Monday, July 9, 2012

Weekly Roundup, July 2-8, 2012 - UPDATE: Regarding Gryphen and his claim that other bloggers want to "sabotage" his research - Gryphen's "ruffled ear theory"

by Blueberry T

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Would you hire someone who said they were going to drastically cut programs, but wouldn’t say which ones?  That’s what Mitt Romney is asking America to do.  He says that he learned from his “mistake” in giving details during his losing Senate campaign against Ted Kennedy.  So just trust him, okay?  Sunnyjane’s post is packed with information and links about his non-responsiveness on the federal budget, fair pay and violence against women legislation, the Dream Act, closing tax loopholes and closing federal departments.  She also highlights Republicans’ post-election plans to sabotage President Obama’s administration; sadly, their treasonous strategy worked well in the 2010 midterm elections.  Since then, President Obama has taken the fight to them more effectively, so that their obstructionism is more transparent.  Now, he is highlighting the Romney campaign’s lame attempt to parse the difference between “out-sourcing” and “off-shoring” jobs… heh heh, what a great campaign strategy, to focus attention on the difference between jobs in Nebraska and jobs in China and India.  BTW, Rupert Murdoch is not impressed with Romney’s campaign. ;-)    

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Sunnyjane sharpens her master wit like the chiselers of Mt. Rushmore, focusing on Romney’s refusal to explain what he really would do about – well, pretty much everything, because, as noted in the last post, if people really knew where he stands and what he would do as president, well, he would lose!  Can’t have that, for Pete’s sake!  In this excellent post, Sunnyjane uncovers the ugly roots of Arizona’s immigration legislation, showing that it was developed with the support of Neo Nazis/white supremacists.  Mitt Romney has praised the Arizona law and repeatedly criticized President Obama’s approach, vowing to end the Administration’s legal challenge on “Day One” of a Romney Presidency.  Hopefully, “Day One” will never come; but in the mean time, the Supreme Court pre-empted his threatened action by striking down most of the AZ law.  What would he do now?  In typical Romney fashion, in an interview with Bob Schieffer, he tried to deflect and answer a different question, and when Schieffer didn’t allow him to evade the question altogether, he said, “…we’ll look at that…”  Sounds just like Sarah Palin saying she’d check and get back to ya… (but never did).   (Have I mentioned what a genius Sunnyjane is at picking great cartoons and illustrations, too?)

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Patrick gave us a wonderful treat: his photos from the visit to Venice, where Kathleen and he met Leadfoot and the aptly-named Bella!  His pictures are certainly worth more than thousands of words; our readers really enjoyed our “virtual vacation.”  Enjoy!

Some comments and links:

NJfan:  It was a hate-fest and whine-fest all rolled into one coming from a single mom who hates her responsibilities...that's how I see it.

Patrick:   … I cannot remember to have watched such a disgusting, repulsive piece of garbage on TV before. The Palins are so immersed in their sick world of hate and revenge that they don't realize how repulsive they actually are.

CacklingRad:  It's easy to say to your child, "Don't do that. Put that down. You want a time out?" The hard part is getting up off your butt, putting down your iPhone, and enforcing what you just said. Kids learn very quickly when their moms are too lazy to actually follow through with threats or prohibitions; they know they can just ignore them, and so they do… Todd's little speech struck an odd note, because he really nailed it: Bristol isn't the world's only single mother, and even mothers with husbands are frequently left alone with their children. 

Cheeriogirl:  "I pledge allegiance to my cash and to the accounts I hold outside of America, and to the Republicans who know that for nothing I stand, one oligarchy, with millions for us, and I won't reveal my taxes to the small."

Linda1961:  Honestly, if Rmoney can't deal with the MSM, most of which is lame because they insist upon dealing with false equivalencies, how does he expect to deal all of the problems and people that our president has to handle?

Maelewis:  What beautiful pictures and what a beautiful experience!  Thank you so much for sharing it with us.  Of course we have to laugh when we remember Bristol explaining to the reality TV cameras that she wanted to show Tripp the world by exposing him briefly to a Celebrity's View of Los Angeles. She taught him to stick his tongue out at people. She got in a fight and she hated the place-- as did poor Willow, the babysitter. Leadfoot really did show Bella "The World," or a least a good part of it. It looked as if Bella will have much better memories of that special, shared experience with her mother. 

Ennealogic:  What a terrific and joyful journal!  Pictures do tell a story and this tale is like a richly woven tapestry, a pleasure to behold.  Leadfoot, be sure and tell Bella that the internet people love meeting her this way, and that at least one of them thinks she looks totally awesome in the feather and lace mask.  That is a fantastic photo!

Older_Wiser pointed out this very positive Forbes article on the medical loss ratio provision of the Affordable Care Act:  The Bomb Buried in Obamacare Explodes Today – Hallelujah!
She also asked why Clarence Thomas should not be censured and impeached for not having recused himself re ACA.  

MrsTBB linked to Vanity Fair’s excellent article on Mitt’s offshore bank accounts.  

HonestyinGov pointed out this at Slate on Romney’s “evolving position” on whether the individual mandate is a tax and this piece on Dem talking points about Romney’s offshore accounts and calling him the “deadbeat dad” of the ACA.   

Here is Robert Reich on Romney, Bain and the New Gilded Age.  

The Last Word (with h/t to Linda 1961):
" A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines." Ralph Waldo Emerson


Update by Patrick:

Hi everyone,

you know that we try to avoid any discussions about Gryphen and his "comments", as ignoring them turned out the best way of saving time and energy, but he again left an incredibly stupid comment, and we just would like to clarify some points. In his latest "ask uncle Gyphen" post...

...the following exchange can be found:


Anonymous 9:40 AM
What criteria do you use in censoring posts? I've tried to post some things referencing other anti-Palin sites and you haven't allowed them through. What gives?

Gryphen 10:35 AM
There are a couple of blogs that do far more harm then good, in their attempts to attract visitors. Some that are working behind the scenes to sabotage any research that they are not in control of, and some who simply pick preschool fights with me in order to troll for hits to their blogs which apparently they cannot manage on their own.

The internet is a wide open place, and they are free to do as they wish, but I have no responsibility to help those who engage in such tactics gain attention. 

By the way ANYBODY who poses as a teenage girl to gain Levi Johnston's trust is a blogger whose motives his visitor's might do well to question.

I'm just saying.


So Gryphen sees dark forces at work who "sabotage research" and "pick preschool fights." I am not sure what exactly he is talking about, but he might not have like the fact that for example Brad Scharlott rejected Gryphen's "ruffled ear theory" in several recent blog posts. I agree with Brad's conclusions. But factually discussing the theories of other bloggers has nothing to do with "sabotaging research", but is simply the correct way of finding the truth. We do know that Gryphen is not prepared to allow criticism towards his cherished theories, and that's also why for example Palingates decided not to publish a "rebuttal post" right after the "ruffled ear theory" was first published on IM. Back then, it was a very tense situation between the blogs, and we didn't want to stir up any further tensions.

We are in favour of free speech and the free exchange of ideas and theories. Nothing is sacred. That's also why we believe in uncensored comments. Gryphen is right, the internet is a "wide open place", but if one is not prepared to "accept" the openness of the internet, where people have different perceptions, theories and ideas, then the internet is probably the wrong medium for you.

As to Gryphen's last remark, he obviously was talking about Kathleen's facebook profile, for which Kathleen used a picture of one of her daughters as an avatar. Let's just say that everybody who deals over facebook with Kathleen knows EXACTLY who she is. For example, as far as Levi Johnston is concerned, Kathleen made it perfectly clear to him in a personal message, before she posted any comments on his facebook page, that she was Kathleen who ran the blog Politicalgates, and she told him that the avatar was a photograph of her youngest daughter, taken by her eldest daughter. Kathleen did not pretend to be a teenager in order to try to "gain Levi's trust."

Gryphen could have saved himself the embarrassment, if he has such ideas, and could have emailed us in order to ask for clarification. That's what grown-ups do.

I don't think that anyone here would have expected otherwise, apart from Gryphen, whose head is apparently full of dark fantasies about evil bloggers who don't like his theories and want to sabotage him. This is all a sad state of affairs, and has ultimately been very damaging for the "Babygaters" as a whole. In his defence, Gryphen is obviously influenced by some people who, behind the scenes, wrongly and self-servingly blame Kathleen and me for the demise of "Palindeception", but unfortunately Gryphen (who was never a part of Palindeception) was never interested to get to know the full, incredibly well documented truth about what happened (all email exchanges and internal board discussions have been saved) - the truth consisting of facts which Kathleen and I have never published in order to protect other people, even if it meant that we could have easily "exonerated" ourselves.

So probably this game will go on forever, but in the end, we are here to find the truth, and if Gryphen plans to defend his theories to the end of days, right or wrong, and to smear other bloggers who don't agree with him, he is free to do that - but that's not how you find the truth and push this topic back in the mainstream media, which for example Brad Scharlott tried last year, with the strong support of Politicalgates - and also the support of IM. Gryphen should remember that only bloggers who are united will achieve something in the end, even if they disagree about some of the "facts." What is a well-know fact is that circular firing squads only take out each other, not the enemy.


Update 2 (by Patrick):

I also would like to quote from Professor Brad Scharlott's incredibly interesting post from July 5, 2012, in which he discusses (and dismisses) the "ruffled ear theory" and also mentioned what Gryphen said to him in email conversation, together with new other information about Sarah Palin's lawyer contacting Brad Scarlott's university.

Brad reveals that the "two Trig theory", which he considered in previous articles as a possibility, was used against him in the letter sent by Palin's attorney to him as well as by Brad's university attorney in a subsequent discussion. Brad is clearly very angry that this theory, which he sharply rebutted in a previous and the above mentioned post, is used against the "Trig Truthers" in order to discredit them, and he is angry about Gryphen's behaviour, who mocked Brad in email messages and said that he would delete any comments on IM which would attempt to refute his own evidence and also called himself a "famous blogger":

My greatest mistake as a scholar and researcher was buying into the two-Trigs theory that Jesse Griffin, also known as Gryphen at his blog site Immoral Minority, has been pushing for more than two years now.


There is, to be sure, some ear deformity in the first photo that is less noticeable in the second, but that is surely due to both the aging process (Trig was much younger in the first photo) and optical factors, such as different lighting, lens types, and angles in the two pictures.

Why do I say Griffin is more interested in protecting his reputation than finding the truth? Because he absolutely refuses to show his readers the evidence that makes his theory practically untenable – meaning illustrations like the one immediately above that I showed here in a series of seven posts in October aimed at killing the two-Trigs theory. Moreover, I would bet a case of beer that Griffin has not shown the ear experts he consulted the above four-panel composite. If he did, they would almost certainly change their original judgment.

And that makes Griffin an intellectual coward. At one point, I tried to direct his readers to my research by placing in the comments to some of his articles the web addresses to my ear-related posts. In a personal email to me, he mocked me for doing that and let me know he would delete any such efforts on my part.

So what do we make of that email of Griffin’s? What I conclude is very sad: Griffin will not publish evidence, or even link to evidence, that challenges his own ideas. I cannot overstate how antithetical such actions are to the spirit of the search for truth, which is the animating spirit among true scholars.


Griffin has become the opposite of a scholar searching for truth. He does not seek out all evidence relevant to a theory he has proposed. Any evidence that contradict his publicly stated ideas gets axed. He has created a bubble of ignorance for himself and his readers. And, here is the tragedy: he has empowered Sarah Palin to paint all Trig Truthers as nut-cases because of his unwillingness to consider evidence or ideas that challenge his own.

I know from personal experience how Sarah Palin makes use of Griffin's theory. As I said, before I looked closely at the evidence, I bought into the two-Trig's idea. (In other words, I foolishly relied on Griffin’s research, which was shallow and unimaginative.) And I incorporated that theory into a version of a magazine-type article about the birth hoax that I sent to various publications last summer. I also sent a copy to Sarah Palin in August to give her a chance to respond to my charge that she faked Trig's birth.

Palin did not respond directly to that article. But in February, months after I had tried to kill the two-Trigs theory, Palin's attorney sent a six-page letter to my university, in an effort to get my employer to force me to stop writing about Palin. In that letter, he ignored the fact that I had very publicly rejected the two-Trigs theory, and instead emphasized that I had advanced it in the article I sent Palin. And thus he was able to make me look like a gullible idiot in that letter he wrote, twice referring to my views as "insane."

Our university's attorney, who has had no reason to follow the Palin birth hoax, clearly bought some his arguments, in large part because of the implausibility of the two-Trigs stuff. And I had to suffer the slings and arrows of her withering skepticism about my research in a meeting she held with me and my two immediate superiors.


In his last email to me, Griffin referred to himself as a "famous blogger." He has a large readership, so he is famous in a sense. But the fact that he thinks of himself in such terms perhaps reveals part of the problem: being "famous" in his own mind, with many acolytes effectively telling him in comments that he is practically infallible – but remember that he he nixes the dissenting voices – he may have convinced himself he is indeed infallible, and cannot bring himself to admit he made a mistake.

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