The Origins of the Birther Theory

This post originally appeared at Open Left.

OK, sit down for this. The root of the "forged Obama birth certificate" idea is that Obama was created as part of a Jewish-Communist conspiracy to take over the United States. More on this later in the post.

We all know that the "birthers" are gaining momentum. Senator Inhofe is pushing it now. CNN and FOX have people pushing it on the air. The followers of the conspiracy theory are becoming increasingly fanatical. It's all over YouTube.

They disrupted a Congressman's town hall meeting the other day. Watch this to see the intensity they have:

And here is the great Mike Stark chasing down a few elected Republicans in DC, asking them to go on the record about this:

A recent component is they that a birth announcement in Hawaii papers back when Obama was born was planted there by someone. Yes, a conspiracy so vast that someone on the other side of the planet posted this item in a Hawaii newspaper for a child born in Kenya to make it look like he was born in Hawaii because they knew that one day he would need to be a "natural born" citizen in order to be President of the United States.

Seriously. This is serious nut stuff, but we saw nut stuff when Clinton was President and it was able to go as far as an impeachment. And then they won the Presidency on a campaign of "restoring honor and integrity to the White House." So don't discount nut stuff.

Why does it matter whether Obama was born in the United States or in Kenya? After all, as the child of a citizen he is automatically a citizen. And as for being born outside of the United States disqualifying him to be President, John McCain was also born outside of the United States and both Bush and Cheney were from Texas, which violated the 12th amendment. So exceptions are easily made -- IOKIYAR.

Here is the story of why this is so important to them:

The origins:

I wrote about the origins of this weird attack on Obama last year at my blog Seeing the Forest, when it showed up in right-wing magazines and websites. See Seeing the Forest: "Who Sent You?" -- The Coming Attack on Obama.

I'll call it the "Who Sent You" campaign. As weird as it sounds -- and it is weird stuff -- the gist of it is that Obama's birth was part of a secret plan by communists, Jews and one-worlders to take over the world. As you read this it is going to sound so fanatically wingnut/John Birch Society/black helicopter/precious bodily fluids weird that you are likely to dismiss it as the rantings of crazy people. But I have learned over the years that this stuff resonates with a certain crowd, and they are remarkably effective at tapping the fears of Americans.

Was I right a year ago when I said this is the kind of story that "resonates with a certain crowd"? Heh.

It is a long post there with background and links, but to sum it up, sites like National Review's The Corner and others started pushing a weird conspiracy theory, laying the groundwork for the attack on Obama that you are seeing today.

In February, The Corner at National Review Online posted Obama's Political Origins.

. . . all of my mixed race, black/white classmates throughout my youth, some of whom I am still in contact with, were the product of very culturally specific unions. They were always the offspring of a white mother, (in my circles, she was usually Jewish, but elsewhere not necessarily) and usually a highly educated black father. And how had these two come together at a time when it was neither natural nor easy for such relationships to flourish? Always through politics. No, not the young Republicans. Usually the Communist Youth League.

. . . I don't know how Barak Obama's parents met. But the Kincaid article referenced above makes a very convincing case that Obama's family, later, (mid 1970s) in Hawaii, had close relations with a known black Communist intellectual.

. . . Political correctness was invented precisely to prevent the mainstream liberal media from pursuing the questions which might arise about how Senator Obama's mother, from Kansas, came to marry an African graduate student.

This story refers to this from Accuracy in Media, Obama's Communist Mentor,

In his biography of Barack Obama, David Mendell writes about Obama's life as a "secret smoker" and how he "went to great lengths to conceal the habit." But what about Obama's secret political life? It turns out that Obama's childhood mentor, Frank Marshall Davis, was a communist.

[. . .] Obama's communist connection adds to mounting public concern about a candidate who has come out of virtually nowhere, with a brief U.S. Senate legislative record, to become the Democratic Party frontrunner for the U.S. presidency.

. . . AIM recently disclosed that Obama has well-documented socialist connections, which help explain why he sponsored a "Global Poverty Act" designed to send hundreds of billions of dollars of U.S. foreign aid to the rest of the world, in order to meet U.N. demands

There is more there,

So this story with its claim that Obama wasn't born in the United States, and his birth certificate was "forged," etc. isn't coming out of nowhere. There is an actual reason that some of them give for why anyone would do this, plant phony birth announcements, etc. This comes out of the incredibly paranoid and weird "John Bircher" core of the conservative movement. Yes, the ones who coined the phrase "Democrat Party." I'm not saying that your everyday birther is even aware of this as the basis of the complaint. But there it is.

It is nut stuff. It is serious nut stuff. But nut stuff works for them so watch out.