If Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf taught us anything before moving on to a likely future career as either a Starbucks franchisee or bomb impact test subject, it's that the more audacious you are in lying, the more people will love you.
In other words, if you're going to lie, you might was well do it brazenly and with a lot of panache.
Our beloved Cleveland Browns, a Weapon of Mass Disinformation at this time of the year, have taken this message to heart. If the team says they are interested in someone, you can be sure they aren't. It's the players they don't talk about that you have to watch.
I don't think any site other than this one has ever mentioned Ragone and the Browns in the same breath. That indicates we're either digging deeper or are simply more gullible.
I won't say which, but I should note that at one point in my life I owned both a heat pump and a Dodge Omni.
Still, we noticed that the team seemed to take an unhealthy interest in Ragone at the Senior Bowl. Then, yesterday, Brendan wrote in to the tipline to tell us that Ragone was on Chris Spielman's radio show informing listeners that he was heading north to Berea.
Ragone is likely to be a second-round QB selection. He has fallen somewhat, but certainly does not appear to be a late-round choice. Why would a team, presumably giddy about the notion of having two starting-caliber quarterbacks, talk to a Day 1 quarterback choice?
Maybe the St. Ignatius product is just in town and is dropping by to try to convince Carmen Policy to buy a Entertainment Book for the Louisville Alums Booster Club.
What then, to make of another tip which hit on Thursday that the Browns and Dallas Cowboys were talking about a potential draft day deal which would exchange Tim Couch for Dexter Coakley and flip draft choices.
Trading Couch might explain an interest in bringing on another quarterback.
Before we get carried away, let us again turn to the wisdom of Mr. Al-Saheef: "I now inform you that you are too far from reality".
Nothing is more fallible than a fan trying to put two and two together. A scenario where the Browns deal Couch and snag Ragone or Dorsey in mid-rounds of the draft has to be pure fiction because we've been told that the team is very happy with their quarterback situation. We've been told the team won't deal Couch unless someone knocks them over with an offer they can't refuse.
Therefore, these rumors are clearly just part of a shock and awe campaign. The Browns figure that if they create enough confusion, there will be a mass surrender of fans and journalists.
Based on what I see when I do the newswire each morning, it's working.
The Browns have been very clear about what they intend to do. There can't be anything to all this.