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This is your brain on birthers

Sometimes I attempt to get inside the heads of birthers. If this were a television show, the narrator would be saying about now, “do not try this at home.”

Certainly I can understand the desire to be distinctive, special. Birthers think that they are in a unique group that knows the truth, that are awake, and are not fooled by the government, media, nor by popular opinion. It’s an attractive idea to be “in the know.” Mike Volin is the image in my mind right now, and perhaps that is because he gets a little “inside hints” from the Cold Case Posse. Volin, Gallups and who knows how many other people, like [mumble] who paid for Reed Hayes, fall into that category.

It’s also attractive to feel like you’re making a difference and supporting an important cause. This is harder to understand because birthers haven’t made any difference and it’s hard to imagine how they could think otherwise. Trying too hard resulted in this:



We’re patched

A number of WordPress plug-ins have been found to have security issues of late, including the WPTouch feature that reformats this blog for mobile devices, reports ZDNet.

I am very aggressive in installing updates and patches on this blog, to maintain the stability of the site and to provide the safest browsing experience I can for my readers. When the story about WPTouch broke today, I had already put on the patch.


Outage notice

The blog will be unavailable for up to 15 minutes sometime between 6 PM and 9 PM Eastern Daylight Time (UTC –4) July 16. This is for server software upgrades.

It’s my flag too!

MyFlagThe United States was a grand experiment and like all human endeavors, it did some things right and some things wrong. As an American, I tend to focus on what we did right and paint in my mind a tradition of positive evolution from the Founding Fathers to the present (with just missteps from time to time).

I consider myself patriotic. The last time I pledged allegiance to the “flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands” was this past July 6  and I expect to pledge at least once more this month. When I make that pledge, my allegiance is directed to the goal of making the United States a “more perfect union.”1

I admit that I typically don’t make a big deal of patriotic images and I don’t wear my patriotism on my sleeve (or my lapel). I have a flag on display in my study, as shown in the photo above and my father’s burial flag is also in a place of honor. MonktonInFlagThere is also a flag on the right sidebar of this blog.4 That flag is on the blog for the same reason that this article is being written, to assert that it is my flag, and that the American flag is not is owned by any faction, particularly the extreme right wing, who like to paint themselves as the only true patriots, and to wrap TaitzFlagScarfthemselves in the flag. I don’t suppose Lord Monckton1 would consider himself an American patriot, but even he plays dress-up with the American flag. Orly Taitz3 is perhaps more tastefully dressed for an anti-immigrant protest at Murrieta, California, this past July 4, but Taitz is not exactly following American founding tradition. The United States, as originally envisioned by our Founders, did not have an illegal immigration problem. In fact it was not 1875 that the United States even had an immigration law. Up until that time, anybody could come without restriction. After that time prostitutes and convicts were no longer welcome. Soon to follow were restrictions on the Chinese.

From the start, America had it’s share of conspiracy theorists, anti-government activists, and political dirty tricksters5, so I can hardly say that the birthers and others I oppose are unentitled to their own piece of that American tradition. I just want the country to move in a nobler6 and more enlightened direction than they do. My own desire is that we find liberty and justice for all, and not just for some.

1Preamble to the United States Constitution.

2Monkton interview following address to Tea Party meeting in Phoenix, Arizona in 2012.

3This photo is cropped from a series of photos that originally appeared at the Taitz web site, but were subsequently deleted.

4While I really like the flag image on the blog, I am looking to replace it with some photo I took myself.

5See, for example, The United States of Paranoia: A Conspiracy Theory.

6Part of the Civitan Creed (I’m a member) states:

MY PLEDGE: to practice the Golden Rule and to build upon it a better and nobler citizenship.

We report: you decide to read more

Many articles on this site report stories that originate on other web sites. Unlike certain web sites that consist of wholly copied articles from other sources, I believe that those who generate content have a right to benefit from it. I don’t want to copy other people’s work—even if I reword it. They deserve the web traffic, the publicity and the advertising revenue.

So when you see an article about some topic (like the most recent one on the Mississippi runoff controversy) with links to sources, you should expect that I am probably giving the subject cursory coverage and that you will miss important details if you don’t follow the links to read more. What I am trying to do is to make readers aware of the topic, summarize some of the main issues, and I hope provide enough information for the reader to decide whether they want to follow up and get more information.