In a last-ditch attempt to spook credulous Americans into voting for John McCain, a Republican congressman and his brother-in-law have offered $10,000 to a software-wielding Oxford don, asking for proof that Barack Obama's memoir was written by former domestic terrorist William Ayers. As first reported by The Sunday Times, Dr. …
Leader of the free world? Oh my...
The free world would like to distanciate himself from the preposterous claim that the US might be part of it (let alone lead it). Thank you for your attention.
Führer eines Freien und Stolzen Deutschlands!
"probable next leader of the free world"
Yeah right. Also, the world is flat, the surge worked and the bailout will save the economy.
So many missing details....
They asked an Oxford don to pass judgement on something that might have damaged a left-leaning politician and a fellow whackademic , and helped a right-leaning politician? Only an American would believe in the mythical objectivity of an Oxford don. Might as well have asked Ayers himself. Sorry, what an insinuation, I'm sure the don was no more biased than Cade himself.....
"....have played up past meetings between Obama and Ayers, who once lived in the same Chicago neighborhood and worked together on local education reform and anti-poverty initiatives...." You forgot to mention that Obama launched his political career from Ayer's living room in a coming-out party organised by Ayers and wife Bernadine Dohrn (another Weather Underground member) in 1995. Are we supposed to believe that Obama just decided to have this event in the house of complete strangers? Or that even earlier that year it was Ayers that helped Obama, then a junior lawyer at a minor law firm, get appointed chairman of the multi-million dollar Chicago Annenberg Challenge grant. Even Obama's team have stopped denying that Obama knew Ayers, despite having done so originally (which means they were lying, but I wouldn't expect you to post that either). Come on, Cade, try and be just slightly objective, even if just for appearance's sake, it's what journalism is supposedly about.
And whilst Dr Millican says "....In view of what I have found, and the intrinsic unlikelihood of the hypothesis, I would be astonished if anything came to light to reverse this verdict....", he is either completely ignorant of or denying knowledge of what has thrown weight behind the issue in the US - Jake Cashill's analysis, as detailed at http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/10/who_wrote_dreams_from_my_fathe_1.html . But I wouldn't expect the the Dr (or Cade) to have read such an article as Amercian Thinker is what they would term "extremist right wing" and accuse it of "smearing" Obama (clue - posting anything not on the team Obama song sheet will get you accused of "smearing" and being a closet Nazi, just wait for the responses to this post!). In short, there is an argument to counter Dr Millican's analysis, and seeing as both rely on theoretical analysis they are both just as liable to be right or wrong, with equal vailidity. Probably the only person who can clear up the issue would be Obama, and I can't see him putting his hand up for a polygraph test. If he did, I'm sure there would be far more fun questions to ask about the past influences in his life than who wrote his memoirs.
"Amercian Thinker is what they would term "extremist right wing""
Anyone not deserving of being sectioned under the Mental Health Act would probably concur.
A syllogism is born
"In short, there is an argument to counter Dr Millican's analysis, and seeing as both rely on theoretical analysis they are both just as liable to be right or wrong, with equal vailidity (sic)."
Is this an example of a general pattern?
A and B are competing arguments.
A and B both rely on theoretical analysis.
Therefore A and B are equally likely to be right or wrong, and equally valid.
Looks suspiciously like the "reasoning" used by the Christian right to argue the case for their particular brand of ignorance being taught in science classes...
@ Matt Bryant
Lol are you seriously suggesting that Millican has deliberately falsified his results? While it is not impossible I cannot see what he would get out of doing so to justify the risks to his reputation/job for a Politician from another country. Sorry I just cant see any connection. Especially as Fox and co came to him. If he had sought them out I could see your point.
To be honest if Millican had refused to say yay or nay over his results I would be more inclined to agree with you (if as you intimate he is sympathetic to Obama) that he was possibly covering up something he didn’t like.
Funny stuff. Almost as funny as knowing that it was Chicago Republicans that put Ayers in charge of all those committees in the first place. So anyone that wanted to do any kind of educational charity work in Chicago had no choice but to work with Ayers.
But what really makes me laugh is the continual denial you get from Republitwats every time something they research blows up in their faces. Republicans found this guy, payed him to get the answers they wanted and are now crying 'foul' when he won't just roll over and give them a page full of lies. Sort of how you guys treated any member of the CIA that disagreed with your assumptions about Iraq.
If the media reports the truth, all you hear is whining from the right-wing extremists about them being biased. If they refuse to report the news as written by the Bush administration, they're biased.
But no, this website comes from the UK. We have something called a free press. Which means they don't have to write a version of the news any particular government would like to hear. They write it as they see it. Something someone so indoctrinated into the Bush way of thinking couldn't understand.
The saddest part really, is how the Republican party allowed Rove to destroy their principles and is now run by whackjob religious freaks. These attempts to pollute schools with religious dogma instead of science, these attempts to frame a communist style government as some sort of heroic organisation crusading in a war on terror. Tell me, if the war on terror is supposed to be going after terrorists, why does all the illegal wiretapping seem focused purely on US citizens.
All I can say is it's time to bring some morality and respectability back to the White House. Get rid of the liars and the corrupt. We're tired of big government and cronyism. Not to mention the pedophilia Republicans seemed to be engaged in just before the last election. Yes I remember that one too, send your kid to work in Congress, just don't expect him to return a virgin if he's an intern for a Republican. Probably saw what the Catholics were up to and figured all right wing Christians should be doing the same thing.
1) go back and follow up the history of this story. It starts on a right-wing nutjob's website. It got picked up by Matt Drudge, and even he had the nous to insert some "now I'm not sure about this but it sounds fishy to me" caveat (you may have to look up some words in that sentence).
2) no doubt you believe the don (from Oxford, not Sicily) is in on the conspiracy. Yeah, you say "he is either completely ignorant of or denying knowledge of what has thrown weight behind the issue in the US". Hey, I guess I'm in on it too, as well as The Register (have they gone all "mainstream"?).
3) I have not read the analysis you linked to, but as you didn't choose to present any "smoking gun" evidence from it, I assume there is none.
4) polygraphs are complete pseudo-science. They do not work. Besides, you are the one making extraordinary claims, so it behoves you to provide evidence.
5) you'd really be better off claiming Obama is a member of Skull and Bones, or has ties to the Bilderbergs or Rotschilde oligarchies. At least you'd pique the attention of the tinfoil-hat brigade.
6) nobody's calling you a closet Nazi. You're just not well adjusted to reality.
no foal, no fee?
I hope the good don got his $10,000 for the work done, regardless of how his research turned out.
Erm. You obviously didn't read Dr. Millican's article very closely, did you? Or, well, you probably didn't read it at all.
It consists in its entirety of a detailed refutation of all the analyses made by...um...Jake Cashill.
Your suggestion that Dr. Millican was unaware of Mr. Cashill's analysis is, therefore, likely to prove a bit tough to support. =)
Hee hee, it's awfully entertaining watching the republicans flail about in desperation like this!
So if Ayers didn't write Obama's Memoir...
Correct me if I am wrong but I don't see this reported anywhere on this website or (no surprise) on Schneier's Blog.
"Obama Ignores Credit Card Donation Fraud" http://www.newsmax.com/timmerman/obama_illegal_donations/2008/10/21/142761.html
I wonder why?
What a Joke
What a joke .
But then again , if the other party wins ...............
>"Amercian Thinker is what they would term "extremist right wing""
Obviously not a regular reg reader otherwise he'd know that the term would be oxymoron, even more so when alleged thinker has a gun.
Absence of evidence is not essence of absinth
Who wrote Ayers' book?
I suppose this place doesn't exactly promote itself as an unbiased news source, but this article goes beyond editorialising into the realms of propaganda. With these kind of shenanigans, it is actually much more effective to report the facts and step back, letting the actions of the protagonists speak for themselves. When the reporter takes sides so obviously, he becomes part of the nonsense and throws away his credibility.
Mmmm I wonder if any Repulicans ever funded that little known terrorist organisantion called the IRA, you now that little band of romantic freedom fighters, who in no way taught most of their middle eastern counterparts their terror techniques....Nah of course they didn't.
Next I'll be telling you that the US supported and funded the Taliban....
laughing at all the anti-republican comments....like the other side is much better. It's the same as this country - you have the choice of which turd you'd like, but's it's still a turd.
The US will continue to focus exclusively on their own interests and we'll live with the consequences, while everybody will feel better because the US President will be charismatic....
@So if Ayers didn't write Obama's Memoir...
It was written by the same person who wrote the works of Shakespeare. Photographs of him don't develop properly, but he's been living in the basement of a Masonic lodge with John Dillinger on the island of Fernando Poo. (You didn't hear it from me.)
Flocke has a good point though: if we can just show that Ayers didn't write Ayers' book, then the analysis doesn't mean anything! Maybe Ayers was too lazy to write his own memoir, but felt Obama's life is so much more interesting that he would shed his innate non-writer nature and try his hand at ghostwriting, because most liberal professors love to do a whole bunch of work without getting any name recognition out of it. It's a compelling argument.
Perhaps they both used the same ghost writer?
Perhaps they both learnt writing from the same teacher or text books?
Perhaps they both used the same editor?
Perhaps the claim is bullsh*t?
Not sure about this linking thing...
So what if Obama's memoir was written by a home-grown 'terrorist', what does it matter? It's not like links with terrorists have been an issue before....!!
Next they'll be going after Mandela because he was a 'terrorst'... no 'partisan'....no 'terrorist'... no 'freedom fighter'...
Black Helicopter as I'm not one for calling Mandela a terrorist!
I thought everyone was a terrorist now?
I am sure it was used to replace the word person, in dictionaries.
The amount of times it gets bandied about, it may as well be.
The Idea that...
The Oxford don would lie and throw away his whole lifes work for a bit of publicity for a political party that may or may not be in power in another country in a few weeks time seems a bit unlikley.
Having said that I am probably wasting my time, as some people will still shout "well they are in on it" every time someone offers up evidence that the moon landings are real. Perhaps it is best not to take the bait of these fools, who will just claim I was paid to write this as a way of ignoring all evidence, and just laugh to myself about how they will forever living in ignorance of everything that dose not fit there world view.
Bry(lli)ant troll, TMatt!
@The Oxford don would lie and throw away his whole life's work for a bit of publicity
Yep, and for 10 grand. Dollars, == green bogpaper nowadays. Worth not-a-lot in squids even with the credit crunch. But, useful if you've got the squits...however, Zimbabwean 1M dollars are bigger, and your finger don't go through so easy.
Agreee totally. That's fuc*king likely. NOT!!
(I was paid a pony by El-Reg to write this and agree with you by the way. True as I'm riding this bike. Honest.).
Speaking for myself, I'm not laughing at the anti-GOP comments, I'm laughing at the anti-fucktard and anti-asshat comments. That there seem to be an awful lot more of them aimed at Republitards than Demotards is probably something to do with the generally lower IQ of the former group, as evidenced by their almost touching belief in God, Creation and the healing power of heavy weaponry...
so yes, while I align myself with your /plague o' both their houses/ view, it doesn't mean I can't point at their supporters and giggle "I can see the Emperor's willy..."
@AC 02:51 GMT - Typical
I think you'll find that story amply reported in US based political websites. I note with horror that the Drudge Report has nothing on Ubuntu 8.10. Also American Thinker remains silent on the new Intel chips.
I wonder why?
It's a conspiracy I tell you!
what way's the wind blowing?
Bill Ayers for President!
RE: Andy Bright
"....But no, this website comes from the UK. We have something called a free press...." EXACTLY! I read this website for the technical news and opinions, and I don't see why there should be used as a vehicle for Democrat propaganda by Cade Metz and his ilk. Is it too much to ask that the the Reg, a technical website, sticks to technical matters? If the Reg was posting political articles in a balanced manner I might just ignore it, but when Cade and Co post their twaddle it's like a visit to Daily Kos (and if you have never visited Daily Kos, don't bother unless you enjoy the muterrings of the seriously paranoid and deluded). If I want political comment I go look at the Fox, CNN, BBC, Washington Post, Times, etc, etc. If I want to know the latest rabid whinings of the left here in the UK I go to Indymedia (and laugh for hours). I'd rather the Reg stayed true to its original readership and stuck to technical and industry news. To be honest, Cade Metz can get on his bike and go back to San Francisco.
@Matt, yes it is too much to ask
"Is it too much to ask that the the Reg, a technical website, sticks to technical matters? "
Yes. it is too much to ask. We are all techies, true, but we are also - first and foremost - citizens, of our nation and ultimately of the world.
As Donne said: "No man is an island, entire of itself, every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main ...any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind", for those that don't speak deathless prose that means that the current situation in the US matters to all of us. Its not quite a battle between good and evil, but its certainly one between a reality based government and something else.
"If the Reg was posting political articles in a balanced manner"
Fair and Balanced? Like Fox News? I don't think so. This is El Reg, not some Rupert Murdoch rag. I'll stick with reality thanks, as reported by The Register, which is rarely fair and never balanced, but always a lot more interesting.
"I might just ignore it, but when Cade and Co post their twaddle it's like a visit to Daily Kos (and if you have never visited Daily Kos, don't bother unless you enjoy the muterrings of the seriously paranoid and deluded). "
So, you don't like Daily Kos. OK. Its a matter of taste and I often find the pages too schmaltzy and American (lots of stories about people crying - often in hospital car parks because they can't afford medicine, that kind of thing.). Conversely I'd imagine that you find the analysis hard to understand. They use lots of words and numbers.
That said, Daily Kos does do rather well, both in terms of readers with around 2.5million pages impressions a day and as political activists. They raised about $2m for the US election, so if they are seriously paranoid and deluded - normally conditions that stop people being successful - they are doing remarkably well.
For those that don't know the Daily Kos are led by a former Republican, Markos Moulitsas Zúniga. Daily Kos was founded because "Kos", a former soldier, was appalled at the way that his former comrades were being thrown into unwinnable wars. Reg-regular Lewis Page might have a grimace of recognition here.
"If I want political comment I go look at the Fox, CNN, BBC, Washington Post, Times, etc, etc. "
Fox, and the Times are Murdoch-owned, so tend to be very right wing. In the case of Fox its very, very far-right wing. BBC is independent, but offers almost no real political commentary as it has no official viewpoint - in short the BBC is pretty bland.
The Washington Post, although called "liberal" in the US (well, by Richard Nixon) is, in reality, centre-to-far-right; the Washington Post employs noted Neo-Con Charles Krauthammer and it still rabidly supports the US invasion of Iraq and privatisation of social security - hardly centrist positions.
"If I want to know the latest rabid whinings of the left here in the UK I go to Indymedia (and laugh for hours). "
You laugh for hours at stories like the current Indymedia front page of the anniversary of the massacres at Safsaf, al-Dawayima and Kafr Qasim villages? That seems a little odd. Even Israel apologised for the Kafr Qasim massacre (in 2007). Maybe its just a bad choice of day to say that... I'm sure that protesting causes you concern, which is fine. Still, where do you stand on the murder of anti-abortion doctors by American fundamentalists? Better or worse than protesting a new road? Its purely a question, intended to make you think a bit.
Actually Matt... I have to ask... you are aware that you've already been taken apart by a half dozen commentators for not knowing what you are talking about, or comprehending a fairly simple report that you yourself were examining? Boasting about your ability to read at this stage seems a little arrogant.
"I'd rather the Reg stayed true to its original readership and stuck to technical and industry news. To be honest, Cade Metz can get on his bike and go back to San Francisco."
I think that sticking to technical news when there are other more important stories would be suicidal for The Reg. Following this advice would lead it ultimately to a dead end - people read zdnet or slashdot, but no one cares about them.
The Reg's coverage of the US election has been challenging, cynical, grumpy, backbiting and occasionally wise. Its been everything we would expect from them. To the Reg team, well done.