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BR v. BR

GerbilReportBirther Report (BR) has a new article up consisting of an email exchange involving Brian Reilly (BR). In an article titled “Cold Case Posse Initiator Reverses Course,” author George Miller exhibits an email exchange between Kevin “Pixel Patriot” Powell (is a pixel patriot like a keyboard warrior, only a lot smaller?) and Brian Reilly. I wanted to take a bit of what Powell wrote as an example of how confused birthers are about the facts and how they raise bogus objections.

The first item refers to the verification received by Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett from the State of Hawaii, one reason Reilly considers the Obama identity issue closed. Here’s what Powell said:

Dr. Onaka’s verification letter on May 22nd, 2012 did undermine the investigation to some extent but if you look at the circumstances in their entirety, it did not and should not have shut down the investigation which proceeded on many fronts beyond what you are privy to.

The first issue is the implication that Brian Reilly was not privy to the entire scope of the Cold Case Posse investigation; however, since there were only two people (Reilly being one of them) working on the investigation, it hardly seems credible for someone who wasn’t part of any of it (Powell) to make a claim that there were material things Reilly was not privy to. How could Powell know such a thing? If he could not know it, he must have made that claim up. Powell continues:

In reality, the so-called verification letter is missing two fundamental elements such as the name of the parents and the date of birth.

Without these, everything is suspect…

The article, to its credit, links to that verification. Powell claims that the parent’s name and date of birth, items which Powell calls “fundamental” elements, are not part of the itemized list of data elements that Dr. Onaka verified. How are they “fundamental”? Parents are irrelevant to presidential eligibility (no one ever alleged Obama’s father was an ambassador), and no one has ever suggested that Barack Obama was not at least 35 years old when he became president. So Powell is attempting to spin the non-critical items into something important. It is true that the itemized list doesn’t contain the two elements, but the verification also says:

Additionally, I verify that the information in the copy of the Certificate of Live Birth for Mr. Obama that you attached with your request matches the original record in our files.

Since the White House copy of the certificate includes the date of birth and parents’ names, the verification’s general matching statement verifies them too. For more on the verifications, see my 2012 article “Reverse engineering Dr. Onaka” and my 2013 article, “Onaka’s verification wording.” Further, the Bennett verification is not the only one.

Powell goes on to say:

…An honest evaluation undoubtedly demands full disclosure by the known liar waging war against the Constitution and the citizens of this Republic….

Given that Sheriff Arpaio has been sued by Obama’s Justice Department for abuses in his department, Arpaio is hardly the one to provide an unbiased evaluation, nor is Mike Zullo who has no specialization in law enforcement, beyond a short stint as a policeman in a small town 20 years ago, in any way qualified to lead, much less solely comprise the investigation.  Mike Zullo himself is a known liar, presenting a false race code table to the public and assuring his listeners that he had the original manual containing the codes. (He either lied about the content of the manual, or he lied about having it.) If an honest evaluation is to be done, Arpaio and his Cold Case Posse is one of the last places where it could be found.

Powell then states:

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie vowed to find Obama’s Birth Certificate but couldn’t produce it. Then, Gov. Abercrombie gave Dr. Onaka an award for modernizing the national vital statistics model law. Onaka also helped Hawaii implement EVVE as a Pilot state. The system can verify within 7 seconds whether a birth record is valid or fraudulent. Both AZ and Hawaii were early adopters of the EVVE System, yet Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett spent weeks exchanging emails with that same state registrar just so he could ask the question in the right way to get the “correct answer” while completely ignoring an official investigation by a sheriff that had declared it to be a forgery created by an act of fraud. The answer Sec. Bennett agreed to receive from Dr. Onaka did not include the date of birth, a critical component which was recommended to remain unchanged (p.59) in the national vital statistics model law because of the legal implications by the work group Dr. Onaka chaired for which he was given said award.

The claim that Abercrombie couldn’t find Obama’s birth certificate is bogus. Abercrombie was looking for some document he could release, and was told that by law he couldn’t release what they had.

Abercrombie giving Onaka an award is news to me. Did it happen? I couldn’t find such a thing. The Department of Health received an award from the Center for Digital Government (finalist in the Best of the Web contest), but that’s not from Abercrombie. The DoH received another award in 2007 (before Abercrombie became governor) from the same organization for its Electronic Death Registration System. Onaka received the Halbert L. Dunn award in 2008 from the National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems, and another NAPHSIS award in 2011 for his work as chair of the committee that produced recommendations for updates to the Model State Vital Statistics Act. None of these awards has anything whatever to do with Governor Abercrombie.

Powell alleges that Bennett could have simply used EVVE (Electronic Verification of Vital Events), an electronic system used by participating government agencies to check the validity of birth certificates under the Real ID Act. Powell correctly states that EVVE implementation was complete in Hawaii and Arizona (as of January of 2011). The technical specifications for EVVE are not public, and I didn’t take stuff home with me from my prior job in vital records. What I can say from the research that I have been able to do, is that it is within the realm of possibility that Ken Bennett might have been able to call some office in some Arizona state agency and after a long discussion of whether there was authority for what he was asking, been able to verify some limited set of information on Obama’s birth certificate electronically.

The problem with that approach, assuming it was permissible, is that the results are not certified by anybody. Can you imagine a Secretary of State certifying a candidate for president based on a screen print of some terminal at the DMV? :roll: EVVE verifications are nothing more than a computer-to-computer data match, not an official record. Further, it is highly unlikely that such data elements as the name of the hospital are included in the EVVE transaction. One paper on electronic birth registration systems in the EVVE context listed the following data items as “birth identification data”:

  • registrant’s name
  • date of birth
  • city, county, and State of the place of birth
  • gender
  • mother’s maiden name
  • father’s name
  • mother’s address
  • birth certificate number
  • mother’s Social Security number
  • father’s Social Security number
  • date filed

If that is the correct list, then EVVE could not have verified the following elements that Bennett asked of Onaka:

  • Time of birth
  • Name of Hospital
  • Age of Father
  • Birthplace of father
  • Age of mother
  • Birthplace of Mother
  • Date of Signature of Parent
  • Date of Signature of Attendant
  • Date Accepted by Local Registrar

That means that only 3 of the 12 items Bennett requested for verification might have been verifiable by EVVE. Powell’s entire complaint is bogus from start to finish.

Now, about the gerbils. Gerbil Report (as I now prefer to call Birther Report) trots out the gerbils, in this gratuitous image, courtesy of Barry Soetoro, Esq.:

Update:

In an email Brian Reilly responds:

Birther Report has published selected communications between myself and individuals who embrace the position that President Obama’s birth certificate is a forgery.  My goal was to tell the numerous people who were open copied in Gary Wilmott’s recent email that former MCSO Chief Brian Sands’ new exposé entitled "Arpaio, DeFacto Lawman" is available from Amazon.com as an e-book for $4.99. I hit the Jackpot when Birther Report chose to advertise the book for all to see.  In the memorable words of President George Bush:  "Mission Accomplished!"

Regards,
Brian Reilly

80

“Any day now” gets closer

It’s been a slow week and I am reduced to republishing Birther Report. One of them had the stomach to listen to Carl Gallups Freedom Friday program and this comes from that:

Carl Gallups: Been talking to Mike Zullo. Both the birth certificate and criminal investigations are still ongoing. Sheriff Arpaio is getting close to holding the press conference. They are in the process of getting over two legal hurdles so they can release some of the information. All sources and information must be extensively vetted.

So “any day now” becomes “getting close” and “getting VIPs on board” becomes “getting over two legal hurdles.” I wonder what those legal hurdles are. Could they be:

  1. No evidence
  2. No jurisdiction

Perhaps we will find out, any day now.

Homoerotic fetishism at Birther Report

“this thread needs more gay pictures”

When I saw the preceding comment this morning at Birther Report, I took it as coming from a troll, and while that may be true, Birther Report comments in general are known for their fascination with homoerotic imagery and excretory function. Not being gay myself, nor particularly interested in the details of gay sexual expression, a lot of what they talk about, directed at me, goes over my head.

I did, of course, understand the term, “Dr. Colostomy,” but I was completely mystified at why they kept mentioning gerbils in comments directed to me, at least until this morning when I looked it up.

image

I’m also called “Dr. Crunt” a lot, and one of the definitions of that word is a male genital reference. These guys live in a totally different world with a totally different vocabulary and knowledge base than mine, and frankly I am disgusted by their language.

What triggered this article, however, was what followed in the thread from the comment highlighted above, and that was a series of photos of me, or photos in which my face had been added, the most ambitious of which was this one from “Barry Soetoro, ESQ”:

The image from which this was altered, is one of Michelle Obama, and appeared widely on right-wing web sites as “proof” that she is really a transsexual man (named Michael). That image originated from Michelle Obama’s appearance as a speaker at the 2008 Democratic convention [video of the speech]. However, looking at the entire video, the alleged “object” bulging between the legs does not appear to be actually there and the video frame (if that’s what it is) itself may have been “enhanced.” I have never been able to find an original media source for that image of Michelle Obama.

Read more:

Counting Obots

Thanks to a commenter here for pointing me to a comment at Birther Report by a commenter named Rhodalicious. It’s the quote of the day now, and a longer version of this despairing remark about inactivity from the Cold Case Posse appears in the Quote Archives.

These days it can be hard to tell whether a commenter at a birther site is a birther being outrageous, or someone imitating a birther being outrageous, so I took a moment to look at the Intense Debate profile for Rhodalicious to get a sense of where they are coming from. I rather liked this one:

In about 5 billion years the Sun is going to run low on fuel. At that point, it will expand to become a "red giant" star, and its diameter will exceed the orbit of Earth, meaning that the Earth will be incinerated.

I’m hoping that Sheriff Arpaio and Mike Zullo will see fit to release their evidence at least a few years before then.

I found a pattern of frustration about the Cold Case Posse’s inaction, but I found something else more interesting: There is a screen shot from a profile page, I presume from The Fogbow, showing the number of users on the site. I won’t reproduce it here, but you can view it from the Intense Debate link. Someone had said, How many of them [Obots] are left these days — 6 or 8? The comment’s reply was that The Fogbow had more than 8000 posts in June and on the day he checked there were 1,247 users online in a 24-hour period. Rhodalicious notes that at least one person online (and I recognized others) was a birther.

Hagmann demands apology from Conservative media

I’ve only mentioned Douglas J. and Joe Hagmann a couple of times in the context of an birther interview they aired on their nightly Internet program on BlogTalkRadio, the Hagmann & Hagmann Report and their “Northeast Intelligence Network.” The father and son duo describe themselves as career investigators.

I don’t know which Hagmann is speaking in a new YouTube Audio  featured at Birther Report. But after listening to some of it, I wanted very much to write this article so that the previous article will scroll down from the top of the blog.

Hagmann demands an apology from the Conservative media for ignoring the birthers, now that they have been shown to be right all along. :shock: Well no, I don’t know how and where they have been proven right. Hagmann primarily engages in the birther gambit of burden shifting, claiming that no one can prove to his satisfaction the details of Barack Obama / Barry Soetoro’s biography. He reiterates that no one knows who Barack Obama is, although Hagmann is sure he’s a Muslim/Communist/Marxist, and defends that clashing list. Hagmann doesn’t know because he refuses to look at the excellent biographical material available.

Hagmann has some notion that Obama’s education was funded by the Saudi Finance Minister, the evidence for which he says consists of some bread crumbs. He asks the leading question: how could some one like Obama have gotten into an elite school without a backer? (I think that was a crumb.)

So the meat of this article, such as it is, addresses that question. The simple answer to the question of how Obama got into elite colleges is that he went to an elite high school, Punahou Academy. The Wall Street Journal listed Punahou Academy as one of the top feeder schools for the most selective colleges and universities in the nation. How did he pay for it? Financial aid and student loans.

How did Obama afford to go to that very elite private high school? That has a simple answer too: financial aid and the sacrifices of his grandparents.

The Conservative media has a lot of things to apologize for, but dissing the birthers is not one of them.

Congressman questions IRS Commissioner about Obama’s birth certificate

Rep. Lloyd Doggett of Texas questions IRS Commissioner John Koskinen about the lost Lois Lerner emails and other things:

Doggett: I believe that there has been a long-term commitment to hamstring, to encumber, to underfund the Internal Revenue Service, and discredit it, and the whole concept of progressive taxation in this country. Now let me ask you, to the seriousness of this investigation, and sir, have you ever been in Benghazi?

Koskinen: No.

Doggett: Do you know if you or Ms. Lerner have ever had any responsibility for anything having to do with Benghazi and our embassy there?

Koskinen: No.

Doggett: How about Area 51 out in Roswell, New Mexico, where all those space aliens allegedly came. Have you ever had any responsibility for that?

Koskinen: No.

Doggett: Have you ever had custody of the President’s birth certificate?

Koskinen: No.

Doggett: Well, Commissioner, I believe one of the mistakes you’ve made in dealing with the Committee today is that you did assume professionally this was a serious inquiry. I believe it is an endless conspiracy theory that’s involved here that is being exploited solely for political purposes. I don’t approve of Ms. Lerner. I don’t approve of the way the IRS handled all these matters. But I think there is a much larger cover-up issue here. And it is the desire of our Republican colleagues cover up these purported social welfare organizations that don’t want to disclose the secret corporate campaign contributions that they rely on to pollute our democracy.

H/t to Birther Report.