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Thomas Lamb 15 minutes of fame next week

Thomas A. Lamb of Alaska sued Barack Obama and Mitt Romney in 2012 to get disclosure of records, student loan records form Obama and tax returns from Romney, as reported by the Joe Miller “Restoring Liberty” blog. Lamb cited a 2010 Alaska case where the personnel records of a Senate Candidate were ordered released by a Fairbanks judge and a case in another state about divorce records for Jack Ryan. This lawsuit was totally off my radar, although NBC had an article.

Lamb has an appeal before the Alaska Supreme Court and the birther calendar had his oral argument listed as for today; however, it appears that his 15-minute appearance is scheduled at 9:00 AM on January 15. No attorneys are listed for the case of Thomas A. Lamb v Barack Obama (leading me to assume that appellee Obama didn’t respond and indeed the Court indicated that it hadn’t received a timely reply form him).

Lamb’s case against Obama and Romney demands a range of documents from  candidates Obama and Romney, based on his claimed right to be an informed voter. The original case was filed before the 2012 election. An amended complaint was filed after the election, dropping Romney and adding Obama’s birth records. The case was dismissed for the usual lack of standing, lack of subject matter jurisdiction and failure to state a claim upon which relief could be granted. And there was some kind of problem with service.  Lamb petitioned for review of the case to the Alaska Supreme Court and that petition for review was denied as moot a year ago (January 4, 2013). Indeed, one can see how that after the election, Lamb’s need to be an informed voter evaporated and his remedy (getting the records) no longer applies. Lamb failed to reply to the Alaska Supreme Courts order that he explain why it shouldn’t be denied as moot, and so it was. The present appeal (S-15155)  is of the same original case.

There is some peculiar language in the amended complaint, none more so than:

Article 1 to the federal constitution is controlling the Plaintiff’s right to redress Congress through a Congressional inquiry and the use of this court to ascertain the facts herein.

Article I, of course, doesn’t give anyone the right to redress Congress, but rather the right to petition the government, and there is nothing in the Constitution requiring the government to respond, nor are the courts a legitimate vehicle for a private citizen to obtain an investigation.

I present this catalog of birther stuff Lamb bases his doubts on (and I am omitting many things that are irrelevant):

  • Sally Jacobs at the Boston Globe said that the Obamas spoke of putting Barack up for adoption (not sure why that’s relevant).
  • Indonesian school registration
  • Only Indonesian citizens could attend school (not true)
  • Obama said he was an “Indonesian prince”
  • Allen Hulton (the postman) said Obama was a foreign student.
  • There is a claim that Obama’s birth certificate is forged
  • Hawaiian law regarding adoptions, and sealing of the original records.

If I had to list the reasons why, from where I set as a non-lawyer, why this appeal is

DOOMED!

  1. It is well-established in law that the constitutional right to petition the government does not require that the government accede to the petition.
  2. There is no general constitutional “right to know.”
  3. The Full Faith and Credit clause does not grant someone the right to obtain a protected record from another state, even if a similar record is available in their own state. As far as I can determine birth records are only open in Alaska after 100 years anyway. Education records are closed everywhere by Federal law.
  4. Contrary to Lamb’s unsourced assertion, Indonesian law does not restrict school attendance to Indonesian citizens.
  5. Lamb never alleged sufficient facts to infer that Barack Obama was adopted by his step-father, or was ever an Indonesian citizen (and Obama denied this in another case).

If I had to sum up the complaint, Lamb is saying that he has a right not to be confused by the birther controversy. He has my sympathy for being confused, but not my support in the way he attempts to resolve it.

Read more:


1Ah, the dreaded empty chair™ again.

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19 Responses to Thomas Lamb 15 minutes of fame next week

  1. avatar
    The Magic M January 8, 2014 at 9:23 am #

    About the 2010 case:

    The judge said that about 30 of the documents being sought would not be released. Twice that number would be redacted.

    I bet birthers wouldn’t have been too happy about that.

    Also, it seems that birthers, especially Orly in her FOIA requests, still believe they are somehow entitled to the vault originals of said documents.

    Even if Lamb somehow prevailed, the best he’d get is another certified copy from Hawaii (and a lot of stuff that would not tell him anything with regard to eligibility). A Pyrrhic victory in any case.

  2. avatar
    Andrew Vrba, PmG January 8, 2014 at 10:09 am #

    Please refresh my memory. Is this that nutter who claimed that the judge who ruled against him wasn’t qualified to do so, because she’s female? Or am I thinking of someone else?

    The Magic M:
    Even if Lamb somehow prevailed, the best he’d get is another certified copy from Hawaii (and a lot of stuff that would not tell him anything with regard to eligibility). A Pyrrhic victory in any case.

    Birthers are so desperate right now that they’ll accept any kind of victory they can get! I recall seeing at least one inmate at birther reports saying that merely symbolic victories are somehow enough to further their cause.

  3. avatar
    Dave B. January 8, 2014 at 11:36 am #

    That was General Jedi Pauly, wasn’t it?

    Andrew Vrba, PmG: Please refresh my memory. Is this that nutter who claimed that the judge who ruled against him wasn’t qualified to do so, because she’s female? Or am I thinking of someone else?

  4. avatar
    The Magic M January 8, 2014 at 12:09 pm #

    Andrew Vrba, PmG: symbolic victories are somehow enough to further their cause

    As in “we didn’t get tarred and feathered, so we MUST be right somehow”? ;)

  5. avatar
    The European January 8, 2014 at 12:40 pm #

    Well, it must be Gods hands who ordered the divorce papers of then candidate for the Senate of Illinois, Ryan, to be unsealed. It was possibly the most important step for BHO in his quest for the Presidency.

    And they were worth reading !

  6. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 8, 2014 at 2:18 pm #

    That was another guy from Alaska, Gordon Epperly.

    http://www.obamaconspiracy.org/2012/02/racist-ballot-challenge-in-alaska/

    Andrew Vrba, PmG: Please refresh my memory. Is this that nutter who claimed that the judge who ruled against him wasn’t qualified to do so, because she’s female? Or am I thinking of someone else?

  7. avatar
    Rickey January 8, 2014 at 6:53 pm #

    Actually the 2010 Alaska case had to do with Joe Miller’s employment records when he was a public sector employee, not divorce records. One can certainly make a case that at least some of a public employee’s personnel file is public record. In New York State, for example, the salary of every state and local government employee is a public record which can be viewed on the Internet.

    I fail to see how the Alaska Supreme Court would be in a position to order anyone to release any of Obama’s records.

  8. avatar
    Northland10 January 8, 2014 at 7:48 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    That was another guy from Alaska, Gordon Epperly.

    http://www.obamaconspiracy.org/2012/02/racist-ballot-challenge-in-alaska/

    Dave B. mentioned Pauly, who has posted articles by Epperly on his blog, so he was half correct. As for Lamb, wasn’t he the one who decided to serve the defendants via Twitter?

  9. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 8, 2014 at 8:43 pm #

    Lamb cited two cases, one was about divorce records in California, but the one I linked to was personnel records and I mislabeled it — now fixed.

    Rickey: Actually the 2010 Alaska case had to do with Joe Miller’s employment records when he was a public sector employee, not divorce records.

  10. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 8, 2014 at 8:55 pm #

    Mr. Lamb tweeted:

    @DrConspiracy when u post make sure something wasn’t postponed. Or when something is denied it wasn’t done at request of plaintiff. Ur15min

    Reading carefully, one will see that my comment about the case being postponed was stated in relation to the Birther Calendar, not the Court calendar. It’s worded that way because I wasn’t sure.

    I was unable to figure out his last tweet. I invited him to comment on the article here.

  11. avatar
    Dave B. January 8, 2014 at 9:38 pm #

    I’ve been reading G.J.P.’s objection to Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson. He says she doesn’t have “proper authority to make any rulings or judgments on the case in question”; while he’s at least as hung up as Epperly on the “U.S. citizen State citizen male father” hoodoo, it appears he was mostly concerned that she was an Obama nominee, and not that she’s a woman. Besides that, he says “It terrifies Guthrie that a person of such mental incapacity and seemingly dishonorable intentions and character who obviously lacks the ability to perceive facts of Nature that are essential in order for a judge to do the job of a judge, can be in such a position of authority as to be permitted by law enforcement and the courts to overthrow the United States government and Constitution and commit any crime against the citizens under U.S. law with impunity.”
    He says she “does not accept objective reality and facts of Nature or the Constitution or criminal codes to be guiding upon her reason or judgments or limiting upon her authority,” so he’s downright terrified of her, and he objects to ANYTHING she does.
    It’s a very entertaining read, especially compared to the late antebellum Mississippi Supreme Court cases I’ve been reading lately. At least the absurdity in his case doesn’t result in institutionalized oppression.
    (Sorry, I edited the link out. It looked like trouble.)

    Northland10: Dave B. mentioned Pauly, who has posted articles by Epperly on his blog, so he was half correct. As for Lamb, wasn’t he the one who decided to serve the defendants via Twitter?

  12. avatar
    Rickey January 8, 2014 at 9:43 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    Lamb cited two cases, one was about divorce records in California, but the one I linked to was personnel records and I mislabeled it — now fixed.

    I see. The divorce case involved the Jack Ryan Senate campaign in Illinois. Illinois is a bit of an anomaly regarding divorce proceedings because the Chicago Tribune reported that divorce records are public records in Illinois. It appears that a party to the divorce has to petition the court if he or she wants the divorce records sealed. In New York State all divorce cases are automatically sealed and it requires a court order to unseal them – a court order which is rarely granted in my experience.

    So Lamb has cited an Illinois ruing which in all likelihood has no applicability to Alaska.

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/chi-0406180364jun18,0,169467.story

  13. avatar
    Notorial Dissent January 9, 2014 at 10:40 am #

    For a case, which in all likelihood has no applicability to anything real.

    Rickey: So Lamb has cited an Illinois ruing which in all likelihood has no applicability to Alaska.

  14. avatar
    realist January 9, 2014 at 10:40 am #

    “Thomas A. Lamb of Alaska sued Barack Obama and Mitt Romney in 2012 to get disclosure of records, student loan records form Obama and tax returns from Romney (as reported by the Joe Miller “Restoring Liberty” blog). ”

    And as I recall, never properly served either.

  15. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 9, 2014 at 12:59 pm #

    The title of this article has been updated.

  16. avatar
    gorefan January 9, 2014 at 3:55 pm #

    realist:

    And as I recall, never properly served either.

    IIRC, he tweeted them or posted on his/their Facebook page.

  17. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 9, 2014 at 8:08 pm #

    This article has been largely rewritten with a good deal more information.

  18. avatar
    John Reilly January 10, 2014 at 1:11 am #

    The Ryan divorce was in Los Angeles, and the sealed records were unsealed during the campaign.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeri_Ryan

  19. avatar
    dunstvangeet January 11, 2014 at 2:27 am #

    Well, there’s another few problems.

    Even if what they alledged was true, it would still be irrelevent to whether or not Barack Obama is eligible. The Supreme Court has ruled that the actions of a parent cannot give up the citizenship of the child, and that the only way to have someone renounce their citizenship would be to show up at a U.S. Consulate, and actively denounce their citizenship, which the state department would not allow a 6-year-old to do.