in court filings that they don’t have any records for a Harrison J. Bounel born in 1890.
What is more amazing about this birther theory is that the theory itself doesn’t account for its central evidence, the database record. The database record itself doesn’t provide so much as a clue as to what it is a record of, nor where it came from, and the birthers don’t even have a speculation that explains it. If Bounel actually existed and was born in 1890, he was most certainly dead in 2009 and not creating database records. Obama would never use Bounel’s name. So if Obama didn’t do it, and Bounel didn’t do it, there really only remains two options: the record is a mistake or it is fraudulent and from some third party, and if that is the case why are we even having this discussion?
So I offer the birthers two challenges:
- Prove that Harrison J. Bounel, born 1890, existed.
- Provide some scenario, plausible even by birther standards, that explains the database record.
Put up or shut up.