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Poe's law

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Feb. 6th, 2012 | 01:54 pm
mood: amusedamused

From the "surely-you-can't-be-serious department"... it's probably a well-known fact that birthers are batshit insane, but even I didn't expect them to be THIS insane:

On Friday, February 3, 2012 the death knell of America the Beautiful tolled across the fifty states and around the world. An administrative judge in the state of Georgia rewrote the Constitution and ruled in favor of putative president Barack Hussein Obama declaring him a Natural Born Citizen and eligible to be on their state ballot. Our rule of law is no more. Our Constitution is no more. Obama, Soros, state media, activist judges and all the ‘powers that be’ of a New World Order sealed our fate. The United States is a land of liberty no more.

You'd think that this whiny, hand-wringing concoction of quacking fruitloopery and turgid pomp is the work of an exaggerating parodist, perhaps a writer for The Onion, that nobody could REALLY write this in earnest — but you'd be wrong.

They're serious. And don't call them Shirley.

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Comments {23}

Mikazo

(no subject)

from: mikazo
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 02:17 pm (UTC)
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The unfortunate side to it is that, provided Obama is in fact a US citizen, there is no way he can conclusively prove it and put the issue to rest because anyone can claim the birth certificate is a digitally altered forgery. For this reason it is equally impossible to prove or disprove anything else. Those photos I took of those UFOs are not "proof" because I could have photoshopped them. Thus the birther debate is going to continue as long as he is in office.

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 07:23 pm (UTC)
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It certainly is going to, yes — and even if it weren't for the possibility of digital alteration, I'm sure there'd always be someone who'd make the claim that any document or any piece of evidence, no matter what, was forged.

Of course, that's ignoring the standards of proof, though. Concepts such as "beyond all reasonable doubt" exist for a reason; but OTOH, conspiracy theorists of this sort tend to realize that the evidence is compelling, anyway, and then invoke grand and elaborate conspiracies to explain why it can't be trusted precisely *because* they know this. And anyone who tries to convince them that they're wrong either drank the Kool-Aid or is themselves part of the conspiracy.

The end result is that no actual argument and no evidence of any kind matters: these people aren't trying to deduce the facts, they already know The Truth™.

It's the same principles that drive cults, too.

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tzisorey

(no subject)

from: tzisorey
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 02:47 pm (UTC)
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Somehow I find todays XKCD relevant to this.

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 07:23 pm (UTC)
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This? Sort of, yes. ^^

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The Mystery of the Supranational Rabbit

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from: porsupah
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 08:09 pm (UTC)
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"Baa ram ewe, baa ram ewe.." =:)

Birthers really are the gift that keeps on giving, epitomised by that episode's star, the dentist-cum-lawyer, Orly Taitz.

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 08:34 pm (UTC)
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That's one way of putting it. :) It's the kind of gift that gives you an intense desire to scrub yourself when you've looked at it for too long, though — just reading about how crazy these people (first and foremost "ORLY?" Taitz herself) really are is enough to make you feel soiled.

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Ysengrin Blackpaw

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from: ysengrin
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 04:24 pm (UTC)
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I think it's telling that I've yet to see a non-Caucasian birther ...

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 07:27 pm (UTC)
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Aye — or anyone who's complained about McCain's being born on a military basis in the Panama Canal Zone. Can't have anything to do with the fact McCain's a) white and b) a Republican, I'm sure.

Maybe such people do exist, but I've never seen one. Thinking about it, I also think I've never seen one who said "I actually agree with Obama's politics, but I'm concerned about this nonetheless". Or, in fact, anyone who said "I used to think that Obama wasn't a genuine citizen of the USA, but the documents he provided convinced me otherwise".


Edited at 2012-02-06 07:27 pm (UTC)

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Party Rabbit

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from: redlemon
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 10:02 pm (UTC)
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There was one other US president that had his citizenship questioned, way back in the late 1800's. I forget which president, but before Obama, he was the only one.

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 10:28 pm (UTC)
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Wikipedia suggests it was Chester A. Arthur. Interesting, I didn't know it'd ever come up before.

Of course, my own feelings about the matter are that the "natural-born citizen" clause should be abolished entirely; if someone's a citizen, it shouldn't matter whether they're "natural-born" or not; the clause may have had its uses once (although I'd argue that the fact that no similar requirement exists for any other office undermines that), but these days, it's just a relic. Equal rights for all citizens. ;)

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Heretic!

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from: shereth
date: Feb. 7th, 2012 05:21 pm (UTC)
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FWIW : http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/11/us/politics/11mccain.html

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 7th, 2012 06:00 pm (UTC)
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Oh, very interesting. The legal analysis seems sound, actually, although I agree with Chin that it is preposterous that such technicalities could make a difference (in fact, I think that these days, the whole "natural-born" requirement should be abolished and every citizen treated equally), and with Spiro's assessment that it won't make a difference one way or another.

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Party Rabbit

(no subject)

from: redlemon
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 06:49 pm (UTC)
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The saddest part isn't that we have such crazy people. The sad part is that people give them a voice (radio, television) and give them some kind of credibility.

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 07:39 pm (UTC)
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Aye. :/

I often think that it's quite sad that people like these regularly constitute the public face of the USA; not just birthers specifically, but insane people in general, like (say) the homophobes. Some homophobia is probably to be expected, and as long as it's just Phelps and his extended family, you can pretty much ignore it as the rants of an idiot, full of sound and fury and signifying nothing, but it actually seems much more widespread. Stories such as this one from the Rolling Stone are quite telling: it's easy to think that all the USA's an open and tolerant melting pot that embraces differences, but there's many people that are worryingly narrowminded and hateful.

Which isn't to say that all the USA is like that, BTW, and that's just my point — I think the decent folks outnumber the hateful ones, probably by large amount, but the latter are still abundant enough to make the news; they're not just a few idiots that literally everybody else is embarassed about, they're a major part of society. It would be unthinkable for anyone, especially a politician, to be openly racist in the USA, yet open and virulent homophobia is far from uncommon, to the point where one of the two major parties is largely homophobic (to varying extents).

For someone like me who's watching this from the outside, there's no real difference between (existing) open and widespread homophobia and (hypothetical) open and widespread racism, though. And the same's true for others, and it shapes the way that the USA is seen — and then I always think that I feel sorry for all the decent people who do exist and who're usually forgotten.

I really think the USA (in terms of society and population, not necessarily the conduct of the government) are a better country than they're often given credit for.

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Party Rabbit

(no subject)

from: redlemon
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 10:00 pm (UTC)
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You bring up an interesting point. That the US is made up of mostly good citizens, with a few bad apples and media that gives them attention. What disturbs me are how many of those good "live-and-let-live" Americans who are just complacent to the whole thing. They don't speak out. They don't call out racism/sexism/homophobia/etc. They just somehow expect it as a way of life because it doesn't affect them personally. (Of course then, the irony is that many Americans do consistently scream that the Muslims don't speak out against their bad apples.)

And as for our government, it's sad to see how complacent we really are if we let some of these fools into office. Or what criteria we use for voting. Or, heck, what government seats are fraudulently obtained.

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 10:34 pm (UTC)
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Aye. :/ As they say, all that's necessary for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.

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fargowolf

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from: fargowolf
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 09:39 pm (UTC)
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I guess some idiots can't accept that they have an African American for President. He's provided more than enough legal proof that he is indeed an American Born Citizen.

Looks like the second link you provided has been removed, which isn't surprising. I get the feeling that link was put up by low level wannabe white supremacists.

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 6th, 2012 10:55 pm (UTC)
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Mmm, it's still working for me — very slow, though. Perhaps the site's overloaded.

(Which in turn may mean that lots of people are linking to them, which in turn may mean lots of ad views, which in turn may be the reason why this whole piece of claptrap was posted in the first place.)

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kobolds

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from: kobolds
date: Feb. 7th, 2012 03:23 am (UTC)
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"while a May 2011 Gallup poll found that doubts persisted among 13% of Americans and 23% of Republicans"

Because Americans and Republicans are different races?

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 7th, 2012 10:37 am (UTC)
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I think they mean US-Americans in general, regardless of political persuasion, and those that identify as Republicans specifically.

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Whitefang Greytail

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from: whitefang
date: Feb. 8th, 2012 10:17 pm (UTC)
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And going by extrapolation, we can't conclude that 57% of the USA are Republicans? :P

But that thought amused and scared me for a moment.

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Schneelocke

(no subject)

from: schnee
date: Feb. 8th, 2012 11:15 pm (UTC)
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And going by extrapolation, we can't conclude that 57% of the USA are Republicans? :P

Nope, you actually can't conclude that. Fortunately. ;)

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kobolds

(no subject)

from: kobolds
date: Feb. 10th, 2012 01:14 am (UTC)
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I know, on the one hand that is pretty obvious, but on the other it gave me a really good giggle.

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