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September 9, 2004
Who Forged Bush Records?

CBS News and 60 Minutes claims that it has documents from George Bush's TANG service that prove undue influence had been used to get Bush his excellent ratings. As one of the exhibits, CBS produced this internal memo, dated but unsigned and with no letterhead, stating: "Staudt has obviously pressured Hodges more about Bush. I'm having trouble running interference and doing my job. Harris gave me a message today from Grp regarding Bush's OETR and Staudt is pushing to sugar coat it. Bush wasn't here during rating period and I don't have any feedback from 187th in Alabama either."

As Power Line notes and Free Republic first saw, something is terribly amiss with this memo. Take a look at "187th". The suffix is represented in superscript, which in 1973 could only be accomplished with a typesetting device -- which in 1973 would have cost thousands of dollars, making it extremely unlikely to have been used for a simple memo like this. Also, take a look at the apostrophes. Typewriters use straight up-and-down apostrophes rather than curved (same for quote marks), and these are curved.

The only possible conclusion is that the document is forged, and forged fairly recently on a computer. The same is true with this document, again unsigned and without letterhead. Take a look at the apostrophe in "He's" in paragraph 2. It's another curved apostrophe, which again indicates a typesetting machine or computer program.

Someone has some explaining to do. And someone at CBS should be asking their crack investigative journalists how they managed to miss such suspicious material, especially since "memos to file" should be expected to have signatures, names, and some sort of letterhead.

UPDATE: Some commenters have said that they think the IBM Selectric/Executive models had curved single-quote/apostrophe characters. I disagree, having grown up using them. The typewriter only had one key for the single-quote/apostrophe character, and single quote characters often were used to contain text. Had the character curved to the left, the ball would have had to have another quote mark curved back to the right at the same time, for which no key would have been assigned. That's why the quote marks on typewriters always went straight up and down. Curved quote marks and apostrophes could only be produced by typesetting machines -- and computer word processors.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at September 9, 2004 11:56 AM

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» Stop the conspiracy, I want to get off from mypetjawa v. 2.0 (beta)
In the absence of more compelling evidence, I would suggest the right-leaning bloggers lay off this forged documents business. Please stop. You're making us look like a bunch of barking-moonbats. The problem with conspiracy theories is that they usuall... [Read More]

Tracked on September 9, 2004 12:56 PM

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Last night, the CBS news program "60 Minutes II" produced memos dated 1972 and 1973 that were purported to raise questions about the President's Texas Air National Guard service. (May 4 '72, May 19 '72, Aug 1 '72, Aug 18 [Read More]

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Tracked on September 9, 2004 4:17 PM

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