Saturday, July 18, 2009

Communication Update

So, let's check in and see how things are running in my little corner of the universe at the moment.

First of all, the boys over at Kook's Manifesto won't be publishing my infinitely reasonable climate change discussion, because Andrew33's tender, sensitive feelings are hurt. Or something like that.

See, I ended up on their blog, mostly because I was invited here. So I did. We chatted - it was friendly and congenial, but we didn't talk about global warming, which is what got us talking in the first place.

So two weeks ago, I coughed up a post to sum up our previous talk on the subject. Which was apparently where things started to go wrong.

Andrew33 wandered into the room and said:
I have an offer for you. To be fair, you come up with a concise pro global warming post and I will post it on our blog. I am a believer in giving both sides of the story... You have debated us well and not resorted to name calling and insults so hopefully this shows that we are fair and treat everybody decently as long as they act like adults
Of course, then you scroll down six responses and you find him saying to Diogenes:
I could call you a typical liberal who thinks fancy language makes you look smart... Difference between you and NC is I respect NC... why are you doing the talking? I will no longer acknowledge your existence as between your ears lies a supermassive black hole... You however are not welcome on our blog since you obviously only think with the part of your body glued to the chair.
And then his pal KOOK chimed in with
I find it interesting that Diogenes Syndrome is a disease related to being slovenly...its symptoms include body odor and other signs of severe hygienic neglect ( a decent description of a liberal hippy type) Frontal Lobe impairment may also play a part in causation.

Diogenes is also the name, I believe, of the evil brother in the Pendergast novels, and a villain in Sherlock holmes.

Good name choice
And it got worse. They decided that either Diogenes and I were the same person, or were gay lovers; Andy took his own posts, insults and all, and posted them on his blog; and things just went generally downhill.

Interesting that KOOK didn't bother pointing out that the most famous Diogenes ("Diogenes the Cynic") was legendarily looking for an honest man. Didn't seem to find one here.

So I came back for the first time in three days, and find this nonsense going on. I got a little cranky, yelled at the children here and on their end, went about my business.

Now, Andy admittedly made something resembling an effort: he deleted all the posts on his end, and said that if certain "corrections" were made, we'd still be debating.

That's the difference between Andy and me. I support free speech, and believe everybody's views should stand on their own merit. And unlike Dick Cheney, I believe that the "public record" should stay out there in the public. I think I've stated this often enough: I stand behind everything I say. I'll admit if I get something wrong, but you get to see the discussion, warts and all.

So I didn't make any "corrections." I put together a second global warming post meeting his specifications, and I stood back to see what would happen.

Which would be "squat."

(This even confused some of his readers.)

So, I've moved on. I had some time in the evenings this week, and I've been picking on "birthers" (the people who are still up in arms that Obama's birth certificate is faked, despite all the evidence to the contrary. Admittedly, this is low-hanging fruit: while poking birthers with a stick is easy, it's ultimately unsatisfying. But, hey, it's been a long month.)

See, what happened was this:
Taitz asked the court to consider granting her client’s request based on (Maj Stefan) Cook’s belief that Obama is not a natural-born citizen of the United States and is therefore ineligible to serve as commander-in-chief of the U.S. Armed Forces.

Cook further states he "would be acting in violation of international law by engaging in military actions outside the United States under this President’s command. ... simultaneously subjecting himself to possible prosecution as a war criminal by the faithful execution of these duties."
Now, his orders were, in fact, revoked, but it had nothing to do with the lawsuit. But that didn't stop the birthers from shouting gleefully "See? Even the Army knows Obama isn't a real US citizen!"

Cook, it turns out, was a Freeper and a conspiracy theorist who just might have cooked this scheme up with Taitz months ago.

(If nothing else, consider that Cook applied for orders to Afghanistan back in May. Obama was already in office. The "facts" hadn't changed in the intervening period; why is Cook trying to claim this abrupt "crisis of conscience" now? If he was truly worried that Obama's citizenship was such a terrible threat to the safety of soldiers everywhere, Cook shouldn't have volunteered in the first place.)

The problem was, Cook is no ordinary Reservist: he's an Individual Mobilization Augmentee (IMA). An IMA is not ordered to go anywhere. He volunteers to go, and is allowed to change his mind about going up until he gets on the plane.

As such, he registered this (somewhat ridiculous) complaint, and the Army rescinded his orders. That's how the system works.

Now, since he no longer has to go to Afghanistan, and his suit is based around the argument that he shouldn't go to Afghanistan... well, the point is moot. The courts don't keep arguing once the basic charges have been settled, one way or another.

And now he's facing a court martial - check out Articles 88 and 94 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (or UCMJ, to those of us who lived under it).
Article 94 MUTINY OR SEDITION
"Any person subject to this chapter who... with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of lawful civil authority, creates, in concert with any other person, revolt, violence, or disturbance against that authority is guilty of sedition..."
("revolt," incidentally, does not always involve rocks and pitchforks, and "disturbance" covers a lot of ground)

More importantly, though:
Article 88 CONTEMPT TOWARD OFFICIALS
Any commissioned officer who uses contemptuous words against the President, the Vice President, Congress, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of a military department, the Secretary of Transportation, or the Governor or legislature of any State, Territory, Commonwealth, or possession in which he is on duty or present shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.
Thanks to Cook's IMA status, he's safe from some of the more esoteric charges such as Absent Without Leave (AWOL - Art 86) or Missing A Movement (Art 87). But he's still in for an interesting time.

(And by the way, here's how the Military Officer's Association sees it, if you're interested.)

I got the usual range of responses: some people wouldn't let it be heard (one guy even deleted it after initially posting it); a lot of people ignored me.

Two people let in the original comment, indulged in some character defamation, and then refused to print any follow-up comments. (I really love that last link - one of the first arguments of the unhinged right wing is to try and claim that I'm lying about 21 years of military service. It doesn't fit their limited world-view, and they refuse to accept it.)

There was one guy who generously allowed me to post, but said "This is the last unsigned response I will publish. I agree that everyone should be heard but, not if they remain annom." First of all, I have never been annom in my life and I am deeply offended that he would suggest such a thing. And secondly, a LiveJournal account? Really? That's so... 90's...

And two of them actually tried to debate the point. Not that it really got them anywhere.

But that's been my week. And now I have to spend the next week prepping for bringing our new electronic medical records on-line at the next facility. Yay.

(You really wouldn't think doctors would be Luddites, would you? And even the ones who can use a computer tend to fear change. It's sad.)

14 comments:

Eman said...

I’m going to see if you can answer just one question directly. Just one.

One direct answer.

One…

Answer…

Directly.

Why not show us the birth certificate?

Please Bill, do your very best not to fail this simple test, as it would do you irredeemable harm should you disappoint.

Eman said...

BY THE WAY... THIS JUST IN...

General, lieutenant colonel join suit similar to 2 already thrown out
By Lily Gordon - lgordon@ledger-enquirer.com


A controversial suit brought by a U.S. Army reservist has been joined by a retired Army two-star general and an active reserve Air Force lieutenant colonel.

Maj. Stefan Frederick Cook filed the suit July 8 in federal court here asking for conscientious objector status and a preliminary injunction based upon his belief that President Barack Obama is not a natural-born citizen of the United States and is therefore ineligible to serve as president of the United States and commander-in-chief of the U.S. Armed Forces.

However, before the issue got to court, Cook’s orders to deploy to Afghanistan were revoked. Lt. Col. Maria Quon, a public affairs officer with the U.S. Army Human Resources Command-St. Louis, said Tuesday that Cook was no longer expected to report Wednesday to MacDill Air Force Base in Florida for mobilization to active duty. Cook, who claims he is now the victim of retaliation due to his suit, received his mobilization orders to report for active duty at MacDill on Wednesday. From there, he was to go to Fort Benning on Saturday for deployment to Afghanistan.

Cook is an Individual Mobilization Augmentee. This means he’s a reserve soldier assigned to an active component unit consisting of active duty soldiers instead of a reserve unit, which is composed entirely of reserve soldiers. He is assigned to the U.S. Army Element of U.S. Southern Command.

Last week, Cook filed a request in federal court seeking a temporary restraining order and status as a conscientious objector represented by California attorney Orly Taitz.

The government, in its response to the suit, claims that Cook’s suit is “moot” in that he already has been told he doesn’t have to go to Afghanistan, so the relief he is seeking has been granted.

“The Commanding General of SOCCENT (U.S. Special Operations Central Command) has determined that he does not want the services of Major Cook, and has revoked his deployment orders,” the response states.

In a pleading revised after the revocation of Cook’s orders, Taitz argues that the application for preliminary injunction is not moot and that retired Maj. Gen. Carol Dean Childers and active U.S. Air Force reservist Lt. Col. David Earl Graeff have joined the suit “because it is a matter of unparalleled public interest and importance and because it is clearly a matter arising from issues of a recurring nature that will escape review unless the Court exercises its discretionary jurisdiction.”

Cook’s resubmitted Application for Preliminary Injunction is meant to encompass the possibility of Cook receiving future orders for deployment as well as to address and prevent “negative collateral consequences such as retaliation against Major Stefan Frederick Cook ...”

As to the retaliation issue, the revised suit states Cook lost his job at Simtech Inc., a corporation that does Department of Defense contracting in the field of information technology/systems integration, because of the suit. It also states that Cook has been subjected to “gossip” from people who believed Cook was “manipulating his deployment orders to create a platform for political purposes.”

Taitz, who has challenged the legitimacy of Obama’s presidency in other courts, filed the original suit with the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia. Two similar suits have previously been thrown out of federal court.

In the filing, Cook states he “would be acting in violation of international law by engaging in military actions outside the United States under this President’s command. … simultaneously subjecting himself to possible prosecution as a war criminal by the faithful execution of these duties.”

A hearing to discuss Cook’s requests is scheduled to take place in federal court here this morning at 9:30 a.m.

Diogenes said...

Bill, this has been an eye-opener, Bill....

NO! The "Bill" stuff has to end.

Anyway, thanks (I guess) for giving the links to that Manifesto site. YIKES! That dude is seriously demented, judging from the stuff he puts on there. I mean, e-boy was a stupid putz, but he seems harmess enough. A-J sounds like he could easily wind up in a bell tower somewhere.

You're right about poking birthers... but it can be a guilty pleasure, like watching "Big Brother" on CBS. Sometimes you just have to wonder whether or not there is enough aluminum foil for suitable hats for all those folks.

Eman said...

This guy ^^^ just cannot shut up.

I asked Bill. Not you.. Bill.

So if you would please just allow him to answer and keep your thoughts on your own blog, it would be appreciated. Thank you.

I man really... How far over the annoying line are you going to go before you realize you forgot your Garmen and can't get back to stupid.

He's like that mosquito that I let land and start drilling into my thigh. Once he got his drill in me I pinched the skin around him and he filled up too fast to pull out and…POP!

Here ends the visual of what I’d love to do to this blog-stalking moribund man.

Nameless Cynic said...

eMan - You'll be thrilled. (Maybe).

I started to answer you, and it kept getting longer, and longer.

I'll work on it this week (I might finish tomorrow - it's hard to tell). But you get your own private response to your question, as a post.

Oh, by the way, in answer to your second question, that general you mention? Yeah, turns out that he doesn't want to be involved. It seems he never agreed to be a party in the lawsuit - several months ago, he signed a motion Taitz filed requesting that a judge unseal specific personnel records. And Taitz just kept on using his name without his knowledge. She's well known in the birther community, and these are the type of tactics she uses all the time.

Eman said...

A post???

It's a simple question Bill.

Why not show us the birth certificate?

Diogenes said...

http://www.factcheck.org/elections-2008/born_in_the_usa.html

http://www.snopes.com/politics/obama/birthcertificate.asp

Even WorldNutDaily acknowledged, way back in August 2008, that the claims that Obama's birth certificate is a forgery have been discredited:

"The lawsuit claims Barack Obama's eligibility is questionable on several grounds, including the allegation that he was born in Kenya to parents unable to automatically grant him American citizenship, that his Hawaii birth certificate is a forgery – a now discredited claim – that he was made a citizen of Indonesia as a child and that he retained foreign citizenship into adulthood without recording an oath of allegiance to regain any theoretical American citizenship.

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=73214

So, please, exhibit your dearth of intelligence once again.

Nameless Cynic said...

Come on, Dio. If he's not insulting, we should return the favor. It's important to reward good behavior.

Well, eMan, if you don't want an in-depth analysis, you can get most of it from those links above.

There is an answer, by the way, to the question "why won't he show us the birth certificate?" But you aren't going to like it. It's a two part answer.

Part one is simple: he already has.

The background and birth of Barack Obama have been scrutinized by the election divisions of, first, Illinois state, and then by the federal government. He's been vetted by the Secret Service (who does that as a matter of course for every presidential candidate, to ensure that they aren't a security risk).

Once the birther's started to raise their simple-minded objections, the Hawaiian Registrar of Vital Statistics and the state Health Director both examined the original document, and said it was real. Factcheck.org got permission to examine it, and they also said it's real.

But the questions won't go away. Not because they haven't been answered, and not because they've suddenly gained in merit, but just because they boil down to "I don't want this black man as president."

And the lies keep going. All the lies about Obama that won't go away: He's Muslim. He took the oath of office on a Koran. He refuses to say the Pledge of Allegiance. He's not American.

He spent a lot of time trying to rebut things at first. Then he set up a website. Nothing helps. After a while, he came to a realization.

And here's the part you aren't going to like.

He showed his birth certificate and other documentation to everybody who mattered: the officials who will approve or disapprove based on that documentation.

But you don't matter.

Don't take that wrong. I'm sure you believe that it's important to ensure that all of the requirements are followed. And it is. But it isn't your job. And it isn't the job of the small legion of microcephalic mouthbreathers who refuse to accept reality.

We aren't a true democracy in America. We're a "representative democracy." There were many reasons that America was set up that way, but one has come to the fore.

The United States has a population estimated at 306,947,000 people. It is not the business of government to allow each one of those people access to personally handle Obama's birth certificate with their grubby little fingers. So your representatives handle that for you. The government has neither the time or money to deal with each person individually in a case like this.

Diogenes said...

NC, could Senator Obama have obtained a passport without a valid birth certificate?

If it ever existed, wouldn't a problem have come up when he was investigated by the FBI for his security clearance?

Anu said...

From the MOAA site comments...

Matthew LoFiegoon 23 Jul 2009

Hardcore conspiracy theorists are immune to evidence though. Obama could order all scientists to collaborate on a massive project to invent a time traveling device, take them back to personally watch him being born in Hawaii and they’d come back and say ‘it looked an awful lot like Kenya to me’.

Sums it up nicely I think

The Keeper Of Odd Knowledge (KOOK) said...

You know when opinions vary as much as they do it is hard to keep people from getting out of line and having a good debate.

It is really funny to me to read your comments on your site.

There are some of us who will just never agree about many issues.

Why I cannot easily say, other than some seriously differing conclusions given the same facts.

one small side note. Once someone is elected to office any security clearance check sorta goes out the window. If it is actaully done it is in a very perfunctory way. What would happen if the "people" elected the president and the FBI said he could not get security clearance? It doesnt happen that way. That being said it took a long time to even get me to comment on the birther issue and I am embarassed by some of the more outlandish claims.

I will go with Emam.
where is the long form birth certificate with the doctors signature?

I still think he is a citizen, just not sure what is up with all the secrecy.

Diogenes said...

The FBI doesn't do security checks on Senators? Really??

As for the so-called "long form" certificate, it sounds like the actual paper long forms were trashed by the state of Hawaii a long time ago, when they went to microfiche records.

What difference does that make, anyway? The short form clearly says on its face: "This copy serves as prima facie evidence of the fact of birth in any court proceeding." Game. Set. Match.

Nameless Cynic said...

Thank you, Dio. It won't do any good. As I pointed out, there is no "secrecy," just a simple acknowledgement that the lunatic fringe will never be satisfied.

Diogenes said...

What do you think of the House resolution they passed yesterday, to mark the 50th anniversary of Hawaii becoming a state? It celebrates Hawaii, in part, for being the birthplace of our 44th President, Barack Obama. And it passed 378-0. hehehe