Thursday, July 30, 2009

BIRTHER -- WITH AN EXPLANATION. We have officially entered the age of the crypto-birther. Andrew McCarthy livens the pages of National Review -- where birtherism was allegedly debunked but, we can see by now, is merely the birthplace of its new cover story -- with new schtick. The first part of McCarthy's con job -- a yap about how Barry wouldn't let us call him Hussein even though he's a big fat Muslim, what a liar -- is almost like a primer for the New Birtherism: it's not the (we're not saying it's a) crime -- it's the cover-up! And then, the literal nut graf:
The editorial desire to put to rest the “Obama was born in Kenya” canard is justifiable. The overwhelming evidence is that Obama was born an American citizen on Aug. 4, 1961, which almost certainly makes him constitutionally eligible to hold his office.
Almost certainly! But -- QUESTIONS REMAIN! Later, "This certification is not the same thing as the certificate," etc.

Some of the brethren hear the dog-whistle loud and clear: Marathon Pundit, while affecting distance from the conspiracy ("I believe that Obama was born in Hawaii"), nonetheless is convinced by McCarthy's penetrating analysis to demand, "Okay, Barry, cough it up. Let's see your birth certificate."

See, he's not one of those nuts: he has the good sense to quote the magazine that rebutted the birthers before going birther himself.

You can have the bow-tied twit version from Roger Kimball who, while declaring himself "sick of the Obama birth certificate wheeze," gets quickly to the "and yet, and yet..." His alleged concern is Obama's mendacity -- proven by third-hand accusations that Obama inflated his resume regarding his job at Business International Corporation; why, he was merely a "junior copyeditor"! -- which leads Kimball to assert that Obama has "consistently misled the public about his personal history." I mean, if a man will lie about his first job out of college, what won't he lie about?

I think Doghouse Riley said it well in comments to the last post on this:
"Full of shit" doesn't cover it. The phrase suggests a world in which being full of shit would be contraindicated, where anyone of sound mind would avoid it, in which "shit" would lie in opposition to "gold," or "delicious snack cakes," or, metaphorically, Facts, and where one would try one's damnedest to avoid being filled with shit... That is, it's a real-world phrase, and Real is not the world these people inhabit, and hasn't been for a long time.
They're hard at work on a sort of homemade mind trick that will allow them to simultaneously denounce and disseminate fraudulent information. It's thoroughly transparent to normal people, but at least it will help hold the thicker fellow travelers who are either embarrassed by birtherism or wondering why the White People's League hasn't stormed the White House with a rope.

UPDATE. Someone named Mark Joseph has turned this nonsense into a Zen riddle: "The only thing weirder than the Birthers are the anti-Birthers, who blame the Birthers for being conspiracy theorists yet actively feed the conspiracy by refusing to call for President Obama to release his birth certificate." This is very symmetrical, and suggests the obsessively concentric artworks sometimes created by mental patients. He also claims "most Americans" are "beginning to wonder why the president doesn't put this one to rest once and for all" -- a fond hope, certainly, which regrettably comes without polling data -- and compares Obama to Mark Sanford. Do these guys even know any normal people?

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