Activist Linked to Obama Not So Extreme After All Topic: WorldNetDaily
Among the numerous guilt-by-association attacks WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein has hurled at Barack Obama was that Obama served on the board of a charitable organization that "granted funding to a controversial Arab group that mourns the establishment of Israel as a "catastrophe" and supports intense immigration reform." That group was headed by "Columbia University professor Rashid Khalidi."
Apparently, Khalidi is not as extreme as Klein made him out to be. From an Aug. 3 Newsmax article by Ken Timmerman:
Since 2004, The State Department has provided $340,000 in taxpayer dollars to the Palestinian American Research Center (PARC), co-chaired by Columbia University professor Rashid Khalili [sic], who served as a spokesman for late Palestinian Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat at a time when the PLO was still considered a terrorist organization by the U.S. government.
While both Klein and Timmerman made an attempt to play up Kahlidi's purported extremist views -- and Klein never mentioned Khalidi's State Department funding at all -- neither offered any evidence that the money given to his organizations by either the Obama-linked group or the State Department was used for any extremist causes.
Further, Timmerman's article -- which specifically calls out former Bush adviser Karen Hughes as awarding money to "radical Islamist organizations," pretty surprising from the pro-GOP Newsmax -- cites Steven Emerson as the source of its allegations; Timmerman describes Emerson as a "respected terrorism expert." Er, not so much.
WorldNetDaily's Joseph Farah has been yet another mini-crusade of late, trying to get people to pressure Congress into dropping all restrictions on drilling for oil in the U.S.. From a July 20 WND article:
"I want to bring Congress to its knees," he says. "I want to melt down their phones. I want to flood their e-mail boxes. I want to hold them as political hostages. The ransom demand is to unleash the free market to begin exploring and pumping domestic crude oil and getting it to market as fast as possible. We've got 75 days to make our voices heard. Let's make history by bringing this recalcitrant body of elitists into compliance with the will of the people and the rule of law."
"We're running out of time," Farah says. "If we let these rascals, these scoundrels, leave town before they lift all their ridiculous bans and restrictions on drilling for domestic oil, this country is headed for a major recession. Even worse, we'll head into a new year and a new presidency with the Washington elite thinking they put one over on us again."
Farah goes on to call it a "bipartisan, non-partisan movement." He's lying, of course; he's reading from Republican talking points, and he's targeting a Democratically-controlled Senate. Indeed, Farah flip-flopped just two days later in an article attacking Democrats for not lifting the offshore drilling moratorium, stating that he targeting "particularly the Democratic leadership" with his activism.
Farah's true partisan motivation has been clear ever since:
A July 24 WND article attacked Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
A July 30 article smeared Barack Obama by falsely portraying a call to keep tires properly inflated to improve gas mileage as the extent of Obama's energy policy.
In all of his attacks, though, Farah has yet to offer any sort of fact-based rebuttal to arguments against expanded offshore drilling -- specifically that oil companies are not currently drilling on millions of acres of offshore land they already have drilling rights to, and that expanded domestic drilling would have a negligible impact on prices.
In other words, Farah's crusade is not just dishonest but mindless as well. And for what? To sell a few overpriced bumper stickers? Hey, he is a businessman, after all.
WND Now Selling Lame Anti-McCain Sticker Topic: WorldNetDaily
Months after it released its first bumper sticker attacking Democratic presidential candidates, WorldNetDaily has finally gotten around to selling one critical of Republican John McCain -- an apparent attempt to cancel out some of the disparity between Joseph Farah's "none of the above" rhetoric and his website's refusal to criticize McCain on its news pages to the extent it does Barack Obama.
Thus, we now have the "McCain Not Able" bumper sticker. However, the utter lameness of the design and the obtuseness of the slogan seems to guarantee that it won't sell well, at least in comparison to its "NObama" sticker, which wins points for pithiness if not originality.
So, how will Farah explain away the fact that his own managing editor, David Kupelian, has endorsed McCain, thus making his "none of the above" pledge utterly disingenuous?
And speaking of disingenuous, Farah writes the following in his Aug. 2 column:
I am serious when I tell you this is the most patriotic vote you can cast this year.
I'm so serious, I have written a book called "None of the Above." I didn't do it to make money. If you want to make money on a book, you don't write one that will be outdated Nov. 5. You don't give yourself a time window of only four months to make sales. And you don't target a market of Americans probably limited to no more than 10 percent to 20 percent of the public.
But that's what I did.
I did it because I am serious about this campaign.
Actually, writing a book to take advantage of a presidential campaign is exactly what you do if you want to make money -- otherwise, there wouldn't be so many books coming out regarding the 2008 election (see Corsi, Jerome). Farah is a businessman who runs a publishing division, after all, and he's not doing that out of the goodness of his heart. Does anyone really believe that Farah does not hope to make some money off his book?
Is Kincaid Colluding With a Commie? Topic: Accuracy in Media
On July 3, Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid published a column in which he ascribed the views of someone who portrayed himself as a communist-sympathetic blogger at Barack Obama's community blog site. Now, one person is fighting back against both the blogger and Kincaid: the son of the man whom Kincaid has been bashing over his connection to Obama.
Kincaid has ginned up right-wing press in recent months by touting poet and activist Frank Marshall Davis as a "Stalinist" and card-carrying communist (even though there's doubt to the accuracy of that claim) who was allegedly "mentoring Obama during his formative high school years in Hawaii." Kincaid's July 3 column touted the writing of Alan Maki, the self-proclaimed communist who's writing a community blog on Obama's website, as offering "deadly confirmation that a hard-core CPUSA member played a key role in helping raise Obama."
Meanwhile, running to the defense of Davis has been his son, Mark Davis, who has appeared in the comment threads of numerous AIM articles to speak out. In a July 29 AIM column by Andrew Walden (who has previously tried to push the false meme that Obama is a "secular Muslim") purporting to expose "the Frank Marshall Davis network in Hawaii," Davis responds to statements made by Kincaid to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Bill Steigerwald:
My objection to the Steigerwald interview, cited by the Honolulu Community Media Council, is primarily based on two unsubstantiated claims:
1. Steigerwald’s unfounded statement that my father was a “lifelong member of the Communist Party USA.”
2. Your unfounded statement that my father was a “Stalinist,” because “He stayed with the Communist Party even after the Hitler-Stalin pact. That’s why I refer to him as `a Stalinist agent’.” You compounded the accusation further by claiming “His values, passed on to Obama, were those of a communist agent who pledged allegiance to Stalin.”
I believe that James Edgar Tidwell, whom you may consider an authority on my father, refutes your statement[.]
Davis also went after Maki in a July 15 post on his own Obama website blog:
In a blatant misappropriation of Obama campaign resources, "communist" blogger Alan Maki is colluding with "conservative" blogger Cliff Kincaid in a disinformation campaign designed to portray Barack Obama as communist-influenced . Accuracy In Media's Kincaid has been running this redbaiting campaign since he published "Obama's Communist Mentor"  in February 2008, in which Kincaid exaggerated the influence of "communist" Frank Marshall Davis (1905-1987) on teenage Obama.
As of July 15, Kincaid's "Communist Party Backs Obama" article, partially based on the fraudulent Alan Maki blog, has over 58,000 Yahoo Search hits.
I have found no indication that Davis ever taught radical political or economic theory to Obama. Instead, Obama tells of Davis's attitude towards higher education and race relations. I believe that Maki's motivation is clear: He considers capitalism to be a "thoroughly rotten system," and is exploiting Obama’s good will towards Frank Marshall Davis for his own convoluted purposes.
Through his "Roundtable For Change" proposal, I believe that Maki is attempting to parlay Obama's respect for Davis's social insight into Obama's support for Maki's war on capitalism. Through his "Obama's Communist Mentor" disinformation, I believe that Cliff Kincaid is attempting to parlay Obama's respect for Davis's social insight into Obama's respect for Davis's "communist" inclinations. They both use disinformation. They talk to each other, which suggests mutual interests. Perhaps the left and right wings have met in the depths of hell and forged a compact against Frank Marshall Davis and Barack Obama. Their common interests include:
1. Opposition to Obama. 2. Using Maki’s blog for their own political agendas. 3. Communication with each other. 4. Use of Maki quotes in Kincaid’s reports.. 5. Exaggeration of Davis’s influence over Obama. 6. Using conservative blogosphere terms like “mentor” in this context, and falsely attributing it to others. 7. Misrepresenting reality to support their positions.
Their mutual use of “mentor” is especially curious, because I can find no use of it (in this context) that predates the conservative blogosphere.
If Maki reads the conservative blogosphere enough to have known about conservative claims regarding Obama’s “mentor,” then he should have known that Kincaid was strongly anti-communist BEFORE he spoke with him. Holding multiple conversations with him becomes even MORE suspicious. This suggests that Alan Maki willingly entered into this relationship with his putative ideological enemy. He knew (or should have known) that Kincaid would exploit his “Roundtable for Change” blog as ammunition against Barack Obama BEFORE his reported conversations with Kincaid, yet he willingly cooperated with Kincaid. This cooperation suggests a serious conflict of interests for Alan Maki.
I challenged Maki's characterization of my father, Frank Marshall Davis, in the comments of his post . I also challenged his association with Cliff Kincaid, and especially his use of the term "mentor" because it has been used extensively by Kincaid's redbaiting campaign.
Unable to answer my questions, Alan Maki suddenly accused me of engaging in a "racist, anti-Semitic hate campaign," and deleted my (and other) critical comments. He fraudulently attributed their removal as being "Deleted by admin," but contradicted himself in his July 14 post by declaring "I am deleting all of your entries."
Kincaid has yet to publicly respond to Davis' accusations of false reporting about Frank Marshall Davis or discuss -- his history of being a rabid anti-communist notwithstanding -- his apparent collusion with a self-proclaimed communist who censors his critics.
Remember Tony Hays, the co-author of the Gore-bashing series of stories WorldNetDaily published in 2000 that drew a lawsuit from Clark Jones and, just before the suit was to go to trial, an admission that the series made false claims about Jones and that "the sources named in the publications have stated under oath that statements attributed to them in the articles were either not made by them, were misquoted by the authors, were misconstrued, or the statements were taken out of context"?
Well, it turns out that Hays has remade himself into a fiction writer (though one might argue that that's what he was doing in his attacks on Gore for WND). His personal website proclaims that "Tony's short fiction has been published across the United States and Japan. His first two mysteries have attracted the attention of both award panels and literary critics." He also claims to be working on "a new historical mystery series for Tor/Forge." (Hays' contact page lists a post office box in Savannah, Tennessee, where the lawsuit against him and WND was filed, so we're pretty sure this is the guy.)
On his blurb page -- which insists that "Tony has been in frequent demand as a guest on radio and college campuses to talk about writing, the Taliban, and Middle East culture" -- Hays throws in a laudatory quote from ... Charles Thompson II, his co-author on the discredited WND series.
Needless to say, Hays makes no mention of the Gore stories or the lawsuit on the website, let alone any indication of whether he still stands by the claims he and Thompson made in it. After all, it stands to reason that if he (the statement issued by WND was purportedly agreed to by all parties in the lawsuit) was attributing claims about Jones by sources that "either not made by them, were misquoted by the authors, were misconstrued, or the statements were taken out of context," he and Thompson did the same thing regarding other claims made in the articles. Besides, having to admit that you essentially libeled someone tends to make that "frequent demand" for your services slacken off a bit.
Is Hagee Retracting His Apologies for Controversial Remarks? Topic: Accuracy in Media
Bethany Stotts writes in an Aug. 1 Accuracy in Media article:
Pastor John Hagee, the head of Christians United for Israel (CUFI) gave a fiery critique of the media at CUFI’s third annual Summit last week. “For several months we’ve found ourselves in the middle of a vicious national media firestorm,” said Hagee, who has been condemned for calling Hurricane Katrina God’s wrath on homosexuals and for calling the Catholic Church “the great whore.”
Hagee criticized the media for twisting his words and for not being willing to accept the “Bible view.” “The problem is that in the marketplace of ideas, a.k.a the media, they do not understand the Bible view. Many of the attacks on us stem from this unfortunate fact,” he said. “For the moment I am happy to report to you that the storm has passed, but I do emphasize ‘for the moment.’”
Stotts ignores that Hagee's new apparent defense of his inflammatory remarks -- and more specifically, his claim that his critics "do not understand the Bible view" -- seems to contradict his previous retraction of them. Hagee retracted his Katrina remarks by saying, "[U]ltimately neither I nor any other person can know the mind of God concerning Hurricane Katrina. I should not have suggested otherwise. No matter what the cause of the storm, my heart goes out to all who suffered in this terrible tragedy." And in a letter to the Catholic League, Hagee wrote:
I want to express my deep regret for any comments that Catholics have found hurtful. After engaging in constructive dialogue with Catholic friends and leaders, I now have an improved understanding of the Catholic Church, its relation to the Jewish faith, and the history of anti-Catholicism.
AIM also has video of selected remarks by Hagee and Lieberman. In it, Hagee also says:
For several months, we found ourselves in the middle of a vicious national media firestorm. They say the first casulty of war is truth. What is true in a shooting war is also true in a media war.
It is simply surreal to experience turning on the television and her angry talking heads condemn you for saying things you never said. ... It is deeply troubling to pick up a newspaper and read sweeping condemnations of things you did in fact say but which are not new or controversial to those who believe in an all-powerful God who is sovereign and intervenes in human history.
Mark Twain said, and I quote, "The man who does not read a newspaper is uninformed, and the man who does read a newspaper is misinformed." That ought to be in the Bible somewhere.
Is Hagee now un-retracting his retractions and standing by his attacks on Catholics and gays once again? It appears so. Why didn't Stotts notice that?
Perhaps because she was too busy trying to decouple Hagee from McCain, even though prominent McCain supporter Joe Lieberman was a featured speaker at Hagee's CUFI event. Stotts complained that Lieberman's CUFI remarks were reported "as those of a close McCain confidant, even though the speech was advertised as independent from the McCain campaign." Would Stotts let Obama get away with Barack Obama, for instance, claiming that a close adviser who, say, spoke at an event that also featured Rev. Jeremiah Wright was acting "independent" from him? We suspect not.
Stotts further complained that "Many columns deliberately connect Pastor Hagee to the McCain campaign" without noting that McCain's campaign specifically sought Hagee's endorsement.
CNS Article on Media Bias Omits Author's Bias Topic: CNSNews.com
An Aug. 1 CNSNews.com article by Julie Stahl highlights a "recent study" of Israeli media finding that "Israel’s own media coverage of the U.S.-backed Israeli-Palestinian peace process over the years has been biased toward the liberal school of thought." But the article never honestly admits the apparent bias of the study's author, Avraham Gur, instead presenting only his academic credentials.
Gur appears to be a conservative; he has written twoarticles for the Israeli journal Nativ, published by the right-leaning Ariel Center for Public Policy Research. Stahl's labeling bias is another clue: While Ehud Barak is described as "leftwing," neither Benjamin Netanyahu nor his Likud party are labeled as right-wing.
Stahl also states that "the so-called 'peace camp' or peace process is generally identified with the leftwing or liberals in Israel," but that "[s]ome Israelis oppose the idea of Israel giving up land to the Palestinians and creating a Palestinian state, a tangible, in exchange for peace, an intangible." Stahl thus implies that the "some" who oppose the peace process are right-wing -- in fact, it's true -- but she did not put an ideological label on them as the did the peace process supporters.
And there's also this curious paragraph about Gur's findings:
On Israel’s public television station, out of 2,717 participants in broadcasts, 1,348 to 3,228 minutes of broadcast time were from the leftwing; 871 to 1,667 minutes of broadcast time from the rightwing; and 498 to 696 minutes of broadcast time were considered non-political.
Why is there a range? Was it not clear whether a participant forwarded a specific political view? If the person's ideology was not clear, shouldn't that have been excluded from the numbers?
Further, Gur is apparently the only person Stahl interviewed for this story. Given that CNS' almost exclusively American audience knows little about the machinations of Israeli politics and even less about Israeli media, more information and analysis from others are needed to put Gur's study (to which CNS provides no link) in a realistic perspective as an apparently partisan document.
Farah Lies About Obama's Energy Policy Topic: WorldNetDaily
A July 30 WorldNetDaily article falsely potrays Barack Obama's energy policy as just properly inflating tires and having the car tuned up:
"There are things you can do individually, though, to save energy," Obama said. "Making sure your tires are properly inflated – simple thing. But we could save all the oil that they're talking about getting off drilling – if everybody was just inflating their tires? And getting regular tune-ups? You'd actually save just as much!"
That's his energy plan? Inflate your tires? Get more tune-ups?
WND Editor Joseph Farah, organizer of a campaign to step up the pressure on Congress to drop its moratorium on offshore drilling and reverse its decisions to ban exploration for oil in Alaska's ANWR reserves before adjournment at the end of September, says Obama's apparent naiveté illustrates why the country has no time to waste.
"My goodness, it's time to educate America's so-called leaders about the law of supply and demand," he says. "I don't care if they really understand it. But let's make sure Congress acts before it's too late. Energy prices are robbing our country of jobs, seriously hurting real Americans' ability to make ends meet, driving up prices for every other product and service imaginable. This is no time to be talking about tire pressure. Let's put some pressure on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid."
In featuring only that statement and a video of Obama making only that statement, Farah fails to mention that in that same speech, Obama made numerous other proposals. And Obama also has a detailed energy plan on his website.
Hal Lindsey: Obama Preparing World for Antichrist Topic: WorldNetDaily
Here's a thick slice of Obama Derangement Syndrome courtesy of Hal Lindsey in his Aug. 1 WorldNetDaily column:
America has never faced so many different crises at the same time in living memory. The war with al-Qaida and Islamic terror, the Iran crisis, Afghanistan, nuclear proliferation, the rising price of oil, the falling dollar, enemy acronyms like OPEC, NAM, OIC, U.N. ... Obama is correct in saying that the world is ready for someone like him – a messiah-like figure, charismatic and glib and seemingly holding all the answers to all the world's questions.
And the Bible says that such a leader will soon make his appearance on the scene. It won't be Barack Obama, but Obama's world tour provided a foretaste of the reception he can expect to receive.
He will probably also stand in some European capital, addressing the people of the world and telling them that he is the one that they have been waiting for. And he can expect as wildly enthusiastic a greeting as Obama got in Berlin.
The Bible calls that leader the Antichrist. And it seems apparent that the world is now ready to make his acquaintance.
WND's Erik Rush Repeats False Obama Claim Topic: WorldNetDaily
A July 31 WorldNetDaily column by Erik Rush repeats the false claim that the Global Poverty Act, a Senate bill sponsored by Barack Obama, is an "$845 billion planet-wide welfare program" that is "a proposed massive money grab being sold on the basis of false compassion and unwarranted guilt."
In fact, as we've repeatedlynoted, the bill has no funding mechanism, doesn't commit the U.S. to a targeted level of spending, and doesn't give the United Nations the power to impose a tax on the U.S.
Another Attack on Planned Parenthood from CNS' Starr Topic: CNSNews.com
We've previously documented the efforts of CNSNews.com -- largely by reporter Penny Starr -- to attack Planned Parenthood, usually without fairly presenting their side of the story. Starr tries it again in a July 31 article, purporting to be alarmed by "[a] new Web site launched by the Columbia/Willamette (Ore.) Planned Parenthood affiliate" that "uses a series of video vignettes designed to 'teach' teens about avoiding sexually transmitted diseases, but the videos include two boys purportedly engaging in oral sex, advice to two teens in bed about getting tested after having intercourse and instructions on how to use a condom."
Starr begins her slant right away, engaging in typical CNS labeling bias by describing the American Life League, whose spokesman she quotes attacking the site, as "the pro-life, pro-family." Starr fails to more accurately note that ALL is anti-abortion and anti-contraception.
Indeed, Starr's apparent inspiration for this story is an ALL video attacking the Planned Parenthood group's website. It begins by declaring, "We all know how disgusting Planned Parenthood is," going on to call the website "garbage" and Planned Parenthood itself "vile."
Starr then moves on to Wendy Wright from Concerned Women for America -- unlabeled as a conservative group -- also attacking the site. Later, Starr quotes Katie Collins of the Clare Booth Luce Policy Institute (this one properly labeled as "a conservative women’s advocacy group") making the baseless accusation that "the Web site seems to be aimed at 'tweens' or even younger."
It's not until the 11th paragraph that Starr gets around to quoting someone from the Planned Parenthood chapter defending the website, but Starr does not allow her to respond to Collins' unsubstantiated claim that the site is targeted at "tweens."
While it may be a first for Starr that she includes an actual Planned Parenthood response in one of her attack articles, it's still slanted since Starr rounded up three conservatives -- only one properly labeled as such -- to aid her attack against the lone PP rep.
WND Misleads on Obama, Reparations Topic: WorldNetDaily
A July 30 WorldNetDaily article claims the following regarding a speech by Barack Obama to "UNITY '08, an event for journalists who claim membership in various minorities":
"I consistently believe that when it comes to whether it's Native Americans or African-American issues or reparations, the most important thing for the U.S. government to do is not just offer words, but offer deeds," he said.
The issue of reparations to African-Americans for the historic slave trade or Native Americans for the "invasion" by Europeans periodically has been raised. Several years ago a lawsuit was filed claiming damages for labor at a current value of $1.4 trillion.
This was followed by baseless speculation from pair of right-wing columnists (though not identified as such): One asked, "Is 'serious investments' code for 'reparations'? And how expensive and devastating would Obama's income redistribution policy be?" while the other even more baselessly speculated that Obama "even include reparations for al-Qaida soldiers, since, after all, they've been held in violation of their 'rights.'"
Curiously missing from the article was an account of Obama's full remarks in context, which made clear what he meant by "reparations":
QUESTION: When it comes to reparations, would you take it a step further, in terms of apologizing for slavery or offering reparations to various groups?
OBAMA: You know, I have said in the past, and I'll repeat again, that the best reparations we can provide are good schools in the inner city and jobs for people who are unemployed. And I think that strategies that invest in lifting people out of the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow, but that have broad applicability and allow us to build coalitions to actually get these things done, that, I think, is the best strategy.
WND's poll of the day misleads further by asking, "What do you think about Obama's promotion of 'reparations' to blacks and Native Americans?" despite the fact that "promotion" is not what he did. Did WND readers leave any more death threats against Obama in the comments? We're looking.
WND is already spreadinglies about Obama, so distorting his words is just child's play to Joseph Farah and crew. They clearly don't care that they're taking a sledgehammer to what little journalistic integrity WND has -- their hatred of Obama is just too strong for them to be concerned about things like truth.
The survival of the free-falling Free World notwithstanding, I relish the prospect of an Obama presidency. He'd be an apt leader for the Freefall World and all the dark comedy that brings with it (no racist pun intended!). Perhaps only when this country hits rock bottom, or as I call it, Barack Bottom, will we release ourselves from our PC prison and the Stockholm Syndrome it brings.
Will Newsmax Update False Obama Prayer Story? Topic: Newsmax
A July 29 Newsmax article by Jim Meyers repeated claims from the Ma'ariv newspaper in Israel that its publication of Barack Obama's prayer left at the Western Wall "was approved ahead of time by the Obama campaign." Meyers also cited the questionable Israel Insider to support his claim.
But as we've detailed, the New Republic reported later on July 29 that not only has no tangible evidence surfaced to support the claim, a Ma'ariv spokesman now says the accustion is "completely false."
Will Meyers update his readers on the apparently false claims in his original article? We shall see.
Graham Finally Reports Debunking of Obama Prayer Story, Blames Obama Anyway Topic: NewsBusters
Apparently, if James Taranto doesn't write about it, Tim Graham doesn't know about it.
We previously noted that Graham wrote about a claim plucked from Taranto's Wall Street Journal column that Barack Obama "authorized" the release of the prayer he left at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, as an Israeli newspaper had claimed -- without bothering to note that several hours before Graham posted his item at NewsBusters, The New Republic was reporting that the paper, Ma'ariv, was now denying it.
Now, more than a day after his original post, Graham finally reports this, citing Taranto once again. Graham sniffed: "Clearly, as a liberal Democratic magazine, the New Republic has its own suspicions about how its hero Obama must be getting railroaded." But Graham also cited a report in Israel Insider without noting that publication's political leaning; in fact, Taranto himself called it "an anti-Obama site" (which we've detailed).
Even though Obama has essentially been vindicated, Graham still finds a way to blame him for all of this:
The candidate himself should be questioned about this on TV to put an end to the "coy" refusals to confirm or deny. It's not that there's anything offensive in the prayer to deny. It's a perfectly good prayer, a credit to whoever prays it -- as long as it's a prayer and not a campaign ploy.
Of course, it's a "campaign ploy" for Graham and Taranto to keep raising questions about this, even as they head into conspiracy-theory territory by doing so. That's where Israel Insider is headed with it; as Taranto noted (but Graham didn't), Israel Insider "has video that it interprets as showing 'that the alleged pilferer' of Obama's prayer note, 'dressed in the garb of a seminary student, may in fact have been a member of Obama's entourage.'"