Posted by: distributorcap | July 26, 2009

Natural Born Sanity-Killers

One thing about the cable “news” outlets like Fox — they get to infect inform our society today even when there is not much to talk to about. During these “slow news” cycles, you end up watching the Fox bimbettes and morons hours and hours of turning mole hills into mountains and creating chicken shit out of chicken.

Then there is the media world’s obsession with dead celebrities.

But 10 days (Walter Cronkite on July 17) is a long time for Fox News and their associated friends to go without obsessing on celebrity deaths. In the interim, the fine folks at Fox have managed to fill their air time talking about celebrity births – well one birth in particular.

The honorable journalists at Fox have done their adoring fans big favor – they have combined talking about celebrity births with their real favorite theme – Obama bashing. Enter the birthers (which Fox News is more than happy to provide unlimited airtime for).

What are the birthers? The birthers are nothing more than a bunch of insane racists looking for a forum to spew lies and incite hate, and they will do anything to get it. And Fox News – with 168 hours of airtime to fill each week and a Roger Ailes policy requiring a minimum number Obama bashing hours – is more than happy to oblige. Something has to go between the commercials for and The Scooter store on Fox – why not stories that will legitimize nutcases?

Let’s examine some of the wonders of the birthers.

Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 of the U.S. Constitution sets the requirements for assuming the Presidency:

No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

Got that – natural born, age 35, resident for 14 years. Too bad for Fox, Carrie Prejean (born May 1987) is not eligible, but Joe the Plumber (born Dec. 1973) is!

Considering the US was only founded as a nation in 1776 (or 1789 depending on your definition of nation), a lot of people were born as British subjects. Including George Washington.

Oh Miss Liz, I don’t know nuthing ’bout birther babies.

To further clarify the definition of citizen, the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was enacted in 1868 (to correct undo the horrid Supreme Court Dred Scott decision that classified slaves and their descendants – like Michelle Obama – as non-citizens). This amendment provides an additional source of constitutional law stating “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”

Hawaii became a state on August 21, 1959. Obama was born in Hawaii on August 4, 1961. Can’t use the Hawaii as territory argument here, only the fake birth certificate one. I am bit surprised the birthers haven’t resorted to the countback strategy – you know the one where you check the monther’s passport and countback from August 4, 1961 to determine where she was when Obama was conceived. After all, under birther logic – if you are not conceived in the US, the you are not a natural born citizen.

Oh Miss Michelle, I don’t know nuthing ’bout birther babies.

This is not the first time there have been challenges to the natural born citizenship status of several Presidential figures:

Chester Alan Arthur 21st President (1881-1885), assumed office when James Garfield was assassinated. Arthur was rumored to have been born in Canada. He was actually born in Vermont to a American mother and Irish father. Arthur’s father was naturalized as a citizen after Arthur’s birth. The challenge comes from the fact Arthur was born before 14th Amendment was enacted (1868) – which held if you are born on US soil, you are a US Citizen. The other challenge to Arthur is a concept called patrilineal jus-sanguinis (Latin for right of blood). Jus-sanguinis states citizenship is determined by lineage, not place of birth. Based on this premised (which was widely held at this time), Arthur would have been a British citizen (Ireland was part of the British Empire).

Oh Miss Liddy, I don’t know nuthing ’bout birther babies. And aren’t we in the wrong movie.

George Romney – Mitten’s father, the former Governor of Michigan, ran for president in the Republican primaries in 1968. George Romney was born in Mexico to U.S. parents. Romney’s grandfather had emigrated to Mexico from Utah in 1886 with his three wives (so he wouldn’t be a felon). Romeny’s parents kept their citizenship and moved back to the US in 1912, when George was 5. George Romney never received Mexican citizenship due to Jus Sanguinis. Point was made moot when he lost to Nixon.

Barry Goldwater – presidential candidate in 1964. Goldwater was born in Phoenix in 1909. At that time Arizona was a territory, it did not become a state until 1912. He lost to Lyndon Johnson.

Lowell Weicker – former Senator and Governor of Connecticut entered the Republican primary in 1980. Weicker was born in Paris, France to US Citizens. His father worked at Squibb and his mother was born in India to British parents. Ronald Reagan got the nomination, won the election and ruined the country.

John McCain – 2008 Presidential candidate, was born to US parents Coco Solo submarine base near Colon, Panama in 1936. The cities of Colon and Panama City, though physically inside the Panama Canal Zone, were generally not considered part of the PCZ. In addition, the PCZ was legally an “unincorporated US territory.” In 1901, the US Supreme Court ruled in Downes v. Bidwell that unincorporated territories are NOT in the U.S. In Rasmussen v United States (1905), the Supreme Court ruled the constitution applied to only incorporated territories. This made people born in the Canal Zone U.S. nationals, not citizens. Congress did not pass a law to fix this until 1937. The law retroactively made those born between 1904 and 1937 US citizens.

John McCain was born in 1936, possibly in a city not considered part of the Canal Zone, but part of Panama proper. His citizenship was given “after the fact.” Your call on his status, sounds a little on the back door side. I bet the birthers have no problem with this.

McCain needed Solicitor General and uber-Republican right winger Ted Olson to write a paper declaring his eligibility. In April 2008 the US Senate passed a non-binding resolution recognizing McCain as a natural born citizen. In Sept 2008, US Judge William Alsup stated it was highly probable that McCain was a natural born citizen, but had reservations since some of the laws were applied retroactively. Gerald Chin, Professor of Law and University of Arizona argued McCain is first a citizen of Panama and then was retroactively declared a US Citizen. The US Foreign Affairs Manual states that children born in the PCZ became US nationals at one point, since they were not considered citizens originally.

The US Supreme Court has never ruled on a case that actually defines who a natural born citizen really is, including those born to US Citizens abroad.

You can bet those birthers (like Liz Cheney, G. Gordon Liddy and Richard Shelby) would be shouting loudly and vociferously to every news organization if anyone dared challenge the right of John McCain to be President.

But then again John McCain isn’t a magic Negro overlord, socialist, closet-Muslim, and re-education camp counselor (h/t to Tengrain)


  1. Excellent. Thanks much for this. I was wondering how McCain got around the Panama issue. Good beans, man!

  2. CNN's Lou Dobbs, responsible for taking the once mighty cable network down the path to dark village insanity, is the granddaddy of the birther movement.Night after night, Dobbs pushed the "Obama needs to show his birth certificate" idiocy, fueling and feeding the rightwing crazies, who actually believe:1. Obama was born in Indonesiaor,2. Obama was born in Mombasa, KenyaOf course, Obama was born in 1961 in Honolulu, HI (sorry, Cokie Roberts but Hawaii is an American state even if you don't think so.)Back to Lou Dobbs. It's all gotten so bad at CNN that Jon Klein, Dobbs boss sent him an email saying the birther saga is "dead."Dobbs is back to blaming Mexico and Mexicans for high unemployment in the U.S. and new cases of leprosy. Maybe this is because Dobbs was born in Delicias, Chihuahua, Mexico and smuggled into the U.S. by his father?I've even posted Lou Dobbs birth certificate on my blog to prove it.

  3. Hi Cap and Christopher;Excellent article and so true.Christopher, I did not realize Dobbs was a former "wet back" :)It is insanity, a country of immigrants or descendants of immigrants that chooses to discriminate against immigrants.Like old Scrooge, saving every last dollar and making life hell on the slaves under his control, til one day he got a little visit. 🙂

  4. I thought the birth-certificate thing was dead.I guess it just reveals Fox as a 'fear-mongering infectoid' preying on the dreads of the most intellectually challenged in our society.if Fox did not broadcast football games, I would not watch their network at all….And if the weather channel ever gets bought by Rupert…I am seriously screwed!

  5. Ichabod,I posted his birth certificate on my blog. His parents lived in Childress, TX but the couple were in Delicias, Chihuahua, Mexico, when Louis Dobbs was born.He's a Mexican national.Dobbs spent his entire adult life running away from this fact even saying he's from Rupert, ID.Sorry, you ARE a Mexican, Senior Dobbs.

  6. The birth certificate controversy is not dead.Paul McCartney is dead, and has been so for about 40 years.Also, Elvis Presley is still alive.And those "moonwalks". Not Michael Jackson, I'm talking about Neil Armstrong. Just how gullible are you?They were all high degree Masons, you know.You can read about these things and so many more… on the internets!

  7. Chris…I didn't know that about Lou Dobbs. I think it is time for him to go the way of Glen Beck. I have noted before, my WV birth certificate, has my date of birth, city born, and parents name – that is it. (Oh the State seal of course.) G. Gordon Liddy looked like an ass on Chris Matthews the other night. This is so ridiculous, but the right-wing has to have something to cling to.

  8. The Birthers have been joined now by the remaining members of PUMA and of course, the rightwing media, to push this idiocy.Like Tweety asked G. Gordon Liddy:"Is the Republican governor of Hawaii in on this cover-up? President Obama's parents? Michelle Obama, is she in on it, too? David Axelrod? How far up does it go?"Liddy was speechless. These people are utterly insane. I'm all for criticizing Obama on policy or his snail-pace on repealing DADT (I've devoted considerable time to this) but the conspiracy shit is just whacko talk and doesn't have any place in national politics.I blog on Salon now too and I read what these people post. They really believe President Obama is a foreigner.

  9. Idiots.

  10. Ignoramuses. I wonder how many man-hours, and how much money, these morons have devoted to this non-issue. WHAT ABOUT THE SERIOUS ISSUES that we need to be dealing with, ASSWIPES?Informative and excellent post.

  11. I guess I'm an idiot. While I don't really know if Obama is eligible to POTUS or not, I do have an open mind.I have some nagging questions that just won't go away and would be nice if they could actually be honestly addressed by the transparent President.Of course I believe he was born in Hawaii, and of course I believe he is a US Citizen. I believe it only takes 1 parent to make a US Citizen, but 2 parents to make a Natural Born Citizen. I could be wrong – but I'd like a court of law to make that decision – rather than letting the blogosphere make that decision.I'm not into calling those that oppose my opinion names – that does nothing towards discussing the situation like adults. I don't follow my statments with the word "period" – with the intention of making what I say a fact. I'm an American, and it is my right (at least at this point in time) to question my government and my President when I feel something seems 'not quite right'.I don't like the fact that the name of the hospital that he supposedly was born in – keeps changing (both by the press and by the President himself).I don't like the fact that he travelled to Kenya (on taxpayer money) to campaign for a paternal relative who believes in Sharia Law.I don't like the fact that he appointed Harold Koh as a legal advisor who not only also believes in Sharia Law but in Transnationalism as well.I don't like the fact that he has 3 dozen Czars and counting. And I especially do NOT like the beliefs of the Science Czar!I don't like the fact that when the media decides to cover the issue, I feel like they purposefully misrepresent the facts. 1. There IS a difference in US Citizen and Natural Born Citizen.2. It is NOT about the birth certificate.The one question that needs to be answered is:During the election, then Senator Obama published a statement at his website which said that his birth status was “governed” by the British Nationality Act of 1948. Can you please tell the American people how a natural born citizen of the United States can be governed – at birth – by British law?I guess I'm an idiot, but I have unanswered questions which I feel are not unreasonable to ask nor unreasonable to expect my government to answer.

  12. To clarify – 1 US Citizen parent for the child to be US Citizen and 2 US Citizen parents (plural) for the child to be a Natural Born Citizen.

  13. Why do the "birthers" even have a voice? Why on earth do these criminals (G Gordon Liddy is a criminal) have a voice?Gah.

  14. Birther Denial Points:1. Obama's birth certificate is displayed on the Internet.Anyone can put anything on the Internet.2. Hawaii's Department of Births has verified that Obama was born in Oahu.Oahu is not an American city, it's in Kenya.3. A signed birth certificate with a Hawaii state seal has been shown on countless news programs.You can forge a document and add a phony gold seal.4. Kenya says he was born in Hawaii.Who listens to Kenyans?5. The Oahu newspapers had Obama's birth listed in their newspaper that year.Anyone can print a newspaper and backdate it.6. Obama was born in Hawaii and Hawaii is a state.Hawaii has only been a state about 30 years and before that it was owned by Kenya. 7. Birthers are stupid assholes.We know you are, but what are we?

  15. Hi Anonymous;You have a right to know, however what difference does it make where the POTUS is born or if he or she has an accent from a foreign tongue?There have been traitors whose nationality were unquestionably American and there have been soldiers in the US military who were not of the land or even citizens but their lives they gave in freedom's cause.It is what the POTUS does and who he or she is that counts, not where he or she happens to be when his or her mother gives birth.

  16. DCap, it is amazing to me the complete idiocy they bother to put on television these days, especially on Faux News. And Lou Dobbs should be taken off the air, he has lost all credibility to me, if he ever had any.You are so right – you wouldn't see this going on if McCain had won, despite the much shakier claim he had to be a "natural born" citizen.

  17. DCap -As always, excellent stuff.Just as a big of perspective on the flexibility of the Wingnut Mind (if such a thing actually exists), it was only a few years ago that Wingnuttia was calling for the end of the President's native birth requirement."Why," you ask?Because they wanted to be able for Ahhhhhnold to run for president. And I am not making that up.Regards,Tengrain

  18. Excellent essay, Dcap.And Ten, I was gonna make that same point before I got to yours.They may still push for it next time you know, using the argument that obviously since Obama was not a U.S. citizen, Aaaahhhnawld should be eligible too.The minority Rethugs will somehow have enough votes to change the Constitution (with a little help from their friends across the aisle) and we are enabled to be led finally by the ultimate Terminator of our woes.Imagine that.S

  19. Speaking of birthers, let's take a look at Trigg's birth certificate. I still think Sarah's his grandmother, and his birth was sneakier than hell.

  20. you guys are great…..i think suzan you mean thisThe Equal Opportunity to Govern Amendment, also known as the Hatch Amendment, is a United States Constitutional amendment proposed in July 2003 by Senator Orrin Hatch to repeal the Natural-born citizen clause prohibiting foreign-born individuals from holding the office of President. Hatch's amendment would allow anyone who has been a US citizen for twenty years to seek these offices., this proposal is widely seen as an attempt to make Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger eligible for the presidency and is sometimes nicknamed "Arnold bill".

  21. With Arnold's ability to handle money in Califiornia, I imagine the GOP would love to get him in the White House so he can Bushycize the economy again.

  22. Liz Cheney is a vile liar. Liddy is a fascist wannabe, but it seemed he's added senility to his bigotry act.

  23. Obama was on Kerry's swift boat on the day he "earned" his Silver Star, a convenient fact the liberal media continues to ignore.j/k of course

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