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Thread: Kenyan Ambassador says Barack Obama born in Africa - ineligible to take office?

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    Elite Member AgentOrange's Avatar
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    Default Kenyan Ambassador says Barack Obama born in Africa - ineligible to take office?

    Kenyan Ambassador Peter N.R.O. Ogego commented on an American radio show that Barack Obama's Kenyan birthplace was a tourist attraction. Naturally this has caused something of an international brouhaha, and the Kenyan government has had to weight in. Here's the story -

    [YOUTUBE]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XqOLREmCJOo[/YOUTUBE]

    Embassy: Obama not born in Kenya


    By Chelsea Schilling
    © 2008 WorldNetDaily


    Ambassador Peter Ogego
    A radio interview with Kenyan Ambassador Peter N.R.O. Ogego has been widely publicized since the ambassador called President-elect Barack Obama's Kenyan birthplace a "well-known" attraction – but the embassy is now telling WND the hosts misunderstood his comments.

    On Nov. 6, only two days after the election, Detroit radio talk-show hosts Mike Clark, Trudi Daniels and Marc Fellhauer on WRIF's "Mike In The Morning" called the Embassy of Kenya in Washington, D.C., to speak with Ambassador Ogego.
    Hear the Kenyan ambassador's interview with WRIF radio

    The radio hosts were surprised when their light-hearted interview with Ogego reignited suspicions that Obama may have been born in Kenya.

    An assistant to the ambassador, referring to herself only as "Trudy," confirmed today that Ogego had indeed participated in the radio interview. But she said the show made leading statements and took the following comments out of context.



    Clark: "We want to congratulate you on Barack Obama, our new president, and you must be very proud."

    Ogego: "We are. We are. We are also proud of the U.S. for having made history as well."

    Fellhauer: "One more quick question, President-elect Obama's birthplace over in Kenya, is that going to be a national spot to go visit, where he was born?"

    Ogego: "It's already an attraction. His paternal grandmother is still alive."

    Fellhauer: "His birthplace, they'll put up a marker there?"

    Ogego: "It would depend on the government. It's already well known."

    Ogego's assistant insisted he was speaking about Barack Obama Sr., and not President-elect Obama.

    WND asked, "Is Obama's birthplace in Kenya?"

    The woman replied firmly, "No."

    She said she could not say why Ogego responded the way he did, and she promised to have the ambassador call and explain his own comments. The ambassador never returned requests for comment.

    Clark told WND he began researching stories about Obama's birth before his call.

    "For two weeks prior to the election, I had been reading on the air about this business of Obama needing to be disqualified because he is not a legal U.S. citizen and that he was born in Kenya and moved to Hawaii where he never properly naturalized," he said. "I always assumed if there was any truth in any of this, hillary would have found out and taken care of this issue a long time ago."

    Clark continued, "Given the fact that I had read so much of this on the air, it was a natural question to play around a little bit and suggest as a joke that Obama was born in Kenya."

    He said the embassy's recent claims that the ambassador was speaking about Barack Obama Sr. don't add up.

    "If you listen to the call in its entirety, you will find it was very obvious we were all talking about President-elect Barack Obama and not his father," Clark said. "So, the idea that he thought we were talking about his father seems a little far fetched to me."

    Clark said Ogego's statement that Obama's Kenyan birthplace was already an attraction caught them offguard.

    "The point is, we expected him to say, 'No. Obama was not born in Kenya, but there is an attraction to honor his father.' I would of thought that would of been the answer if anything," he said.

    (Story continues below)






    The issue of Obama's place of birth has been heating up since WND senior reporter Jerome Corsi traveled to Kenya and Hawaii prior to the election to investigate issues surrounding Obama's birth. But his research and discoveries only raised more questions.

    The Hawaii governor claimed to have a valid certificate on file, but he rejected requests for access and left ambiguous its origin: Does the document at its Department of Health indicate a Hawaii birth or was it generated after the Obama family registered a Kenyan birth in Hawaii?

    Obama's half-sister, Maya Soetoro, has named two different Hawaii hospitals where Obama could have been born – but a video posted on YouTube features Obama's Kenyan grandmother, Sarah, saying she witnessed Obama's birth in Kenya.

    Meanwhile, as many as 17 lawsuits have been springing up across the nation as citizens ask the president-elect to produce the document to show that he is eligible for office.

    The Obama campaign has called lawsuits questioning Obama's natural-born citizenship "garbage."

    When WND asked a campaign spokeswoman why Obama simply hasn't released the original 1961 certificate of live birth to make the lawsuits go away, she replied, "I have no idea. I think they released what they chose to release, and Hawaii has confirmed that he was born in Hawaii, so I don't know what else you want."

    Now, an online petition designed to enlist the public's help in demanding evidence of Barack Obama's constitutional eligibility for the office of the presidency has reached more than 90,000 signatures.

    WFIR claims its embassy call has been receiving "a ton of attention" as well. Its website features more than 220 posts on the subject, including the following:

    This was the best! That guy said they're planning on building a monument or something in the place of Obamessiah's birth! IN KENYA! Imagine when the opposition to the obamaniacs really takes hold and they dig up the truth on this. Constitutional crisis … R.I.P. United States of America
    The thing is, there is so much info about him being born in Kenya already that you have to wonder why McCain didn't jump on that bandwagon and run with it. … Maybe they all want him there.
    If what the ambassador said is true then Obama has no right to be president and the election is null and void period!
    These disc jockeys were rude and obnoxious. Clearly, people of limited skills in comedy. But they were able get the ambassador to state that Obama was born in Kenya. If these idiots had any clue as to how handle this subject, they could have followed it up with more incriminating questioning. Oh, well. ... Also, don't get too excited, I've done business in Africa and with a few dollars, you get anyone to say whatever you want and destroy whatever documents you want destroyed, thus covering up any of Obama's possible footprints.
    I think that Obama needs to lay it all out for all to see. Once he proves his natural born status all can forget this thing and we can draw together behind Obama and stop all this. ... I think we are in for a constitutional crisis that may well wipe us out before it is settled. It is not worth the possible outcome to keep this thing going. Obama lay your records out for all to see so we can avoid this crisis and 4 to 8 years of fighting about it.
    The only resolution to this issue is for Obama to release his documents. No matter what your political beliefs and affiliations, it is to your advantage to want Obama to release the documents and put the issue to rest. Support our Constitution. Demand transparency.
    A big deal if true, since according to the constitution a president must be native born. Therefore Obama would be ineligible to take office.
    Last edited by AgentOrange; November 26th, 2008 at 10:37 PM.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    I might give this guy some credibility if he hadn't waited until now to suddenly mention this. Kind of like Obama's half-brother saying that he was raised a Muslim, even though they didn't grow up together.

    The only way anybody could prove that Obama was born in Kenya would be to produce an authentic birth certificate saying that he was. So people can say he was born anywhere they want but unless they've got hard facts it's just b.s.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    He didn't even really say it. they kept saying birthplace and he jsut went along. I wish the wingnuts would stop beating this dead horse. It's boring to have to keep refuting it.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

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    Elite Member NicoleWasHere's Avatar
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    Barack Obama was born at the Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children in Honolulu, Hawaii, to Ann Dunham, a white American from Wichita, Kansas of mainly English, Irish and smaller amounts of German descent.

    Barack Obama - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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    Elite Member msdeb's Avatar
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    jeez it seems everyone wants their 15 minutes regarding Obama.
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    Elite Member NicoleWasHere's Avatar
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    I'm gonna go public and say I'm Obama's previously unknown, super-white sister, who's having a wild and nasty affair with his wife.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NicoleWasHere View Post
    I'm gonna go public and say I'm Obama's previously unknown, super-white sister, who's having a wild and nasty affair with his wife.
    Don't forget the part about how you were born in Kenya and raised by Muslim terrorists, otherwise nobody will believe you.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    worldnetdailyforretards strikes again...

    guys, this isnt a legitimate news source..
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    A*O
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    Hawaii, that's in Africa, right?
    If all the women in this place were laid end to end, I wouldn’t be surprised - Dorothy Parker

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    Elite Member NicoleWasHere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    Hawaii, that's in Africa, right?
    It's an overseas place. You know. Like Canada.


    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    Don't forget the part about how you were born in Kenya and raised by Muslim terrorists, otherwise nobody will believe you.
    But how can I be a Muslim terrorist if I'm already a socialist communist, who was born in North Korea, and raised by Chinese-French immigrants?!!??

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    No Nicole, I'M the socialist communist pinko lefty born a love child produced from the mixed sperm of Ho Chi Minh, Mao, Che and Castro. Pol Pot tried to get in there but he lost the sword fight. Oh, and I trained a terrorist in Afghanistan. Reagan's CIA trained me.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

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    Elite Member NicoleWasHere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by buttmunch View Post
    No Nicole, I'M the socialist communist pinko lefty born a love child produced from the mixed sperm of Ho Chi Minh, Mao, Che and Castro. Pol Pot tried to get in there but he lost the sword fight. Oh, and I trained a terrorist in Afghanistan. Reagan's CIA trained me.

    Well shit, then we must be related!

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Separated at birth, baby!
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NicoleWasHere View Post

    But how can I be a Muslim terrorist if I'm already a socialist communist, who was born in North Korea, and raised by Chinese-French immigrants?!!??
    You're a multi-tasker.

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    Bad Science: How Not To Do Image Analysis Part II

    Tuesday, November 25. 2008

    Understanding image analysis is very important. Otherwise, you cannot tell fact from fiction. Equally important is the need to understand how not to do image analysis. Otherwise charlatans may try to pull a fast one over you.

    In my previous blog entry, "Bad Science: How Not To Do Image Analysis", I debunked the work of an anonymous troll who called himself "TechDude". TechDude used a sample biased, false data, and artifacts created by his own tools to conclude that the Obama certificate of live birth (COLB) was fake. TechDude also used false credentials (he impersonated another person) in order to sound authoritative. Following my public critique of his report and outing of the impersonation, TechDude vanished. Even his strongest supporter, "Texas Darlin", pulled all of TechDude's reports from her blog. TechDude was a fraud and used bad science to support a false conspiracy.

    Today, there is only one person who continues to propagate the "COLB is fake" conspiracy. He calls himself "Ron Polarik" (an anonymous pseudonym -- not his real name), and he also uses bad science to support his claims. His latest report, Polarik's final report: Obama's 'Born' Conspiracy is accompanied by a YouTube video. (Since he keeps restricting access to it and moving it around, I am making a copy available here.)

    Moot Point


    Before I begin evaluating Polarik's claims, I would like to point out that the entire claim -- that Obama was not born in Hawaii -- is false. Representatives from the State of Hawaii have repeatedly authenticated Obama's COLB.
    • 27-June-2008. Janice Okubo from the Hawaii Department of Health confirmed that the document was valid.
    • 15-Aug-2008. Politifact validated the information.
    • 31-Oct-2008 (alternate link). Quote: Health Department Director Dr. Chiyome Fukino said today she and the registrar of vital statistics, Alvin Onaka, have personally verified that the health department holds Obama's original birth certificate.
    Hawaii confirmed that Obama has a real birth certificate from Hawaii. Regardless of whether the document on the web is real or tampered, the argument is moot; an authentic document exists. Thus, the conspiracy has no basis.

    Now, given that Hawaii confirms it, why would they release a fake COLB when they could just as easily release a new one? (Occam's Razor: it is easier to just release the real one.)

    Polarik's Claims


    On Polarik's blog and video, he makes four key claims about the COLB.

    Claim #1: The Pixel Problem
    Polarik claims that a zoom-up of the letters contains off-color pixels that do not belong. For example, zooming in shows gray dots in the middle of the black letters. He claims that this means that the letters were replaced.


    There are actually many problems here.

    First, the highest copy quality of the COLB contains no instances of the word "BIRTH" that looks like this. Every instance has that green thatched background around the letters. In fact, the green thatched background is visible in every copy of the COLB. Thus, Polarik has tampered with the data in order to remove the green thatched background.

    Second, along with the missing green from outside the letters, Polarik claims that there should be a green thatched pattern within the letters ("O", "B", etc. have internal areas that should contain green). If you look at the child's name on the big image, you can clearly see the thatch in the letters "C", "O", "B", and "A". However, the green thatch is not as clear as the rest of the image. This happens because the image is at a very low quality: JPEG uses a lossy compression algorithm that drops off low contrast colors and preserves high contrast. The black text on light background is preserved, but the pale green thatch on light green paper blends together when combined with the high-contrast black lettering.

    Third, the loss of the green background when scanned is intentional. Security paper, such as the green thatched background, is designed to distort when scanned. That's a security measure. Thus, even if Polarik had not tampered with the image, removing the green from around the letters, the thatch background should not be crisp.

    Fourth, the colored pixels within the solid black lettering is fully expected from a scanned document. Scanners are not perfect. They introduce noise into the image. So let's do a scanner test...

    The biggest COLB online is 2550x3300 pixels. At 300dpi, that is 8.5"x11" (a full sheet of paper). I scanned in a portion of a Newsweek article at 300dpi. The portion that I selected contains text at various sizes and thicknesses. Looking at the paper version, it all looks uniform and black. However, the scanned image (full color, no enhancements, scanned on an HP Scanjet 3570c) shows that the black text contains a variety of colors.



    And zoomed in to 400%:


    The areas of text that should be all black are not uniformly black. Combining these "non-black" areas with the JPEG lossy compression (which uses 8x8 blocks) yields square patches that are different dark colors. These look like the exact same artifacts that Polarik claims indicate a forgery. Polarik is wrong -- they are nothing more than scanner artifacts.

    On Claim #1, Polarik has manipulated the data, forgot about the purpose of security paper, ignored the image quality, and incorrectly determined that scanner artifacts are signs of a forgery.

    Claim #2: Different Borders
    Polarik claims that the border looks different from other examples of Hawaii's birth certificate. In particular, he says that it looks blurry. We don't know the history of the actual image (was this a scan converted to JPEG, resaved as another JPEG, etc.). What we do know is that the image is at a very low quality, and JPEG loses fine details when saved at a low quality.

    In the video, Polarik continues to say that the blurriness is because one border was applied on top of another. (This is a fun argument because it is so stupid.) There are many ways to paste one item on top of another. The most common is "overwrite" -- the new border replaces the old one. Then comes "selection" -- imaging selecting the black thatched background and not selecting all of the middle parts -- that can be very hard with an image like this. When pasting one thatch onto another, you should see a consistent shadow or a herringbone pattern. Yet, neither is present. Finally, there is "merge". Merge could make it blurry, but would also introduce the shadow or herringbone pattern, which are not present.

    Polarik incorrectly concludes that the border was added to the image. However, I and other analysts have been unable to identify any sign of digital manipulation.

    Hawaii (and every other state) uses a variety of forgery deterrents and regularly change the deterrents. A very fine black-thatched border, like the light green thatched background, should not scan correctly. Depending on the scanner, it may appear blurred or bi-tonal or contain a different patterned than the one found on the paper. Thus, the dark, blurry background is more likely due to the security paper and not due to manipulation. (Some of the other scans of Hawaiian birth certificates appear bi-tonal -- a dark, wide thatch with a light gray thatch inside.) Then again, without a copy of the official document and a list of the various and ever-changing security methods employed by Hawaii, any visual analysis of "it looks wrong" is nothing more than speculation.

    Of course, borders could be added to a fake document, printed, and then scanned in and I would not be able to detect it. But that isn't what Polarik is claiming happened. He says that they were added to the digital image. That claim is not supported by the image compression level, color scheme, and other artifacts.

    On Claim #2, Polarik is both wrong, and not in a position to validate even if he were right.

    Claim #3: "The missing seal" and "The missing fold"
    Polarik claims that the online COLB is missing the official seal and folds.

    I don't know what to say here except "Polarik is wrong". He seems to not mind hyperfocusing on pixels in the text, but ignores the pixels that disprove his conclusion. This isn't just "selection bias", this is intentional ignorance.

    Here is a section of the large online document. I have only cropped the image -- no color enhancement and no scaling. The section comes from the lower middle of the page. The green thatched background normally appears without any other background. However, above the date stamp on the paper is a round area of horizontal lines that go through the green thatch. This is the official seal. If you mouse-over the image below, you will see an enhanced image: I applied an edge detection algorithm that shows the horizontal lines in white.



    Polarik says that you should be able to see the embossed pattern on the scanned image without image enhancement. The quality of the seal's appearance depends on the scanner and image quality. Remember: the seal is not a change in color; it is a change in texture that the scanner may not capture well. In this case, I see it above, but I use enhancement to make it easier to see.

    Polarik refuses to acknowledge the seal because admitting it exists would damage his claim.

    Polarik also claims that the second fold is missing. In this regard, I must admit that I do not see the second fold. However, I have scanned many pieces of folded paper and not seen folds (scanners pick up color, not texture). What I do see in the COLB is evidence suggesting a fold. Follow the right edge of the right border down the page. It has a slight lean inward, meaning it is crooked. At about a third of the way from the bottom, the border changes direction, bending outward. It changes direction where the second fold should be located. And since the green thatched pattern does not show any breaks or separations, it is very unlikely that this is a paste or splice.

    Claim #4: The Fact Check Forgery
    Polarik claims the border and seal do not match the form from 2007 or 2008. He forgot to mention that the bottom corner says "11/01" meaning it is the 2001 form, and not either 2007 or 2008.

    There is a difference between "real" and "authentic". Digital image analysis can tell if an image has been manipulated, but not if the original source was authentic. In fact, any analysis based strictly on the online image cannot be used to validate the authenticity of the border.

    The only one who can say whether the border and document are authentic is the state of Hawaii. And Hawaii has been saying that the accusation of a false COLB is "pretty ridiculous." As far back as 15-Aug-2008, they have said that the COLB image is "a valid Hawaii state birth certificate". Since Polarik has never claimed to be an expert in Hawaiian birth certificates, I'm going to have to go with the State's opinion here and conclude that Polarik is wrong.

    Polarik's Changing Background


    So none of Polarik's claims hold up to inspection. What about Polarik's credentials? I mean, TechDude had some really impressive credentials... until it was discovered that he was a fraud and claiming credentials that he didn't have.

    Polarik continually says that the name "Ron Polarik" is not his real name. It is a pseudonym. He says he fears threats from Obama supporters. This claim reminds me of Ashley Todd -- the campaign worker who claimed to have been beaten up by an Obama supporter, but that turned out to be a hoax.

    My real name is Neal Krawetz and I stand behind my analysis. Polarik, on the other hand, stands behind anonymity.

    Trolls frequently add to their backgrounds in order to sound more impressive. As expected, Polarik has altered his background credentials. Four months ago, he described himself as:
    I've been working with computers, printers, and typewriters for over 20 years, and given a set of printed letters, I can discern what kind of device made them. Printer output is quite different from the text created by a graphics program, and even if a document looks "official," it may not be.
    In the recent video, he describes himself as:
    I'm Dr. Ron Polarik. I have a Ph.D. in Instructional Media. And my expertise is in computer graphics and the use of computer peripherals, such as printers and scanners, to input digital images into the computer. I've done a lot of work with reading web pages, where image size and image quality are very important. I'm fully qualified to spot inconsistencies and anomalies in images, especially digital images, given my expertise.
    So let's see...
    • "Dr. Ron Polarik". Many years ago I saw a comedy troupe called Duck's Breath Mystery Theater. They had a skit called "Ask Dr. Science". In the show, Dr. Science legally changed his first name to "Doctor" in order to give his theories more credibility. ("There is a thin line between ignorance and arrogance," he says, "and only I have managed to erase that line.")

      It seems that Ron Polarik has now tried the same thing -- he has now given himself a Ph.D. If he had this credential, then why did he not say so months ago? It would have given his bogus analysis the appearance of more credibility. Instead, it just came out of nowhere.
    • He says he has a Ph.D. in Instructional Media with an expertise in computer graphics. I'm curious which school. Most schools with "Instructional Media" courses offer doctorates in Education, but not in the specific niche of media (however, a few do). In addition, a degree in education or media is not the same as a degree in computer security or a certification in forensics or related experience.
    • He claims to do a lot of work with web pages where image size and image quality are very important. Uh, huh? Most web page designers care about speed-to-load. Most images found on the web are very low quality. While quality is important for an analyst, the quality is not very important to most people who use the web. And, by the way, Polarik never analyzed nor mentions the quality of the COLB image.
    • Wait... what are those credentials again? "input[ing] digital images into the computer" and "reading web pages". Does this sound like someone with real qualifications?
    • He claims to be "fully qualified" to spot inconsistencies in images, especially in digital images. This is really cool... since digital image forensics is a relatively new field with only a handful of experts in the nation... and Polarik isn't one of them.
    • For someone with a Ph.D., he makes very strong statements that I have never heard from someone with a Ph.D. "Indisputable evidence" and "without a doubt a forgery". Every Ph.D. that I know always holds back a little from making absolute statements, especially when the techniques are not 100% accurate.

      To date, no image analysis technique is 100% accurate -- that's why real forensic examiners use a variety of methods and algorithms. Polarik, on the other hand, has used nothing except overly zoomed pixels and a selective bias (he refuses to acknowledge that the seal is present).
    • And let us not forget the unprofessional behavior. Having a Ph.D. does not mean you know everything. However, every Ph.D. candidate has endured so much political bickering, that it becomes ingrained. If you thought the British were polite when they insult you, then you should really see academic professors go at it. "The battles are so fierce because the stakes are so small."

      In contrast, my site admin (the ever-talented Ms. Kim) banned Polarik from submitting comments to my site because he is outright rude an insulting. Some quotes from his banned comments:
      Y'know what I love about Lefties? How they posit nonsense in response to honest research. Better, still, how folks like yourself are content to simply blow smoke up my butt without any valid examples to prove their point.

      Neil, you are a hack and a phony. I wrote a rebuttal to your babbling, but it never was posted. Well, I guess that's one way to silence me and maintain your superiority complex in the process.

      Memo to Neil: you're not the Oracle of Delphi. You cannot just get by on your word alone.

      Neal, you still have not printed my challenges to you, which means that you picked a very appropriate name for your website. HackerFactor contains the stem "Hack" which is exactly what you are.

      Problem is, I called your bluff and you never posted it. What a wuss! I know everything there is to know about PCA, thanks to my Masters in Statistics, and I challenged you to answer basic questions about PCA output that you should have been able to answer if you knew your asterisk from your elbow about PCA.
      (As an aside, I find it interesting that he forgot to mention a "Masters in Statistics" in his video.)
      I admire the resume you posted on your site. It's so nicely padded, that I'd like to use it on my new memory foam bed.
      (As an aside, my resume is not posted on my site. I can only assume that he has misinterpreted my very short bio as a resume.)

      On other blogs, where he has not been banned, he is equally outright rude and insulting. These are not the insults of a Ph.D. These are the insults of a troll. Someone with a Ph.D. would do the insulting by discrediting the research, before addressing the person.
    Polarik's findings are not supported by the data. He has manipulated evidence, selectively ignored facts, and overlooked obvious findings. He has made over-reaching and gross assumptions, which vary from baseless to provable inaccurate. Moreover, he claims vague credentials that are unsupported by his work. I have serious doubts about Polarik having a Ph.D., but he sure has a lot of BS.
    Secure Computing: Sec-C
    "But I am very poorly today & very stupid & I hate everybody & everything." -- Charles Darwin

    "Trump is, in my opinion, the first woman president of the United States." -- Roseanne Barr

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