Oral Argument in Paige v State of Vermont, et. al.

Thanks to a reader named William Rawle who provided an audio file of the oral arguments in Paige v State of Vermont, et. al. before the Vermont Supreme Court that were conducted on November 30, 2016. Vermont resident H. Brooke Paige had challenged the eligibility of Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and two other candidates in the Vermont 2016 presidential primary. Paige unsuccessfully challenged President Barack Obama with a similar lawsuit filed during the 2012 election cycle.

Posted in Ballot Challenge, Birthers | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

A Typical Day in the Life of President Trump

donald-trump-spars-with-univision-journalist-jorge-ramosI was catching up on the news while sipping my morning coffee a few hours ago. I had just finished a breakfast of homemade corned beef hash that Mrs. RC had made using some left over corned beef from our traditional St. Patrick’s Day corned beef and cabbage. Believe me I will never go back to the stuff in a can again.

Anyway, back to the news…

The first three stories I ran across all uniquely show what an unqualified and pathetic human being this loser Trump is. First there was Trump himself still trying to defend his bald faced lie that President Obama wiretapped Trump Tower. He was taking questions from a few members of the press following an embarrassing meeting with German Prime Minister Angela Merkel. Trump tried to joke that he and Merkel were both spied on by Obama.

Meanwhile his mouthpiece Sean Spicer continued to defend the claim citing previously  discredited news articles. Leaders on the House Intelligence Committee held a press conference to say that there is exactly zero evidence to support Trump’s claim. Another article said the White House had issued an apology to the British government for repeating claims the a British spy agency had worked with President Obama to spy on Trump. However, when German reporter asked Trump about the story he denied they had apologized. He said they had merely repeated a story run on Fox. Trump often uses this excuse when caught in a lie. He never takes responsibility for vetting anything he reads or hears about.

In the second article I read that Trump was holding a meeting this weekend with some wealthy hospital CEO buds at his Mar-A-Lago resort in Florida to discuss veterans health. However, he apparently failed to invite his Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Here is a video of Trump asking VA head David Shulkin if he is attended the meeting. (Shulkin awkwardly shakes his head no when Trump asks if he is going).

Later in the evening after Trump arrived in Florida the meeting was abruptly cancelled. What a clusterf*ck!!

Finally, there was an article about Trump’s reclusive Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. Tillerson is on a trip to Asia and was attending an event in South Korea. Yesterday reports circulated that Tillerson had skipped events like dinner with South Korean officials due to fatigue. However, Tilelrson later denied those reports claiming that he was not invited. Tillerson had been criticized for taking the unprecedented step of excluding the press from his Asian trip. Instead the State Department decided only to take reporter Erin McPike from the Independent Journal Review, a four-year-old conservative news site. And McPike is not acting as a pool reporter for other news services.

So we don’t really what’s going on with Tillerson. Either he skipped out due to fatigue or the South Koreans snubbed him. Apparently, Tillerson doesn’t think we need to know how or Secretary of State is representing our interests. He can hardly hide his distaste for the media.

So that was all in one day. I didn’t even mention TrumpCare, the train wreck of a health care bill working its way through the House that will never pass in the Senate. Nor, did I mention the second failed executive order on immigration that has been stayed by at least two courts.

In a normal world any one of these stories would merit would headlines about the incompetence of the administration. However, we live in the world of Trump where these this is just a typical day. SNAFU* I believe is the term the military uses to describe situations like this.

I still have to wonder what the people who voted for this idiot were thinking? Any rational person could see he was a fake, a petty loser, and was unfit to serve. What the hell were they thinking?

*SNAFU = Situation Normal All F*cked Up
Posted in Barack Obama, Trump | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Have groups like the Tea Party soiled the word “Patriot” beyond repair?

we-need-an-actual-teabagger-emoticon-someone-please-fix-this-one-for-submission-to-hans-3130I think it is legitimate to ask this question. Conservative groups like the Tea Party “Patriots” and the Sov Cit “Patriot” movement love to use the word to refer to themselves. Some of the first Tea Party demonstrators in 2009 even wore tri-corner hats adorned with tea bags hanging from them. (Some called themselves teabaggers but dropped the term when they learned it had another meaning.) [See COMALiteJ’s comment below. It seems at least some in the movement knew the raunchy meaning of the term and used it to describe what they were going to do to some politicians and liberals.]

So just what is a patriot? Merriam Webster tells us the word “patriot” is derived from the Medieval French patriote for “compatriot”, Latin patriota, and ultimately from the Greek term patria from pater or patr- meaning father or male lineage. It defines patriot as “one who loves his or her country and supports its authority and interests“.

During the American war for independence the term Patriot came to be used to refer to the colonists who rebelled against Great Britain. They were first referred to as Whigs or Patriot Whigs because they politically aligned with the Whig Party in England. This was as opposed to the Loyalists or Tories who favored remaining under British rule.

Thus “patriot” and “patriotism” acquired a somewhat uniquely American meaning over the years. It referred to pride and support for America and its democratic values. Patriotism was strongest when America and our freedoms were under threat. No one would dispute that patriotism was at a peak during World War I and even more so during Word War II. These were times we put away our petty differences and got behind our country as one. Everyone was willing to sacrifice. Hundreds of thousands paid the ultimate sacrifice.

So what happened to patriotism and how did the word “patriot” get hijacked by  conservative right wing political ideologues? Walter Rodgers wrote about this in his 2010 article in the Christian Science Monitor entitled The right wing’s perversion of patriotism.

Rodgers wrote:

It once was a given that you did not discuss religion or politics in polite company. To this list, I would add “patriotism.” It has become the new secular American religion, so mercurial that we cannot even agree about what it is.

It is regrettable that a once healthy American patriotism has morphed into intolerant jingoism. Love of country has been hijacked.

It once was a given that you did not discuss religion or politics in polite company. To this list, I would add “patriotism.” It has become the new secular American religion, so mercurial that we cannot even agree about what it is.

It is regrettable that a once healthy American patriotism has morphed into intolerant jingoism. Love of country has been hijacked. …

How did a quiet “love of country” morph into an aggressive right-wing, warlike chauvinism?

Indeed.

I think the hijacking of the term “patriot” can be traced to the 1960’s and the Vietnam era. America found itself involved in the most unpopular war in history and a young generation of baby boomers went to the streets to protest. Their parents, who came from the World War II generation, reacted in horror as the younger generation rejected the notion of “my country right or wrong” and openly questioned authority on many fronts.

As it turned out we know the younger generation was right about the war in Vietnam. Their government was lying to them and knew it was unwinnable. No matter though. The backlash to the anti-war movement provided a winning strategy for the Republican party beginning with Nixon and continuing to this day. They hijacked patriotism and the symbols if patriotism as their own. If you were against them you were somehow unpatriotic.

I can remember one particularly gaudy display of this strategy during the 1988 campaign when then Vice President Bush held a campaign rally at a flag factory in New Jersey. Talk about “wrapping yourself in the flag”.

In 2009 following the inauguration of President Obama something called the Tea Party movement arose. There is now a good bit of evidence the Tea Party movement was not a grass roots movement as it portrayed itself but instead was an AstroTurf movement funded in part by the Koch brothers.

Many Tea Party groups began calling themselves Tea Party Patriots. There web pages were full of references to the American Patriots from the revolutionary war days. Of course the name they chose referred to the Boston Tea Party of 1773, which was a reaction to the Tea Act. The modern Tea Party members adopted the name because they saw themselves as “anti-tax” like those who dumped 342 crates of tea from three ships into Boston Harbor on December 16, 1773.

However, like many things the modern Tea Party would get it wrong. The original tea party protesters were in effect protesting corporate welfare. The Tea Act that they were protesting against gave a huge tax break to the failing East India Tea Company (probably the original “too big to fail” corporate entity). This tax advantage was opposed by American tea merchants and smugglers like John Hancock who helped start the revolt. None other than George Washington opposed the Boston Tea Party and other “tea parties” that were subsequently carried out.

It was not the tea party but the British [over] reaction to the tea party that subsequently drove some of the colonists to take up arms against the Crown. Parliament passed a series of laws that the colonists referred to as the Intolerable Acts, which reduced or removed the power of self government in Massachusetts in reaction to the tea party vandalism. Thus the first tea party movement was more about self government than taxes.

So who are these Tea Party “Patriots” and are they really more patriotic than all the rest of us? The Tea Party has never been distinguishable from the right wing of the Republican Party. It is an amorphous movement with no central leadership other than the commonality of a handful of conservative groups funding them. They are primarily white middle and upper class Republicans who want lower taxes and small government. They hated Barack Obama and the diversity in American politics that he represented. As a matter of fact many of them were Obama Birthers. They despise the less fortunate, especially minorities. They are largely conservative Christians and believe in the Biblical view of creation over science.

In general they are anti-science and anti intellectual. The don’t believe climate change is real. They think that left to their own designs corporations will protect the environment. They think that universities are teaching their children to be liberals. They are anti-immigration and especially against immigration from non-western European countries. They believe the economy is much worse than it really is. They believe in conspiracy theories like Birtherism even when not supported by any facts at all.

They form the core group of Donald Trump’s support. They were the first block of Republicans to back Trump. They overlook or even applaud his ties with Russia because they think Putin is a strong leader. They support Trump’s attack on the press and the First Amendment because they think the media is corrupt. They ignore the fact that the reality is that most of the media is right leaning and had a great deal to do with destroying Hillary Clinton for imagined crimes and permitting Donald Trump to squeak through in the electoral college while losing the popular vote.

They believe women should be subservient to men because that is how they interpret the Bible.  That is why they put up with Trump’s debasing statements about women. They strongly oppose women’s rights and probably secretly admire Trump’s use of women as objects of pleasure.

They claim to believe in small government but believe the state has a right to control a woman’s reproductive system and prevent gun manufacturers from being sued.

So are these folks more patriotic than the rest of us? I think the answer is obvious. They have hijacked and dirtied the term to the point that it may be beyond salvation. I think it is worth trying though. A good start is pointing out that the Tea Partiers are not patriots. They are political hacks.

[Edit: I meant to close with this thought. A good rule to follow is that if someone has to call themselves a patriots over and over it is a good bet they are not. ]

Posted in Barack Obama, Birthers, Donald Trump | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

Petition to Explain Why President Donald J. Trump Is Such a Needy Little Bitch Is Trouncing Lakin Petition

A petition that asks the White House to explain why President Donald Trump is such a needy little bitch is gathering signatures at a rate more than double that of the petition to pardon Terry Lakin. I don’t plan to go into a detailed analysis of why this is so but it does send a very loud and clear message.

birtchAs of this morning the Lakin petition has 839 signatures and the Needy Little Bitch stands at 1987. The Lakin petition was started two days earlier on January 21 and is already half way through the 30 day period it has to gather 100,000 signatures. For those readers who are math challenged that is 0.8% of the goal necessary to obtain a response.

Updated 2/2/2017: While the Lakin petition will probably hit 1000 today the Needy Little Bitch petition will top 6000. The trouncing is getting even worse.

[Updated 2/12/2017] The thin skinned weenies at the Trump White House pulled the petition on Tuesday as it had passed over 6000 signatures. The stated reason was for terms of service violations. Meanwhile the Lakin petition has gained a little steam but is still only at 4000. It stands no chance of gaining the 100,000 signatures needed to merit an answer. For comparison a petition asking for the release of Donald Trump’s tax returns has gathered 651,000 signatures.

Posted in Birthers, Donald Trump, Humor, Trump | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

As Terry Lakin Petition Fails Miserably Supporters Like Sharon Rondeau Just Don’t Get It

lakin-guiltyOn January 21 long time Birther Gary Wilmott created at petition at the WhiteHouse.gov web site to have Terry Lakin reinstated into the Army and have his pay and pension restored.  The petition needs 100,000 signatures in 30 days to receive an answer in 60 days from the White House. That’s unless Trump has issued an executive order to change that. As of this writing the petition is falling short. It has 292 signatures. That means only 99, 708 to go! (I refuse to link the silly petition here.)

Rondeau even devoted an entire article to the momentous event that the ex Cold Case Posse lead Mike Zullo had signed the petition. I have no idea what was newsworthy about the fact that a fired volunteer posse member had signed an obscure petition but apparently Rondeau thought it was headline worthy.

Sharon Rondeau at the Post and Email blog has been pushing the petition incessantly  When the petition drew only 74 signatures in the first 5 days Rondeau speculated that there had to be a technical glitch because the petition should have had “hundreds or even thousands of signatures” by that date. As we can now see that was absurd.

Today Rondeau wrote: “A petition launched on January 21 by Gary Wilmott on behalf of the former Lt. Col. Terry Lakin shows 295 signatures as of this writing, although it is suspected that thousands more have signed.” Rodeau gave no evidence to back up her claim that thousands had signed.

These folks just don’t get it. The ex-COL Lakin wasn’t charged and convicted because he asked to see a copy of President Obama’s birth certificate. He was convicted for disobeying and order to deploy. He was convicted because he defecated on his military oath. He was convicted because he let down his fellow soldiers. Telling the same lie over and over doesn’t make it true.

Rondeau also seems to have forgotten that Lakin pleaded guilty to violating article 92 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) (failing to meet with a superior officer and failing to report to duty at Fort Campbell). Lakin admitted what he did was wrong. He pleaded not guilty to the more serious charge of missing a movement but was convicted by his fellow officers on that count too.

Lakin cried like a baby during elocution and was eventually sentenced to 6 months confinement with loss of rank, pay and benefits. He was lucky that friends had talked  him into ditching his original attorney Paul Jensen who had allowed him to commit the crimes in the first place for a more experienced military attorney Neal Puckett. Puckett guided Lakin through the sentencing phase and helped him get off with six months confinement vs. a potential three year sentence.

But Wilmott, Rondeau, Charles Kerchner and the others want everyone to forget all that and let Lakin back in the Army. So how would you feel about serving with Lakin? Do you think you could trust him with your life? If Lakin were to get a pardon it won’t be because of a silly petition signed by a handful of Birthers.It will be because Lakin might have a connection through conservative channels through people like Margaret “Ducky” Hemenway who was a Lakin spokesperson during his trial and held a position as a Defense Department Congressional liaison during the George W. Bush administration.

Maybe it would be a good thing for Lakin to reinstated and returned to his old unit. Some of Lakin’s former soldiers might enjoy having him back in so that could hold a welcome home blanket party for his Blue Falcon ass.

Posted in Birthers | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

Case Closed on the Cold Case Posse

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AZ Central

MCSO Sheriff Paul Penzone held a press conference yesterday to discuss his 100 day plan for the department. He said the emphasis would be on crime prevention, training, crimes against children, reducing opioid abuse, and preventing fraud and scams against the elderly. His plans however will not include the Cold Case Posse or  Mike Zullo.

Penzone said the Cold Case Posse is being  disbanded and formal notices are going out to the members that “they no longer have the right to represent this organization or an extension of it”. Ouch!

Penzone made it clear that the days of staging publicity stunts like his predecessor loved to do were over. He also said he put together an advisory task force headed by former Arizona Attorney General Grant Woods to look at whether it is viable to keep Tent City in operation or should be shut down.

The disbanding of the Cold Case Posse officially ends the 64 month long investigation in which the Posse  tried unsuccessfully to prove that President Obama’s long form birth certificate released in April 2011 was a forgery.

NBC12 Report on Prenzone’s Press Conference

Posted in Barack Obama, Birthers, Cold Case Posse | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

I just sent this email to Sharon Rondeau at the Post & Email

Ms Rondeau

Since you will not permit me to comment on your blog I will send you this correction.

Your article titled “Media Continues Blackout of Birth Certificate Forgery Conclusions” contains this inaccurate statement:

However, the White House never released a “piece of paper.” The only item proffered was a PDF image on its website, while papers distributed to reporters afterward were revealed to be simply reproductions of a jpeg image photographed by the Associated Press.

A four page handout was distributed to reporters was at the press “gaggle” conducted by Press Secretary Jay Carney on the morning of April 27, 2011. The gaggle was held before the President spoke. The handout contained these items:

  1. A copy of the Obama birth certificate issued by Hawaii in 2007 to the Obama campaign.
  2. A copy of the letter from Ms Judith Corely to the Hawaii Department of Health requesting on behalf of President Obama a policy waver and for them to issue the long form version of the birth certificate.
  3. A copy of the reply letter from Director Loretta Fuddy granting the waiver.
  4. A copy of one of the two certified birth certificates that Ms Corely carried back from Hawaii.

Upon receiving his copy of the handout AP White House photographer J. Scott Applewhite quickly used his professional grade digital camera to take a photo of the copy of the LFBC and uploaded the image to the AP Washington bureau. I exchanged emails with Mr. Applewhite and he confirmed this sequence of events. His exact words to me were that “I just acted as a human copy machine”. Some reporters also saw one of the two certified copies with the embossed seal that Mr. Carney had brought to the gaggle. Savannah Guthrie from NBC took a photo of it with her cell phone camera. The seal is quite visible.

So your statement that the “White House never released a piece of paper” is completely wrong. I am not sure what you expected the White House to do. Did you expect them to obtain hundreds of certified copies from Hawaii and give one to every reporter?

You also omitted several key facts from the same article. First Mike Zullo’s evidence from the first two press conferences has been debunked. Even he now admits that I and others who contended that the layers and other anomalies that were the primary evidence of forgery presented at the first press conference were instead the result of a normal process of scanning a paper document on a Xerox WorkCentre office copier/scanner.

We also know that the race codes that were the centerpiece of the July 17, 2012 press conference were incorrect and that they displayed a slide that contained codes from a 1968 vital statistics manual. They were different in 1961. This error speaks to the quality of the investigation.

Now after five years of a failed investigation an entirely new theory was presented at the final “press conference” held on December 15, 2016. I placed press conference in quotes because reporters were not allowed to ask a single question. In your article you quoted Mr. Zullo:

“There is no way those reporters left that room thinking this was nonsense. I could tell by their faces. At the first two press conferences, there were rolling eyes, but that didn’t happen here.

“As I said in the press conference, this had nothing to do with politics for me, and we have presented it in a way that we believe is irrefutable and hardly a ‘debunked’ investigation.

“With all of those reporters in that room, the story has yet to be told. They know how damaging it is, and they do not want to report the findings to the public.”

It’s nice that Mr. Zullo could read their minds and know what the reporters were thinking without allowing them to ask a single question.

If you would like to see why the latest theory is also complete nonsense I would refer you to an article I posted last week on my blog.

Overlay of Obama and Ah’Nee Birth Certificates Shows the Latest Cold Case Posse Forgery Theory Is Nonsense

Kevin Davidson has also authored several articles that debunk the theory that items were “lifted” from the Ah’Nee certificate and is releasing more this week on the date stamp angles.

Mike Zullo seems upset the press is not giving him widespread favorable coverage. I would suggest that not allowing reporters to question any of his evidence and calling the media corrupt isn’t a good way to get them on your side. He also needs to know that the media is also aware of several basic facts that suggest this investigation isn’t anything worthy of paying much attention:

  1. This was never an official investigation conducted by the MCSO
  2. No suspect has ever been named.
  3. A person who was on the inside of the investigation from the beginning and left has said it was a sham.
  4. Mr. Zullo is not POST certified in Arizona.
  5. The Cold Case Posse has no track record of solving any crime.
  6. Not releasing the reports from Reed Hayes and FORLabs coupled with the two disastrous press conferences causes one to ask “What’s he hiding?”
  7. The Maricopa County Attorney hasn’t even been involved since 2012 and when asked then said he had no jurisdiction and the evidence presented at the press conferences was mostly supposition.
  8. Hawaii is the ultimate authority on the authenticity of their vital records documents and they have spoken.

It is with good reason that incoming Sheriff Penzone shut down this investigation.
You have my permission to use the information in this email or my article with attribution of course.

Best regards,

RC

Posted in Birthers | 5 Comments