Heather Heyer, November 2016
It's tempting, but probably not. It's an account of a fifty-year-old memory from an unrelated third party. Since I plan to talk about the unreliability of such accounts (read: Race Bannon), I can't very well cite them when they're in my favor, unless they check out.Now if it's somehow confirmed that Dr. West *was* the doctor, then I might include it. But then, if he's confirmed, then I'll probably just cite whatever that source is.
Do you want to include the account of Barbara Nelson in this chapter?
There will be a chapter that includes some talk of the two-citizen-parent argument, but I envision the chapter on the whole being more about pseudolegalism. Since I don't want to actively argue the merits of Vattelism at length, I'd like to get a number of ConLaw professors to simply agree that it's meritless, and I can just cite expert after expert after expert.
Will there be a Vattel chapter?
Taken together, all of [highlight=#ffffbf]this[/highlight] pieces form a cohesive, consistent, well-evidenced and long-standing proof that Barack Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on August 4, 1961.
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I'm liking what I'm reading so far, Loren. You write very well.
Chapter 1 is essentially an introduction. Not only to Birtherism, but to the broad strokes of conspiracism, denialism, and skeptical thinking.Chapter 2 lays out the political and social landscape that set the stage for the questioning of Obama's birth and citizenship. Some on the discussion over John McCain's status, but more on the 'Obama is a secret Muslim' rumors. Who started them and so on.Chapter 3 covers the origin of the central birther rumor of Obama being born in Kenya. Both who originally started it and spread it, and how it took off after the NRO article.Chapter 4 is about denialism. After I lay out the facts showing that Obama *was* born in Hawaii, I then go into the different standard denialist responses to such evidence and how they reject it. Also I discuss anomaly-hunting, and how to distinguish denialism from genuine skepticism.Chapter 5 is about how false rumors are created. I argue that there are three general ways rumors are created (and they do bleed into each other), and I illustrate each with one of the big concrete birther rumors about the Kenyan birth. Namely, 1) that it was in Mombasa (misinterpretation of a fact), 2) that two of his half-siblings confirmed it and/or said they were present (misremembering of a fact), and 3) that it was at Coast Hospital (purely fabricated crap).Beyond that I just have a general map, and haven't written much. I'll talk about the types of conspiracy theories and the relationship between conspiracism and denialism. One chapter will focus on pseudoscience, which Birtherism actually has relatively little of. Pseudolegalism and maybe pseudohistory. Propaganda is the chapter I've given the most thought to. And the epilogue will include the story of Hiram Revels.
I realize it's a work in progress, but since this is titled "Chapter 4", can you give us an idea of what the first three chapters will cover? I'd like to have some sense of where I'm coming in on the narrative.
I will comment more when I read it all, but I am glad the project is progressing. An interesting book that might be informative as to how to do something like this is a book on the [/break1]archive.org/details/hallcarbineaffai012466mbp]http://www.archive.org/details/hallcarb ... i012466mbp Hall Carbine Affair, a scandal which arose from the sale of various carbines to the U.S. military during the Civil War.Despite having little connection to the affair, Morgan was vilified for decades as having sold defective carbines to the U.S. This was commonly accepted wisdom. The problem was, it appears to have been nearly completely untrue. Despite this, to this day, you will often hear people, mostly leftists, repeat this accusation.This book comprehensively demolishes the tale, with two halves, one devoted to a full analysis of the paper record and other evidence, and a shorter part, which basically hits the high points. The structure might be useful, and it might be a good idea to lead with something like the "highlights reel" before getting deep into the nitty-gritty.That way, people who just want a quick "how do I debunk this birfer who showed up on my forum" tutorial can get that, and people who want to geek out seriously about it can read the whole thing. Apologies if I've suggested something you're already doing.
Thanks in advance.