This week's syndicated column:
One thing I’ve learned while researching my new, nearly finished book is that both history and news, history’s so-called rough draft, are not written by the “victors” as much as they are censored, twisted and reconfigured by what I can best describe as “the mob.”
I’m not referring to the Mafia. What I’m talking about is a mob-like amalgam of sharp elbows and big mouths who dictate acceptable topics, their narrative flow and an approved range of opinion – the consensus-makers. Defying consensus, breaking what amount to Mafia-like vows of “omerta” – silence – and delving into the verboten, is the worst possible crime of anti-mobness, punishable by eternal hooting and marginalization.
Few transgress. Which explains the news blackout on an extraordinary chain of recent events that took place in and around a Georgia courtroom and pertained to challenges to President Obama’s eligibility to be a presidential candidate in Georgia in 2012. In the end, the president defeated the challenge. He will be on the Georgia primary ballot come March. But therein lies an amazing tale.
Already I can feel the chill hiss of “birther” at the mere mention of these events, all because I haven’t included the mob-requisite catcalls that are “supposed” to go along with such accounts. But there’s nothing to mock here.
Last month, after Administrative Law Judge Michael Malihi denied motions by President Obama’s lawyer Michael Jablonski both to dismiss proceedings against the president and to quash a subpoena, three attorneys made history. For the first time, attorneys were permitted to enter evidence into the court record challenging Barack Obama’s constitutional eligibility to be president.
Georgia state law stipulates: “Every candidate for federal and state office … shall meet the constitutional and statutory qualifications for holding the office being sought.” Plaintiff attorneys Van Irion and Mark Hatfield, who is also a Georgia state representative, argued that President Obama, an American citizen, fails to meet these qualifications because he is not a “natural born” citizen, the constitutional requirement for the presidency. This is due, they argued, to the uncontested fact that his father, Barack Obama Sr. of Kenya, was a British subject, not an American citizen. A third plaintiff attorney, Orly Taitz – object of an eternity’s worth of “two-minute hates” within the media mob – introduced evidence that the 44th president of the United States has engaged in what appears to be identity fraud.
Such evidence, as gleaned from a partial list of exhibits introduced in the hearing and published at the American Thinker website, included affidavits from security professionals and other documentation attesting that Obama is using a Connecticut Social Security number (he never lived in Connecticut); that Obama’s purported Social Security number was never issued to him; and that – my favorite – his Social Security number “does not pass E-Verify.” Another affidavit from an Adobe Illustrator expert maintains that Obama’s birth certificate, released last spring to much hype and ballyhoo, is a computer-generated forgery.
Frankly, I was unimpressed with the presidential defense in pre-hearing arguments. For example, Jablonski tried to deflect the Social Security issue – which, after all, raises serious questions of fraud – by pointing out that “nothing in the Constitution makes … participating in Social Security a prerequisite to serving as president.” (So what’s a little felonious fraud?) On the “citizenship issue,” Jablonski declared the issue was “soundly rejected by 69,456,897 Americans in the 2008 elections, as it has been by every judicial body” since. Is he saying that a lot of votes or previous court actions nullify the legal merits of any new proceeding? I’m no lawyer, but that doesn’t seem like much of a legal argument.
The day before the hearing, Jablonksi announced he and the president would “suspend further participation” in the proceedings; Brian Kemp, the Georgia secretary of state, retorted that Jablonski and his client would “do so at your own peril.” On hearing day, the defense and defendant didn’t just rest; they didn’t show up, defying the subpoena summoning Jablonski and the president to court. (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution later styled the president’s rejection of his subpoena as a boycott.) Contempt of court, anyone? How about just a headline?
Nope. Headlines could wait – at least until the story came out “right,” which it did when both the judge and secretary of state ruled this month in favor of President Obama.
Obama’s on the Georgia ballot; “birthers” lose again. The narrative is locked down.
This time around, though, it doesn’t feel as if Obama really won.