Monday, September 19, 2016


...about Trump's claim that, birther-wise, it was Hillary all along, and the brethren's rush to go "that's right, boss, I seen it with my own eyes." Give 'em credit: at least they shovel shit snappier than Chris Christie.

One thing that struck me as I paged through my scrapbook of birtherism bullshit was how closely the Trump of today resembles the Trump of 2011. Get this, from Mediaite five years ago:
 “I always give my credentials," [Trump] told Rivera, "I like to give credentials. I’m a really smart guy. I’ve always been a really smart guy," noting that he had [gone] to "one of the best" schools in the world, apropos of nothing.
We actually thought Trump's reflexive solipsism was weird once upon a time! Ah, young and innocent days.

Among the outtakes: Not wanting to clutter it up too much, I didn't mention that among the "proof" rightbloggers, and the Trump campaign itself, are offering of Hillary's Real Birtherism is the long-available Mark Penn memo to the Clinton 2008 campaign, which mainly portrays Obama’s cosmopolitanism as a Clinton competitive advantage (“not at his center fundamentally American in his thinking and his values”), explicitly stipulates that “we are never going to say anything about his background,” and never claims he was born outside the U.S.

For obvious reasons, rightbloggers are trying to portray this slightly sleazy tactic as birtherism. For example, The Daily Wire's Ben Shapiro applauds Trump for his “Trolling Master Class” and judged his Hillary birther claim “at least partially true.” In evidence of this, he cites a report by colleague John Nolte, called "Hillary Invented Birtherism: 11 Things the Media Won't Tell You." (Spoiler: "The Media" already told you, and they show no such thing.)

Nolte also alludes to Clinton’s “questioning [Obama] ‘lack of American roots,’ her focusing on Obama's exotic ‘foreignness’” — which is a little closer to the truth. It’s also closer to Ben Shapiro in 2011, when he called Obama “a member of the same global community that despises America and tolerates Islamism, that slams American consumerism and praises Chinese communism, that rips evangelical Christianity while ignoring Muslim-imposed clitorectomy” — which, he said, was why “Americans are desperately seeking an answer to a simple question: why does President Obama appear to be so un-American?"

I guess, by the Hillary standard, Ben Shapiro qualifies as a birther, too -- which is awkward for him, since it's just gone out of fashion!

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