Transparency in government? Sure.
But, as the American Thinker notes, there are limits:
As evident is that public officials are under no “transparency” obligation to address all questions. Were the right fringe to allege that Barack Obama is in fact a woman, and demand a photograph of his penis to definitively prove otherwise, and the left fringe retaliated by alleging that Sarah Palin is a man, and requested the same sort of photographic proof, Andrew [Sullivan] would surely join me in concluding that both politicians have some right to privacy. Right?
Although, to be honest, I doubt that Obama holds a huge privacy interest in his original long form birth certificate, especially after his short form has already been publicly produced. Perhaps there is something embarrassing about the info on the longer form (his father isn't really his father, one commentor here speculated), but that has nothing to do with the salient question: where was Obama born?
However, at some point, the craziness has to stop. Ten months ago, there was a clamoring for Obama's birth certificate. The State of Hawaii produced it (the official short form version) which showed that Obama was born in Hawaii. Did that make the controversy go away?
So what makes anybody think that producing the longer form will make it go away? It just kicks the can further down the road, but the game is still being played.
And why would conspiracy theorists believe the long form birth certificate? They already believe that Hawaiian officials have produced a fake and/or false short form version. So they're suddenly going to shut up when the State of Hawaii produces the "long form" version?
Kevin Drum nails it:
If someone produces actual evidence of scandal or wrongdoing, then you have to respond. But if mere conspiracy theorizing is all that's required, then the sky's the limit. Bill Clinton has to prove he wasn't transporting bales of coke through Mena airfield. Barack Obama has to prove his mother wasn't in Kenya in August 1961. Sarah Palin has to prove she wasn't faking a pregnancy in 2008. John McCain has to prove he didn't collaborate with the enemy while he was in a Vietnamese prison camp.
Conspiracy theorists will always be with us. But the adult community doesn't have to humor them. All that does is make things worse.
"Birthers" will argue: "Well, why doesn't he produce it *anyway*?!? Humor us. Make this go away. the fact that he won't produce the long form only makes it look *more* likely that Obama is hiding something"
I've already addressed the "make this go away" issue. Producing the long form birth certificate won't make the "birthers" go away.
But what's more, the birther argument presupposes that Obama is actually sweating this issue. And he's not. There's no closed door meeting in the White House, where a bunch of grim advisors are wringing their hands about "what to do about the birther issue".
You know where those meetings are happening? In the offices of GOP legislators. They have to confront angry Republican voters, and dodge questions about their position on the birther issue.
So… why shouldn't Obama produce this full birth certificate? No reason. But seeing as how it won't end the controversy, and the controversy hurts the GOP, why would he???
RELATED: A leeading birther site closes down. Follow the link to read why. It's funny.