In a stunning development one day after the release of Where’s the Birth Certificate? The Case that Barack Obama is not Eligible to be President, by Dr. Jerome Corsi, World Net Daily Editor and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Farah has announced plans to recall and pulp the entire 200,000 first printing run of the book, as well as announcing an offer to refund the purchase price to anyone who has already bought either a hard copy or electronic download of the book.
In an exclusive interview, a reflective Farah, who wrote the book’s foreword and also published Corsi’s earlier best-selling work, Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak out Against John Kerry and Capricorn One: NASA, JFK, and the Great “Moon Landing” Cover-Up, said that after much serious reflection, he could not go forward with the project. “I believe with all my heart that Barack Obama is destroying this country, and I will continue to stand against his administration at every turn, but in light of recent events, this book has become problematic, and contains what I now believe to be factual inaccuracies,” he said this morning. “I cannot in good conscience publish it and expect anyone to believe it.”
When asked if he had any plans to publish a corrected version of the book, he said cryptically, “There is no book.” Farah declined to comment on his discussions of the matter with Corsi.
A source at WND, who requested that his name be withheld, said that Farah was “rip-shit” when, on April 27, President Obama took the extraordinary step of personally releasing his “long-form” birth certificate, thus resolving the matter of Obama’s legitimacy for “anybody with a brain.”
World Net Daily editor Joseph Farah plans to file a lawsuit against Esquire magazine next week over a satirical article alleging he was recalling a WND-published book questioning the legitimacy of President Barack Obama’s birth certificate.
Farah’s lawsuit is still being crafted and will be probably be filed in Washington, D.C. next week, he told TPM in an email. He said last month he was considering his legal options after Esquire published a parody article that said Farah was recalling Where’s the Birth Certificate? The Case that Barack Obama is not Eligible to be President by Dr. Jerome Corsi and giving refunds to anyone who already purchased a copy.
This essay is not a legal treatise but I think folks are misinformed about libel and slander laws in this country.
Now the Brits have freedom of speech and although they supposedly have no constitution they have several documents over the centuries that they refer to in their court opinions covering many of the so-called Rights we have under our Bill of Rights.
In Great Britain, newspapers and magazines are sued all the time and the plaintiffs sometimes make off with a lot of money.
There are a number of considerations in the analysis of libel/slander laws.
First, Americans scream freedom of speech at every single protest rally in this country. We have this strange view of that freedom sometimes.
Freedom as a general concept is meaningless, at least to me. The Koch brothers are free to do just about anything they wish compared to someone living in some slum on a minimum wage.
Hitler along with his three main enemies who convened that summit at Yalta all spoke of freedom!
In America, we take one small clause in one short Constitutional Amendment and have litigated that phrase to death. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. ...
Second, Americans have problems with their own history. I mean before our Constitution was out of diapers, Congress passed its first Alien and Sedition Act; the first of many enacted over the centuries.
I don’t care if the context is the War of 1812 or the Civil War or World War I, our governments (State & Federal) have incarcerated Americans for speaking and writing and painting and engaging artistically in just about any genre of expression that you can imagine.
To this date, we still incarcerate people for speaking out.
There was that animal who recently told his listeners that certain Federal Judges should be killed and then proceeded to give out the Judge’s home addresses along with their pix. The irony as I have pointed out on prior occasions is that Federal Appellate Judges will decide his fate. Hahahaha
CHICAGO—Hal Turner, an Internet radio talk show host and blogger, was convicted today in federal court in Brooklyn, N.Y., of threatening to assault and murder three federal appeals court judges in Chicago in retaliation for their 2009 ruling upholding handgun bans in Chicago and a suburb. Jurors deliberated approximately two hours before returning their guilty verdict in a trial that began on Tuesday. Turner, 47, of North Bergen, N.J., who had been released on bond, was immediately taken into custody pending sentencing, but no date was immediately set.
He faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
This jackass actually told his listeners: Let me be the first to say this plainly: These Judges deserve to be killed…
So people are prosecuted every single day in this country for speaking out on a variety of subjects.
You cannot come onto Dagblog and write about how some politician should be shot dead tomorrow. It is part of the bloggers’ agreement with Dagblog. I am not getting into the morality here for morality is in the eyes of the beholder.
By the way, I think beckerhead has violated this aspect of all applicable Alien & Sedition Acts on several occasions including the time he stated he would pay for the bullet that killed Michael Moore!
Third, Americans do not understand Civil Libel/Slander Law. Forget the criminal legal context for a moment.
The Common Law definitions of slander and libel are now subsumed under the category of defamation:
Defamation—also called calumny, vilification, traducement, slander (for transitory statements), and libel (for written, broadcast, or otherwise published words)—is the communication of a statement that makes a claim, expressly stated or implied to be factual, that may give an individual, business, product, group, government, or nation a negative image. It is usually a requirement that this claim be false and that the publication is communicated to someone other than the person defamed (the claimant)
This definition from Wiki is as good as anything out of Black’s Law Dictionary.
Now since the World Wars and the McCarthy Era, criminal prosecution of publishers for defamation has kind of gone by the wayside; although this new Patriot Act has kind of recharged this issue.
But civil liability for defamation has been severely curtailed since the sixties as a direct result of one Supreme Court decision—and of course the massive case law that decision generated.
DATE: March 31, 2004
STUDENT: Lisa Nash, 1L
CASE: New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 376 U.S. 254; 84 S. Ct. 710; 11 L. Ed. 2d 686, U.S. Supreme Court 
FACTS: On March 29, 1960, the New York Times carried a full-page advertisement entitled, “Heed Their Rising Voices,” which contained several paragraphs describing unfair treatment of Alabama State College student protestors, two of which specifically mentioned unfair treatment by the police. Respondent L.B. Sullivan was one of three commissioners of the city of Montgomery, Alabama. One of his main duties was the supervision of the city police department. Although none of the statements made within the advertisement directly named Sullivan, he argued that, as supervisor of the city police department, he was being accused of allowing the described treatment of the students.
It was found that some of the statements contained in the two paragraphs in question were not accurate descriptions of what had actually occurred and placed the police department in a very unfavorable light. Additionally, all witnesses who testified stated that they did not believe the statements in reference to the respondent.
Respondent Sullivan brought a claim of libel against four of the individuals whose names, among others, were in the advertisement and against the New York Times for publishing the advertisement.
This is a nice summary of the case (the link goes on for a few more paragraphs) by a law student.
There are a lot of issues presented by this case.
My take on Sullivan is that if you are a public figure it is very difficult to sue some publisher/author/radio jockey for defamation of character.
You would have to prove at a minimum that the statement about you was false, that the publisher knew the statement was fault when the statement was published, that the publisher intended to do you harm, and that you were harmed by the statement in some material manner—you lost money!
Before this decision there were nearly US$300 million in libel actions outstanding against news organizations from the Southern states and these had caused many publications to exercise great caution when reporting on civil rights, for fear that they might be held accountable for libel. After The New York Times prevailed in this case, news organizations were free to report the widespread disorder and civil rights infringements. The Times maintained that the case against it was brought to intimidate news organizations and prevent them from reporting illegal actions of public employees in the South as they attempted to continue to support segregation http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_Times_Co._v._Sullivan
That’s 300 mill in 1964 dollars!
Funny then that this action takes us all the way back to the days of the Abolition Movement when northern publishers were distributing anti-slavery literature throughout the pre-Confederate States much to the chagrin of Dixie.
It would be pretty easy to get a positive verdict against the NYT from an Alabama jury in 1964.
But getting away from the North/South dichotomy with regard to this issue, suffice it to say that it is difficult (read expensive) for a public figure to sue some publisher/writer/speaker for defamation.
Civil actions no longer inhibit as much ‘free speech’ as they once did. Newspapers would be restrained from reporting almost any event if they were afraid of being sued for what they published. And, in the end as was argued in Sullivan, our judicial branches are as much a part of our governments as any other branch and allowing these suits to progress would be governmental restraint of free speech!
One of the funniest example of defamation suits involved O’Reilly. http://www.slate.com/id/2103910/
This lying liar sued Franken on a number of counts including publishing Bill’s picture; a picture that showed him in an unfavorable light. That is, a real picture of the blowhard was presented that demonstrates how he really looks. Hahahaha
Bill actually got Fox lawyers to attempt to procure an injunction against publication of Al’s book!
See. Prior restraint in the civil courts!
According to the Senator, the judge deliberated for about ten minutes and denied the injunction.
Just to be fair and balanced, freedom of speech works both ways.
After being called a Communist, Marxist, and 9/11 truther by Fox News for over a year Van Jones has decided to threaten the news organization with legal action. Yesterday Van Jones, the former Green Jobs advisor under President Obama who was forced to resign after extensive coverage from Glenn Beck, sent a letter to Fox News ordering them to “cease and desist” making “a series of sensational and inflammatory charges” against Jones. The letter claims that a number of “demonstrably, unequivocally and absolutely false” statement have been made about Jones by numerous Fox News personalities including Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly, and Sean Hannity. The letter also demands that Fox News broadcast a retraction of the false statements made concerning Van Jones.
I must listen to hundreds of straight out lies disseminated by cable news every week. Mediamatters has to keep up the good fight every hour of every day.
Beck has no evidence that this poor Van Jones is a practicing communist for chrissakes.
Beck’s sole motive is to harm Van Jones.
Beck has always had and always will have a reckless regard for truth.
It would be fun to see a defamation suit in this context. I mean if Van Jones got the right team of attorneys there would be a cross examination of Beck that would match the cross of William Jennings Bryan in the Scopes_trial
Getting back to my first link, Esquire Magazine has been doing parodies for decades before Heff left them for chrissakes. Hahaha
At the end of the parody the author states that the article was a parody.
I doubt anything will come of it but I would give anything to see Corsi cross-examined.