Fun New Birther Conspiracy Based Upon Illiteracy

Weigel
Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Jan. 21 2011 11:27 AM

Fun New Birther Conspiracy Based Upon Illiteracy

On January 18, Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie fielded a question from the Honolulu Star-Advertiser about Barack Obama's birth certificate. Abercrombie, who knew Barack Obama, Sr and Ann Dunham when they reared the future president, said the state had evidence of Obama's birth -- as spokespeople for the Department of Health have been saying since 2008. (They've confirmed this to me, too.)

"It was actually written, I am told," said Abercrombie, "this is what our investigation is showing, it actually exists in the archives, written down."

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

Advertisement

Here's the headline that got in a WorldNetDaily story by Jerome Corsi:

Hawaii governor can't find Obama birth certificate

Yes... that's not what he said at all, is it? More Corsi:

Suggesting he was still intent on producing more birth records on Obama from the Hawaii Department of Health vital records vault, Abercrombie told the newspaper there was a recording of the Obama birth in the state archives that he wants to make public. Abercrombie did not report to the newspaper that he or the Hawaii Department of Health had found Obama's long-form, hospital-generated birth certificate. The governor only suggested his investigations to date had identified an unspecified listing or notation of Obama's birth that someone had made in the state archives.

This is basically gibberish. It doesn't matter what record Hawaii has. It matters that the state has a record , and that the record confirms what was reported in 1961 in the births sections of Hawaii newspapers. But this is the problem with birthers, and why I'm so bored with them. They reverse-engineer every bit of news to find gerunds and commas that may, perhaps, in a manner of speaking, prove that there is a shadow of a doubt of skepticism about Obama's birth.

Why bother mentioning this? A headline that's been on Drudge for two days:

So this junk is never going away.

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Dec. 19 2014 4:15 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? Staff writer Lily Hay Newman shares what stories intrigued her at the magazine this week.