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Sheriff Joe’s universe may be shattering

It sucks to be Joe Arpaio this week.

imageFirst there is the Phoenix New Times story today (BANG!) by award-wining journalist Stephen Lemons, that opens up a big can of worms. It begins with some behind-the-scenes comments from Joe Arpaio suggesting that the birther investigation was motivated by fundraising, citing footage from a new film about Arpaio, The Joe Show, The New Times writes:

The most revealing part of Phoenix filmmaker Randy Murray’s recent documentary The Joe Show was a strategy meeting during Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s 2012 re-election campaign that included Arpaio, his top flack, Lisa Allen, Chief Deputy Jerry Sheridan, and campaign manager Chad Willems.

The group huddled in the back of a Fountain Hills restaurant to discuss how to spin Joe’s negatives — the misspending of more than $100 million, the deaths in the jails, the scores of millions in lawsuit payouts — for the public.

At some point, Arpaio’s “birther” investigation came up.  …

At the mere mention of the birther investigation and the future press event, Allen and Willems practically rolled their eyes.

Willems called the birther probe “nuts.”

Allen said the sheriff might as well go the press conference “in big ol’ clown shoes.”
Arpaio shrugged, literally.

“There ain’t gonna be no damage control,” Arpaio promised Willems. “You’ll get more money [in campaign contributions] than you’ll know what to do with.”

imageIt gets worse on that topic (read the New Times article), but we then are given some idea what the Universe-shattering investigation is all about. The Sheriff’s Office confirmed some kind of investigation was in the works, but not about the birth certificate. Informants tell the New Times that the investigation is about Eric Holder and federal judge G. Murray Snow, the one who is overseeing enforcement as a result of a lawsuit proving pervasive racial profiling within Arpaio’s Department. And then there is the Seattle scammer. Sources say that $100,000 has been paid to notorious con man Dennis Montgomery. When asked, both Arpaio and Montgomery declined to deny that they were working together.  You just have to read the thing to believe it.

Next there is the sad story of Maricopa County deputy Ramon Armendariz who appeared to be shaking down undocumented aliens.  He apparently committed suicide by hanging and cannot be questioned as to how widespread the misconduct was within the department, but perhaps these facts have a very different interpretation. Further, 900 hours of videos of traffic stops that were supposed to be turned over to the Court were found in his house. This story was widely reported by the national press. It certainly leaves a lot of questions and I’ll be interested to see how the story plays out.

And if that weren’t enough, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals released its decision on Monday, awarding $975,000 to former Maricopa County Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox in a lawsuit against Arpaio and other county officials for false arrest and prosecution, bringing the total to over $12 million for those cases.

Finally an investigation has uncovered evidence suggesting that Maricopa County Sheriffs Office personnel and equipment were involved in the production of Jerome Corsi and Mike Zullo’s for-profit eBook, A Question of Law Eligibility: A Law Enforcement Investigation into Barack Obama’s Birth Certificate and his Eligibility to be President. The book, copyrighted by Jerome Corsi and Mike Zullo drew initial criticism as some dollars rolled in to Mike Zullo for what many think should have been the property of the non-profit Cold Case Posse not for Zullo’s personal use. Zullo sidestepped that issue by claiming he gave the money to his church. Now the question is more difficult with County resources involved. This topic led me to review that book, and in the light of what we know now about the Obama birth certificate PDF file, it looks pretty bad. For details on this investigation, check out “MCSO Public Information Officer Brian Lee Helped Write ‘A Question of Eligibility’ eBook” at the RC Radio Blog.

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Sibley/Vogt revive old crock about Fuddy taking a bribe

Birther memes are immortal

imageButterdezillion, the fervent viewer of Hawaii state documents, went off on a tizzy last Spring over Loretta Fuddy’s state ethics financial disclosure forms, questioning a $50,000 amount of money that mysteriously appeared (according to her). Actually, the money just moved from one place on the balance sheet into another. There was a thread at the Free Republic, and I had a wonderfully alliterative article: “Fault found with Fuddy’s financial facts–fraud?” debunking the whole nonsense (thanks to the expert analysis of Butterfly Bilderberg).

An article of the Birther Creed is the immortality of the meme, and that well-debunked misreading of financial statements has come back under the auspices of Sibley/Vogt and their formerly sealed affidavit in the Washington State case, In re: Douglas Vogt (aka Vogt v. Obama) now before the Supreme Court (for a few more days). Sibley is reported to have disclosed to talk radio host Erik Rush, and that up and coming smear merchant Nathan Bickel gives us the transcript of what Sibley said.

Sibley gives further evidence that “forensic” does not mean what birthers think it does, saying:

additionally there’s some forensic accounting investigation of Loretta Fuddy’s personal finances which resulted in a disclosure that she received a substantial – I believe she received a $50,000.00 dollars in cash shortly after she verified the Obama’s birth certificate as being legitimate.

Birther forensic accounting is no better than their forensic document analysis, i.e., abysmally inept.

Taitz highlights Cold Case Posse inaction

In a new title on the Orly Taitz web site:

March 6, 2014, still no “Universe shattering” evidence which was promissed (sic) to be released in March of 2014 by Sheriff Arpaio and CCP director Mike Zullo after two and a half years of heavy fundraising for investigation. Demand from Arpaio and Zullo immediate release of evidence, if any, so Attorney Orly Taitz can submit it to judges in ongoing cases in MD, MS, DC and CA

Taitz published a comment [link to Taitz web site] from Brian Reilly who was instrumental in the original dealings between the Surprise Arizona Tea Party and Sheriff Joe Arpaio. According to WorldNetDaily, Reilly was the one who came up with the idea of approaching Arpaio after being impressed by a presentation to the Tea Party group by Jerome Corsi. In this comment Reilly says that the Posse is “using Internet radio talk show hosts to tease the public with the childish approach, ‘I know something you don’t know.’” Reilly also questioned the withholding of the Reed Hayes report.

Taitz and Zullo are natural enemies since they fight for the same birther PayPal dollars. Taitz highlights this (well I highlighted it, but …), and Reilly mentions in passing, “all of the financial donations that we have given to the non-profit Cold Case Posse.”

I characterize both Taitz and Reilly as saying to Zullo and his posse, “put up or shut up.” My own view is that they should just shut up because they are wrong, and no amount of additional time can change that.

Election leftovers: Conservative Majority Fund

I wrote an article titled “Birther PAC” in August 2012, abut the Conservative Majority Fund, a political action committee (treasurer Scott  B. MacKenzie) that in just one month spent half a million dollars on fundraising and robocalls  promoting birtherism. They produced the infamous video called “Shady Past.” I wrote then:

I’m no election law wonk, but it looks like their first donor report won’t be due until October 15, so the election will be upon us before we know where the money is coming from.

In that subsequent October report, the PAC had raised over $1.4 million and by years end the total had topped $2.8 million. The main expense: robocalls.

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Arpaio’s millions

The birthers seem to think that Sheriff Joe Arpaio raised $7 million in support of his investigation of Barack Obama, a veritable mandate for him to prosecute a case against the President. Here are two examples:

Give us Liberty 1776 blog:

URGENT: Sheriff Joe and the Cold Case Posse have successfully raised more than $7 MILLION dollars to fuel their law enforcement investigation of Barack Obama’s eligibility to be President of the United States after being compelled to do so by constituents concerned about the integrity of our ballots. And the Posse professionals [?] found evidence of systemic fraud, forgery, corruption and cover-up! Now, we are demanding that Sheriff Joe and the Cold Case Posse put their money where their mouth is and FILE A CRIMINAL COMPLAINT!

Orly Taitz blog:

Since Arpaio did not file a criminal complaint against Obama and refused to comply with subpoena and testify at trial, demand that he refund the public 7 million that he collected!

In truth, that money was raised for Arpaio’s re-election campaign. According to his campaign finance reports, not a nickel of that money went to investigating Obama.  Arpaio raised a total of $8,476,526.18 for his 2012 campaign, and reports spending all but about $300,000. The money is gone. If you expected your donation to go to the Cold Case Posse, you’ve been ripped off. If you want a refund, forget it.

You can read Arpaio’s complete campaign finance reports at the Maricopa County Recorder’s web site.

Rush plays the idiot, tells lie

We have campaign finance laws in the United States that prohibit political contributions from foreigners; if you make a political contribution, you’ll be asked to state that you aren’t one. This is also true when you buy merchandise from the Barack Obama store, including the insanely popular (just kidding) button pictured below.


Rush Limbaugh thought it ironic saying:

You have to prove your citizenship to buy one of those, because it’s a campaign contribution. I kid you not, folks. [My call screener Bo] Snerdley is in there laughing. He’s got fluids coming out of every bodily orifice in there laughing so hard. It’s true. They’re the ones out there selling all the birth-certificate stuff, trying to make money.

Limbaugh is lying. You don’t have to prove your citizenship; you just have to say so. And anyhow, Obama has already proven his citizenship. So, has anybody seen Rush’s birth certificate?