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Birthers are depressing

I mean it. I look at some of these web comment threads full of vigorously asserted nonsense. I see hatred and bigotry rampant and it’s depressing, palpably depressing. It’s depressing because it’s hopeless at least in those microcosms of web sites. I got a nonsense right-wing chain email from a friend today. It was depressing too. Two minutes on Snopes showed it was all made up.

Some of this is of no consequence, but when a large part of the Congress is made up of climate change deniers, real harm could be done. Are millions of Americans going to lose their health care in 2017?

At least my mood lightens when I come here.

5

Persistence

Birthers are nothing if not persistent. There are several videos at YouTube where a particularly odious birther posting under the name of ford5522 comments. He doesn’t reply in a materially significant way, but he does reply in a way that I might call a negative robotic style. Whatever you say, he calls it lie and throws back an insult. ford5522 claimed that Obama’s birth certificate number is wrong and I replied, saying that ford5522, nor any of his birther ilk, had any experience with vital records, where I had 30 years’ experience. I said that the certificate number was normal. He replied:

ford5522

+Kevin Davidson LMAO !  So you really have zero idea or any experience of how the certificates are numbered ! To put in terms you retards can understand !  YOU LIED !    LMAO !   Trying to make yourself out to be more then what you are !   Or give yourself credentials you don’t have ! SURPRISE  !  Not one person was fooled ! This Obama clown brigade 101 !  LMAO !    I agree there are people that know things . You are not one of them !  You are no more then a clown repeating what other clowns told…

This guy has been commenting on those videos for months. I stopped replying in general a long time ago, but I still get the Google alerts, and occasionally I make a comment, and when I do, ford5522 is right back at me.

I am reminded of The Fogbow’s motto: “Falsehoods unchallenged only fester and grow.” I contrast that to another approach: “you get nowhere beating your head against a brick wall.” I guess the wisdom is knowing which situation you’re in. In the case of ford55522, I go with the brick wall.

23

Slander

The birther movement is quite a phenomenon in its size and longevity. Since the very beginning I have tried to understand it under various models. What has come to mind of late is the concept of slander and this is how I would put it:

People prejudiced against Barack Obama justify their prejudice by slandering him, and in turn they justify their prejudice against anyone connected with Obama by slandering them too.

The original source of prejudice, I believe, is either racism or bias against anyone not on the right politically. Racism still remains stigmatized in the minds of most Americans, so racists have to come up with some other justification, such as calling Obama other things (noting that there’s noting “wrong” with some of these):

  • Ineligible (foreign born)
  • Ineligible (not a natural born citizen because of his father)
  • A forger
  • A liar
  • A Muslim
  • A Communist
  • Gay
  • A foreigner

And by extension, Obama’s parents, grandparents and wife come in for their own slander. The State of Hawaii, it’s constitutional officers, and the Department of Health have been demeaned. Members of Congress are called traitors for not doing anything. Even bloggers and others who criticize birthers have come in for their share. I got this mild example through the Contact Form a few days back:

[B]efore I read this I thought Obama was the biggest liar in the world but now I see I was wrong. He’s tied with you. If you have kids you’re helping to insure they have no future in America.

When I replied asking what I had lied about, the writer evaded the question. I replied:

You have sent me several emails, but you have yet to identify any falsehood or immoral act on my part. It seems to me that your perception of “terrible” is based on prejudice rather than fact.

Slander is deeply offensive to me in all of its manifestations. Combatting it is one of the things that keeps me blogging.

This is not an article

I am reduced to writing about the internal squabbles at Gerbil Report™ and re-hashing the old lies of Mike Zullo and his imitators. So I ask you, the reader of this non article, if there is something you think deserves investigation or commentary? Do you have a paper you would like published?

I should add that while I’m not writing blog articles much, I am spending a huge amount of time with OARPA technical projects. The new server is supposed to arrive March 8 with possibly 3 more by the end of the year.

Blog business

It appears this blog got hacked, back in 2011. I ran a security scan a little while ago, and it picked up two files that were suspicious, and indeed they were files that weren’t supposed to be there. The file date was from 2011, when this blog was running at another hosting company. I deleted the files, but I doubt they were doing anything still.

A vexing problem for me is spam user registrations. I have no idea why they do it, but there are dozens every day. I installed a plug-in that is supposed to stop this, including all sorts of puzzles and CAPTCHA’s—totally ineffective. Today I put in a new plugin called “STOP SPAM” that is not only supposed to stop spam comments (not much of a problem here) but also spam user registrations. A new version just came out and I’m impressed and so far no spam user registrations. It even has a security scan. Winking smile

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