McCain 2008 lawyer is the culprit in Wikipedia Lakin deletion
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|Response from Ted Frank (12/3/2010): He insists that he didn't delete the entry on LTC Lakin, and asserts that his contribution to the discussion referred to existing Wikipedia policy and was not what caused the article to be re-directed. It is unclear why someone would join in a deletion discussion if his participation made no difference in the outcome. Frank says he did not advise the McCain campaign on the birth-certificate question but does volunteer that "there were countless people who worked for the McCain campaign doing "opposition research" on questions such as that-- including one who is now one of Sarah Palin's chief advisors.|
Columnist Diana West (Washington Examiner/November 24) exposed the warp speed deletion of an entry about Army LTC Terry Lakin, in the online encyclopedia, Wikipedia. This is a link to LTC Lakin entry before it disappeared down what West described aptly as the memory hole:
LTC Lakin defied military orders eight months ago in an attempt to seek the truth about whether Barack Obama is Constitutionally eligible to serve as Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces under requirements of Article II, Section 1, as a "natural born citizen." LTC Lakin, with six overseas tours, including year long tours to Honduras, Bosnia and Afghanistan, was to deploy to Afghanistan again under Obama's pronounced "surge" policy, and faces court-martial at Fort Meade, Maryland on December 14.
The Wiki entry on LTC Lakin was removed in record time- an hour and 11 minutes after being flagged for deletion. The culprit in the Wiki deletion was ID'd by a Wiki user as Washington, D.C. lawyer, Theodore Frank, who worked on the McCain campaign in 2008. The Wiki deletion was recommended for extirpation by someone with user name, THF. Up until now, the focus has been largely on the Obama Administration for its role in concealing all of the President's citizenship-related records (and for misrepresenting the Obama online Certification of Live Birth as an original birth certificate)- but Frank's involvement is a new twist and shifts the eligibility spotlight to Obama's 2008 rival campaign.
THF is the initials of Theodore "Ted" Frank-- founder and president of the Center for Class Action Fairness. It's already been claimed on many websites that activists in the Wiki community believe Wiki user THF was Ted Frank. Frank's past activity indicates someone unconcerned about being recognized for his blogging activity. A quick examination of articles mentioning Frank shows that he's been active on Wikipedia, including battles with Michael Moore. These items indicate that Frank changed his Wiki username to THF: Wikipedia at one time labeled Michael Moore's web site as an attack site, deleted references to it, and went out of its way to protect and support Ted Frank (Wikipedia user THF), including suggestions that he was "outed" even though he originally called himself TedFrank on Wikipedia, only recently changed it to THF, and is a public figure with a Wikipedia article written about him."
Ted Frank has a fine resume-- from PointofLaw.com, he is described as an Adjunct Fellow with the Center for Legal Policy at the Manhattan Institute. Frank has written for law reviews, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and The American Spectator and testified before Congress multiple times on legal issues. He also writes for the legal blog Overlawyered.com and serves on the Executive Committee of the Federalist Society Litigation Practice Group. In 2008, Mr. Frank was elected to membership in the American Law Institute. Previously, Mr. Frank clerked for the Honorable Frank H. Easterbrook on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, was a litigator for ten years, served as the first director of the AEI Legal Center for the Public Interest. Mr. Frank graduated from the University of Chicago Law School with high honors and of course, worked on the McCain-Palin campaign.
Frank was one of three lawyers who vetted Governor Palin before she was selected to run for Vice President on the McCain ticket. Did he have other vetting responsibilities on the McCain campaign? In particular, who on the campaign legal staff was responsible for vetting the online Certification of Live Birth that the Obama camp provided to Daily Kos and FactCheck.org- which falsely proclaimed it to be a birth certificate (and notably this online Certification of Live Birth was missing any Hawiian hospital name or attending physician's signature)? A laser-printed, computer-generated document is clearly NOT an original birth record, but the McCain campaign seemed confused over this key point. As McCain General Counsel Trevor Pottter publicly stated about Obama's birth rumors:
"To the extent that we could, we looked into the substantive side of these allegations," said Potter. "We never saw any evidence that then-Senator Obama had been born outside of the United States. We saw rumors, but nothing that could be sourced to evidence. There were no statements and no documents that suggested he was born somewhere else. On the other side, there was proof that he was born in Hawaii. There was a certificate issued by the state's Department of Health, and the responsible official in the state saying that he had personally seen the original certificate. There was a birth announcement in the Honolulu Advertiser, which would be very difficult to invent or plant 47 years in advance." (Obamatrueandfalse.com-- David Weigel 7/24/09- "McCain Campaign investigated, dismissed Obama citizenship rumors")
When I questioned Frank about the Wiki deletion, he volunteered that he participated in a discussion about the second recreation of the article. He explained further that the rule of thumb is that Wikipedia doesn't have articles about living people just because they're in the news for one event. A second rule of thumb is that if there is consensus that an article should be deleted, the recreation of the article should also be deleted. He claims that he merely stated his agreement with those two rules in application to that particular case and that "the result would have been the same no matter what I said; I wasn't the one who flagged the article." But then he commented further, "As for Lakin himself, there's lot to complain about when it comes to Obama--why waste resources counterproductively rehashing a discredited theory about constitutional eligibility?" And this is the rub (aside from the fact that a Wiki blogger claims THF is the user who actually deleted and redirected the entry 71 mins after another user had nominated it for deletion)- given paternal step-grandmother Sarah Obama declaring Obama was born in Kenya- and in March, a Kenyan Cabinet Minister affirming Obama's birth in Kenya- shouldn't Frank and others be aware that the "born in Kenya" premise is gaining traction and that their earlier comments were appallingly ill-informed?
Who advised Potter falsely that there is proof that Obama was born in Hawaii? Besides confusing terms (Certification v. certificate) Potter doesn't appear to understand that the two birth announcements (he mentions only one) were automatically prompted by the filing of the 1961 Obama birth record- which remains CONCEALED-- at Obama's directive. Hawaii Governor Lingle never examined that original filing herself-- relying entirely upon Health Director Chiyome Fukino whose initial comments on the Obama birth record were bureaucratically obtuse and guarded. Given Hawaiian standards, the Obama 1961 birth filing may be something as non-substantive and non-probative as one parental statement-- missing a hospital name or doctor's signature. Did Potter not know that two different Hawaiian hospital names were released to the press?- but neither will claim to be Obama's birthplace? Who on the McCain campaign made these sophomoric mistakes?
How was it that McCain unfairly became the subject of a Senate hearing, was hounded by the media (the original "birthers") and felt compelled to produce his original birth certificate to prove he was "natural born"-- but never asked his rival to do the same? Did Frank and others miss what may prove to be the greatest political scandal in American history? With a decorated Army officer imminently facing jail at Fort Leavenworth- and denied the right to evidence to defend himself by the Army-- it's past time that key operatives during the 2008 presidential campaign were forced to explain their actions and at all costs, to avoid being accused of being part of the cover-up.
The Constitution matters-- so does the truth.
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