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A friend of mine with whom I have had several gun control discussions recently (she is anti-gun control, for reasons having to do with her personal history) sent me a video titled "Obama to Top Brass: Will you fire on American Citizens?" warning that President Obama has a "litmus test" which he is applying to prepare the military to fire on American civilians.  She asked my opinion.

If anybody else runs across this, perhaps this takedown that I replied with will be useful.

OK, let's take this apart.  We have one guy, a Jim Garrow, relaying hot-button information from an anonymous source.

First things first, who's Jim Garrow?  I am made suspicious by how much time and effort he spends to establish his credentials -- not a habit of people who actually have credentials.   It took a while to run him down since the first two and a half pages of Google results are all about this story, but finally there's this:

His biography is littered with contradictions.  His title of "Doctor" is an honorary degree in theology  from an unaccredited school.  (  vs.  He claims he completed the coursework but that the degree was honorary -- huh?

The interviewer makes a big deal of the assertion that he was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.  Whoopee.  Any college professor could submit a nomination for their cat for the NPP and it would be a valid nomination.  (  [Actually, that'd be pretty cool. :D ]  In addition, nominations are held in secret, so the claim is pretty safe to make.

The Pre-Bethune businesses he tried to run were uniformly shady.  The censored internet service he tried to start never actually delivered any service, to the financial loss of other investors, and when a newspaper published an article about it he sued the newspaper.  His teaching certificate was suspended and he was fined for his behavior toward his students.  He started a flight school and didn't bother to register or insure the airplane, which is kind of an entertaining story to read about 'cause it gets better, but you get the idea.

The Pink Pagoda operation, while it sounds really, really wonderful in ideal terms also has its share of contradictions.  He puts up information on his website about an alliance with a Chinese lawyer who, when contacted, says he never heard of Garrow.  He claims to never have requested charitable contributions but his website included until recently a section reading "Should you choose to donate, please use our PayPal donation button" which he now claims was for the purchase of merchandise.  He cites his reputation in China as being recognized and appreciated by people walking by on the street, yet says he's not surprised people there don't know of his work because he tries to keep a low profile.  There are ethical questions raised by his work which I didn't bother to delve into at this point.

All right.  So this flim-flam artist -- excuse me, this patriotic paragon -- a Canadian, mind you -- is picked to be approached by some superpatriot, a "legend in the U.S. military", to reveal a horrible antipatriotic secret that just randomly happens to hit the hottest of hot buttons in the public mind today.  He claims a widespread "purge" of the military based on this "litmus test."  If this is true, why aren't there dozens, hundreds, thousands of displaced military personnel all telling the same story?  A handful.  Two, even.  Give me two.

If the source is identified, we'll look at the source, but for right now it's bogus.  Mr. Garrow is looking for his fifteen minutes of fame.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (3+ / 0-)

    Let us discard all this quibbling about this man or the other man, this race or that race... Let us unite as one people declaring that all men are created equal... A. Lincoln

    by ThatTallGuy on Thu Jan 24, 2013 at 03:30:29 PM PST

  •  Embedded without comment: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Glen The Plumber

  •  Since Obama has already assinated (0+ / 0-)

    US citizens (to the general approval of DailyKossers), that sounds like a perfectly reasonable litmus test to me . ..

  •  You might want to take a closer look at (4+ / 0-)

    the interviewer, Gary Franchi. This is twenty minutes I want back. This is the extreme edge of Paulbottery.

    •  Hell... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CA wildwoman

      ....even I didn't watch as much as half of it.  You are a glutton for punishment.

      Let us discard all this quibbling about this man or the other man, this race or that race... Let us unite as one people declaring that all men are created equal... A. Lincoln

      by ThatTallGuy on Thu Jan 24, 2013 at 06:27:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I learned the hard way (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ThatTallGuy, CA wildwoman

        not to post any video that I have not watched in its entirety. I posted a version of "Taps" once that ended with a homophobic rant in the last few seconds. I managed to post an abject apology ahead of the donuts and avoided them.

        In this case I was perplexed by the softball tone of the interview, the lack of web presence of the TV station, and finally the character of the interviewer. Yech.

        •  I can understand the issue, and that's a good tip. (0+ / 0-)

          But others I trust not to screw me over had watched it in its entirety and vouched for its content.  I only needed to watch enough to draw out the pertinent bits.

          Let us discard all this quibbling about this man or the other man, this race or that race... Let us unite as one people declaring that all men are created equal... A. Lincoln

          by ThatTallGuy on Thu Jan 24, 2013 at 09:11:46 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Correct, but it's been more than 15 minutes (0+ / 0-)

    Fortunately, someone else has already done the research on Jim Garrow's fabrications:

    ""Dr." Garrow is not credible. He has a long history of making exaggerated and suspect claims and abusing those who question them. For example, from an official site of the Ontario College of Teachers:

    Member: James Edward Garrow
    Decision: 9-month Suspension, Reprimand and $3,000 Fine
    Registration Number: 366779

    A panel of the Discipline Committee held a public hearing over six sessions from July 2001 to February 2002 into allegations of professional misconduct against James Edward Garrow of Guelph. Garrow, 52, was certified to teach in 1976 and was employed as a teacher by the Upper Canada District School Board. Garrow represented himself at the hearing.

    The allegations of professional misconduct against Garrow included failing to maintain the standards of the profession and abusing students physically, sexually, verbally, psychologically or emotionally.

    Students testified at the hearing that Garrow made disparaging or derogatory remarks about them. The panel also heard testimony that Garrow abandoned his employment with the Upper Canada District School Board in early June of 1999 and failed to resume his employment despite letters, telephone calls and faxed communications from the board. The board dismissed Garrow for breaching his professional duties in July 1999.

    The panel found that Garrow tried to rationalize abandoning his position, and that he showed a lack of remorse for his actions. His testimony was at times contradictory, inflammatory and irrelevant to the matters at issue, in contrast to the testimony from witnesses.

    The panel found Garrow guilty of professional misconduct and ordered his Certificates of Registration and Qualification suspended for nine months. The panel reprimanded Garrow immediately following the hearing and also imposed a fine of $3,000 to be paid to the Minister of Finance within six months of the panel’s decision. The decision of the panel appears on the College’s public register.

    The following was posted by his former landlord, a doctor who rented his house to Garrow near Guelph:

    I can regale you for hours with my involvement with Garrow who was once a tenant in my house outside of Guelph. He is the REAL thing -- a true sociopath con artist. I have just now started to reinvestigate by googling him and finding myself here. I am now concerned that he is more than a danger as between private individuals such as landlords and investors, but is now actually involved in something as serious as child smuggling. His ego and arrogance know no bounds. I sincerely hope that the RCMP and the Government of Ontario investigate and put him out of business and behind bars.

    Andrew Brick, MD formerly of Guelph Ontario and currently of Tucson AZ

    7/14/2011 10:11 PM"

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