Whitewashing Orly Taitz
WorldNetDaily is too close to the anti-Obama attorney to tell its readers the truth about her increasingly questionable legal work on birth certificate-related issues.
By Terry Krepel
WorldNetDaily has long had a symbiotic relationship with Orly Taitz, the California attorney/dentist/real estate agent who has been a lead filer of lawsuits against President Obama regarding his birth certificate.
WND has enabled Taitz by uncritically reporting her anti-Obama legal actions without noting factual errors in them. For instance, WND articles on July 11, July 14, July 15, and July 20 repeated Taitz's suggestion that in order to qualify as a "natural born citizen" under the constitutional requirement to hold the presidency, both parents must be American citizens; that would disqualify Obama because his father was not an American citizen. But has WND eventually admitted in an Aug. 10 article, there are "arguments over just exactly what is a 'natural born' citizen" and "a consensus on the correct definition of 'natural born citizen' has eluded lawyers and scholars for more than 200 years."
Farah has responded in kind by fluffing Taitz, asserting that "this lady is rapidly becoming one of my heroes" and adding that "I'm ready to give her any support she needs to adjudicate this issue." WND has also published a slobbering sycophantic profile of Taitz, portraying her as "the fierce blond attorney behind Obama eligibility lawsuits, a successful dentist with two offices, a second-degree black belt and a mother of three boys who speaks five languages." Taitz even stars in WND's video purporting to offer "the straight facts" on the birth certificate issue.
Because WND and Taitz are so close, WND has neglected to tell its readers about Taitz's questionable legal work and the questions even Taitz's fellow travelers in the birther movement have raised about her.
ConWebWatch has already detailed how WND has refused to report on previous notable Taitz-related events. In April, a formal complaint was filed in the California bar against Taitz. Among the allegations in the complaint:
The complaint has been filed anonymously, the author claims, due to Taitz's history of retaliating against her critics.
Also in April, Philip Berg -- the same person whose legal actions over the birth certificate WND first endeavored to shoot down until it decided that they served its anti-Obama agenda -- filed a lawsuit against Taitz, accusing her and various associates of "harassing" Berg and fellow plaintiffs (among them Taitz's former webmaster), and filing "falsified police and law enforcement reports" regarding her claims against the former webmaster. Berg noted in his filing that "Taitz is no stranger to falsifying stories and falsely claiming to be the victim of 'hacking' of her websites" and accuses Taitz of plagiarizing the briefs he filed in his birth certificate-related actions for her own filings. Berg also claimed that an investigator working for Taitz dug up alleged information about an employee of Berg's and "sent the information to Taitz and a reporter with World Net Daily" complete with the employee's full Social Security number, which neither the investigator nor Taitz had "permissible purpose to obtain."
As the Yes to Democracy blog reported, Taitz was to file her response to Berg's claims electronically by May 26 (Memorial Day, a holiday). Instead, Taitz filed paper copies that did not arrive at the clerk's office until the day after the deadline. Berg then sought an entry of default against Taitz, which the court granted.
Such failure to follow established and ordered court procedure is rapidly becoming par for the course for Taitz.
In early August, Salon.com reported that a federal court ordered Taitz's submission of the now-discredited Kenyan "birth certificate" -- which WND tried to find reasons to stand behind until the weight of facts against it caused it to concur with its discrediting -- to be stricken from the record, stating that Taitz's motion was improperly filed "for the following reasons: Lacks proper notice; improper form and format; Counsel failed to identify her Cal. State Bar No.; description of motion conflicts or differs from that which counsel entered on Court's e-docket." Salon added: "The electronic court record for the case, in which she's representing Alan Keyes, among others, is filled with similar procedural errors on her part."
The Orange County Register reported on Aug. 18 about Taitz's indifference to procedural rules, to the point that she wanted a judge removed from her case for enforcing them:
In the lastest quirky drama of Mission Viejo attorney Orly Taitz's lawsuit to get President Barack Obama tossed from office, she has filed a motion today asking that Magistrate Judge Arthur Nakazato by removed from the case. She says that Nakazato is holding up the case by being "hyper-formalistic."
Taitz has also lost two of the plaintiffs in one of her lawsuits. As the Orange County Register has also reported, Wiley Drake -- who is on record praying for Obama's death, another fact WND has hidden from its readers -- and fellow plaintiff Markham G. Robinson notified Taitz that they were replacing her as counsel:
Drake complained that Taitz's paperwork errors have delayed proceedings.
Kreep’s concern about Taitz’s “Kenyan birth certificate” came out of his own experience in being offered fishy or fraudulent “smoking gun” documents about Obama’s past. “I’ve gotten tips about birth certificates that are purported to be original, snuck out of Kenya, yadda yadda,” Kreep said. “Then, all of a sudden, the people offering these things disappear into the woodwork. Some people are definitely putting together hoaxes to damage our cause.”
Taitz's attempt to introduce the discredited "Kenyan" certificate in court without first making any effort to verify its authenticity is splitting the anti-Obama birther movement, according to the Independent:
Michael Patrick Leahy, the conservative activist behind Top Conservatives on Twitter (#tcot), wondered why the attorney published the document online instead of verifying the claims herself. “Ms. Taitz is asking a Federal Judge to authorize a fishing expedition for documents pertaining to President Obama’s birth that might exist in the Governmental files of the Republic of Kenya, and she fails to offer any evidence as to the origin of the digital image upon which this request is based?”
Of course, that appears to be the same kind of reasoning that led to WND's promotion of the "Kenyan birth certificate" and efforts to portray it as authentic.
What is likely giving more pause to Taitz's fellow birthers is her extreme views on other issues. Esquire magazine's John H. Richardson listed some of the other conspiracy theories Taitz has spouted:
Goldman Sachs runs the treasury.
Salon's Gabriel Winant cited many of the same conspiracies coming up during his interview of Taitz. Winant added:
Talking to Taitz was like watching a James Bond movie, only I couldn't follow the plot. I just knew that Obama was going to show up in the climactic scene, stroking the white cat on his lap and cackling in Swahili.
WorldNetDaily will not tell you any of this. Why? Presumably because, as Farah said, he's "ready to give her any support she needs," and telling the full truth about Taitz does not fit in with that agenda. WND is simply too close to Taitz to be objective.
Then again, there may be a sea change in the offing. As of this writing, WND has not mentioned Taitz in a news article since the "Kenyan birth certificate" was exposed as a fraud. Perhaps WND is feeling burned by Taitz over the issue, even though WND brought that embarrassment on itself by publishing the certificate and suggesting it was real without bothering to do any investigation of its own.
But that's the price you pay when you're too close to a source. WND earned the discredit it brought on itself, and has only itself to blame.
Ignoring Taitz after months of championing her, however, is not the same as telling the truth about her. Do Farah and WND have the journalistic guts to tell their readers about Taitz's questionable lawyering and her wackjob conspiracies?
WND has long disregarded facts when it comes to Obama, and there's little to show that it will act any differently now -- even toward someone like Orly Taitz, who has demonstrated an unmistakable level of incompetence and a willingness to be even more reckless and irresponsible than WND.