Frank Abagnale Jr. says: Fake! FAKE! FAKE!
Yee-Ha! (That was me, not Howard Dean.)
As I posted on LGF:
Just realized that we haven’t hear from the world’s foremost expert in forgeries: Frank Abagnale Jr. (Remember the movie Catch Me If You Can?) I bet that man is laughing his behind off. (Also see Abagnale’s comments one movie.)
Now, if he’d done these documents, they’d be on 30 year old paper, done with a 30 year old typewriter and ribbon — and possibly with the exact same typewriter used in some real documents. Remember when the communists made anyone with a typewriter submit sample pages? Each typewriter is unique!
And I sent an email:
I just sent an email to Abagnale’s company contact address (http://wwwabagnale….):
Sir,While this comes from my work account, this is a personal request. [my company] has nothing to do with this other than providing the job and desk and computer I was using when it occurred to me that America needs you. I ask you perform a service to America: Tell us, please, if the memos CBS now presents are forgeries or are authentic.
Most of us know you as the greatest living expert in the subject. Either way, this would be a great service to our nation if you could settle this issue.
Robin K. Juhl
I truly hope he decides to weigh in with an honest opinion.
AND I JUST GOT AN ANSWER!
Thank you for your e-mail. Though Mr. Abagnale has not personally seen the
documents or copies of the documents, from what he has seen on television he
believes the documents are forgeries. He feels this should be evident to
anyone of any knowledge of forged documents.
I can tell you that he sent an e-mail to Neil Cavuto of Your World on Fox
News Network (he knows him personally) that stated: “If my forgeries looked
as bad as the CBS documents, it would have been “Catch Me In Two Days”.
Abagnale & Associates
Good LORD! I went from having ~100 visitors since 2 Sep 04 to a current count of 2,444 (as of 9:22 PM CDT). And rising. You want traffic? Get Charles of Little Green Footballs to refer to you. It’s a mini-Slashdotting! This has been fun…and here’s where my traffic has been from:
Free Will says:
Even Frank W. Abagnale, Jr., the subject of the film “Catch Me If You Can” and possibly the world’s foremost expert on forgery, says they’re forgeries. Not even good ones, Dan. Give it up.
Right Thinking From The Left Coast says:
Remember the film Catch Me If You Can? The main character, Frank Abagnale, played by Leo DiCaprio, was a master forger. Someone genius blogger got the idea to email Abagnale and ask him what he thought of the CBS documents. His response:
If my forgeries looked as bad as the CBS documents, it would have been “Catch Me In Two Days.”
That is gold, Jerry…Gold
RatherBiased.com confirmed my contact, and also said:
Contacted by RatherBiased.com, Kelly Welbes, executive assistant to Abegnale, confirmed the message.
“The person who wrote it was just asking his opinion on it. Mr. Abignale did, in fact, send that email to Fox News. And it is the opinion of Mr. Abignale that, having seen the documents as presented by CBS on TV, it is his opinion that they are forgeries,” Welbes said.
The MOOREWATCH FORUMS entry was nice. One comment there pointed out they also have their own CBS May Have Used Fake Documents thread going.
The Gaming-Age Forums (not usually a political site!) included a link.
RatherGate.com game me a nice
GREAT catch, Robin.
The Capitalist Lion said:
Remember the film Catch Me If You Can? Well, one rather astute blogger tracked down an email address for Frank Abagnale Jr., and got a response.
TotalFark is sending traffic my way, but I am not a member, so I’m not privy to what they are saying.
(and I just remembered that doing updates dumps any previous comments–YIKES!–sorry folks. Some left me very nice comments and I fear they are now gone. And some of the code I cut/pasted has done very wonky things to my no-longer-WYSIWYG editor, Sigh.)
ZLMB, A Forum Sounding Board for Academicians, Apologists, and Skeptics Interested in things LDS, sent me some traffic.
The Ranting Raven has a hilarious angle on the CBS Killian documents, from Frank Abagnale Jr.â€”one of the worldâ€™s premier experts on forgery, whose true story was the basis for the 2002 film Catch Me If You Can.
Aishel isn't political, but
but I just thought it was funny that someone thought to e-mail Frank Abagnale (from Catch Me If You Can) to see if the documents were real not.
ConservativeUnderground.com noted it.
It's been posted on Yahoo News Messages.
Herfer's Paradise is another members only site I cannot access.
It's on the menu at the Wide Awake Cafe.
Well thatâ€™s just awesome. One, that a blogger thought to get his response. Jammies Brigade strikes again. Two, that he allowed a staffer to respond, and three, what he said to Cavuto.
DANEgerous Weblog noted the story.
John Kerry for President? You Must Be Joking seems to like the idea.
Pearly Gates: An Angels Blog (a baseball site!) picked it up.
Peppermint Patty approves.
Hud's Blog-O-Rama thinks it's "pretty funny."
Holy Lord have mercy! I got a referral from Popdex!
Vox says the email
Cracked me up.
The Mad Cow's Steakhouse says "Hehe."
Well, I know there were more, but I can’t seem to get at logs earlier than 8:58 PM CDT. I’m now at 2,632 visitors…Sheesh! Thanks to you all
AND GOD BLESS YOU ALL!
Lunch! MyLoveyWife made me a killer sandwhich! Yum! Thanks, HoneyBunny!
It’s been 24 hours. 3,136 new visitors. More referrers….
http://glmiller.blogspot.com/2004/09/frank-abagnale-jr-on-cbs-forgeries.html linked in without comment.
Gregg Henson says
This is hilarious.
Llamas, a member of Debunkers.org posted it there.
If Frank says they’re fakes – they’re fakes. Case closed, end of discussion.
Why should I do the hard work? I can go to the Technorati watch site to see who links to me!
It's discussed on the Innoruuk Community Forums.
Somebody posted it on SoonerFans.com.
That great old one, Dr. Jerry Pournelle, responded to my email to him by posting it on his fine website, so now I get referrals from there, too.
Interesting. I fear I don’t have as much time to go surfing about as I would like, but fortunately I have a lot of readers who send me things which I have to read so that is one reason I haven’t so much time…
And now, it seems I've made the NY Post!
Abagnale hasn’t examined the actual documents â€” CBS won’t release them â€” but from what he’s seen on TV, they’re “evident” forgeries, he said in an e-mail to Internet blogger Robin Juhl that was confirmed by his office.
Free Republic (the “Freepers!”) have now picked up on it.
Speaking of the Freepers, this is MOST interesting: I was not the first to think of asking Mr. Abagnale. It was suggested by a user “PJ-Comix” here at FreeRepubllic.com, at 1:32:49 PM PDT on 9 Sep 04, but it seems nobody actually did it and posted the results.
It made "Quote of the Day" at Sirman on the Mount.
Great American Sports Fans seems to have a post on it.
Now, it's on the "FuhrerboardII." Wha...Huh?????
Lord help me if Slashdot picks this up! And lunch is over…back to looking at/playing with VIOP!
The system had a memory hole, it seems, so it died until I got home to reboot. Sorry! Now at 3,500 visitors!
Now, I see LOTS of traffic from Instapundit. I also see that he corrects the record:
FROM THE OPINIONJOURNAL POLITICAL DIARY:
“If my forgeries looked as bad as the CBS documents, it would have been, ‘Catch Me In Two Days'” — ex-forger and con man Frank Abagnale, made famous by Leonardo DiCaprio in the film Catch Me If You Can.
Plus, I’ll bet that Dan Rather didn’t get to sleep with Jennifer Garner.
UPDATE: Mike Krempasky writes that this is where the Abagnale quote first appeared.
And a big thanks to Mr. Krempasky and Mr. Reynolds for keeping the record straight!
A new morning dawns, and the storm is mostly passed. Visitors now trickle in at less than one per minute (most coming from Instapundit). I’m just short of 4,000, but it may get there yet. Wow. It seems I managed to make the lists of “Most Popular Links” on Bloglines and the Blogdex.
From Blogdex, I see that Rob Bernard picked it up, too.
I just couldn’t keep up! Maybe I’ll do some post-analysis of the logs? Thanks to all for visiting. I plan to proudly wear the mantle of a “Pajamahadeen!” But for now, I gotta go to work. If only I could win one of those BIG lotteries….
UPDATE (9 Jan 04):
Here we go again! The CBS investigation should be out soon. That idiot Prof. David E. Hailey has finished his attempt to “prove” they were done on a typewriter. See the critique by a real expert here). LGF is firing up on it again. If only Allah Pundit hadn’t decided to retire!
Here’s my take–and it’s a simple and devastating one: To prove they MIGHT be real, they must show me that one can sit at a typewriter that might have been owned and used by the Texas ANG at the time and produce copies the documents that are at least as exactly a match as LGF (and thousands of others) has produced using MS Word. Since they CAN’T do that (if they could, they would by now!), the documents MUST be latter-day fakes. It’s that simple.
Of course, the WizBangBlog has a great analysis, too, with another DEVASTATING connclusion:
So what’s the big deal? None of these fonts are from typewriter balls and none were available for 1970’s era typewriters (with the possible exception of Prestige Elite). Hailey claims that ITC American Typewriter is the font, yet that font was not designed until 1974 by Joel Kaden and Tony Stan, and had no lineage to IBM (IBM is not one of the listed license holders for the font).
We have now identified yet another of Hailey’s exhibits that is not exactly what it purports to be. Since the report is final, we await an explaination or revision in the really, really final version.
Of course the best part, is that by identifying ITC American Typewriter as the font and failing to produce a superscript “th”, Hailey unintentionally proves what he set out to disprove – the memos were created on modern computer equipment.
[Bold in original; underlined italics added]
END OF UPDATE (of 9 Jan 04)
UPDATE (20 Feb 04): Fixed the old formatting problems! The new WYSIWYG editor can now handle these problems. Yea, PIVOT!