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You Are Dumb, which is not a blog, posts new columns every weekday, except for a couple of days each month when it doesn't. It is also a Twitter feed, @youaredumb, with content in a similar vein but much shorter. My spinoff food site, Forkbastard, can be found easily enough by the clever.
Archive - Mar 12, 2012
Memo to Joe Arpaio: IT'S AN INTERESTING THEORY.
So, this happened. A couple of weeks ago, Maricopa County sheriff and melanin-chaser Joe Arpaio held a press conference in which he announced that his carefully-selected team of private investigators have determined that Barack Obama's long form birth certificate, posted on the Internet by the White House, is in fact an electronic document.
This is not a shocking revelation, of course. You can't push real paper through the series of tubes that make up the Internet. It's been tried a few times, but the fact remains, documents on the Internet are, by and large, electronic. Of course, Arpaio claims that the document was never paper in the first place, which is certainly a hypothesis, but it's not the "interesting theory" I'm talking about.
No, the "interesting theory" in question is Arpaio's response to the claim that his dog and pony show* is just a ruse to distract the voters of Maricopa County from Arpaio's many shortcomings, including the Justice Department investigating him for racial profiling, hundreds of sex abuse cases going uninvestigated because everyone's so busy racially-profiling, and his aforementioned-if-you-read-the-footnotes-at-the-appropriate-time adventures with Steven Seagal which have resulted in another recent lawsuit. This is his theory. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!
"'You say I need this to get elected? Are you kidding me? I've been elected five times. I don't need this."
Well, you do have sort of a point there. I mean, if the residents of Maricopa County are dumb enough to re-elect you four times (we'll let the first election go out of mercy), they might be dumb enough to re-elect you a fifth time, after you've been accused of civil rights violations, dereliction of duty, and running over the pets of suspected illegal immigrants with your best buddy, a bloated former action star and fake Buddhist.
But it's also likely that yes, these incidents are actually more embarrassing to the people of Maricopa County than your entire career to date. And if that's the case, what better way into the hearts of people apparently unconcerned by your normal tent city, forced labor, and generally race-based style of policing is to get a bunch of World Net Daily posters to type up their message board posts about "evidence of layering" and "white halos" onto actual paper so that it looks official.
But if I were Joe Arpaio, I'd be really, really concerned about one thing. Nobody took him seriously. I mean, not nobody - obviously, the crazy third who thought Obama was a foreigner the instant they saw that he wasn't white now feel completely vindicated because someone with a badge agrees with them - but nobody in any position of authority agrees with him. Nobody in the press. Not even Fox Nation, the poorly-curated web wing of Fox News that lets all kinds of crazy shit through its gates, just reprinted a chunk of a CBS story and closed the comments.
So really, the only way this little farce will help Arpaio is if everyone in Maricopa County is a smart thinker. Wait, that's not what I meant. I meant to say it will help if everyone in Maricopa County is like "smart-thinker", the funniest name for a newspaper commenter in the history of newspaper commenting, who posted the following to the Chicago Sun-Times:
"It's so sad when people can't think for themselves and are just like a herd of sheep. It already HAS been proven that the birth certificate is totally fake and that Osama, oops, Obama, IS a fraud. But the Godless lamestream media will NOT let the truth be told. But, I know that it says in the Bible that 'there is no government authority in power, that God didn't put there'. So, knowing what it says about the end times in Revelation and also, knowing that we are in the phrophetic end times, I think God has allowed Obama to be where he is, to fulfill what is going to happen. Please people, read the New Testament and believe before it's too late!"
But if God has put Obama into office to bring about the End Times, then Joe Arpaio, in his quest to prove the illegitimacy of Barack Obama, is CIRCUMVENTING GOD'S WILL. And the so-called "lamestream media", by not letting the truth be told, are actually helping God bring about the End Times. So who's the real bad guy here?
By the way, a number of birther-curious commenters also criticized the author for not going into Arpaio's evidence, something common to all of the AP-sourced reports I could find. That's not the press being biased against Arpaio, folks. That's the press being KIND TO HIM. Actually describing the alleged "evidence" would actually be the most helpful thing to Obama. Well, the second most helpful thing. The most helpful thing would be to include quotes from the press conference like "We have identified the computer manufacturer that uploaded that file", so that people could laugh at them.
Which computer manufacturer uploaded the file? Was it Dell? Hewlett-Packard? What does it even mean to claim that a computer manufacturer uploaded a file? Answer those questions in a way that makes a lick of sense, and I still won't take you seriously, but I will at least have the common decency to admit to being very, very surprised.
It'll be interesting to see if birtherism will succeed in making Joe Arpaio a laughingstock, when so many other things you'd have sworn would have succeeded at that incredibly easy task have failed over the years. Still, better that it happen late than not happen at all.
*Not a show, by the way, where he and Steven Seagal run over a dog and a pony with a tank - I'm just speaking colloquially.