Due to circumstances beyond our control, we now turn our jaundiced eye to Ben ‘Copernicus’ Carson, the novelty candidate of the 2016 Goat Rodeo. He’s at the top of the heap in evangelical Iowa (motto: Better Dead Than Well-Read), and so I suppose we need to look into this phenomenon.
First, we turn to The Atlantic, where the inestimable David A. Graham took the thankless task of looking at Ben Carson’s campaign finance, which seems to be a grifter’s paradise. Here’s the short-hand: his fundraising staff is shared by our old Pal Newticles:
“The 2012 Gingrich campaign and the 2016 Carson campaign share staff, and they share candidates who have proven they are able to rise to the top of the field—though the former speaker’s campaign showed that such success can be fleeting. Both campaigns have also been accused of using a campaign as a tool to sell books. Late in 2011, Gingrich and his wife Callista seemed to be combining a tour for their various books along with his stump appearances, requiring a delicate balancing act to adhere to the law.”
OK, that might be guilt by association, but as you may recall last week, Noot gave the good doctor some advice about how to grift run a campaign and do a book tour at the same time. Noot was widely thought to have used his 2012 Goat Rodeo run to keep Callista up to her kneepads in baubles from Tiffany.
“Carson is now doing something similar, spending some time doing book events—which can’t be paid for with campaign cash—while also doing some fundraisers and campaign events. (The campaign notes that he isn’t suspending all political activity.) Leon Wolf at RedState rolled his eyes at the move. “If Ben Carson wanted the job of being President, there is no way that a book tour would prevent him from doing everything in his power to expand his campaign right now and to take over the lead for good from Donald Trump,” he wrote.”
Graham also looks into the burn rate and where the money is going:
“One of the most important metrics in fundraising numbers is the burn rate—the proportion between the cash that campaigns are raking in, and the amount they spent in the same time period. Carson’s burn rate is 69 percent. That’s generally considered high… As as logic holds, it’s generally preferable to have a lower burn rate now and save for later in the campaign. But a lot of that depends on how the money is spent: Is it building a long-term organization that will provide for the campaign going ahead? If so, spending now isn’t an all-bad thing.”
So, where is the money going?
“In Carson’s case, a majority of what he’s raising is being plowed right back into fundraising costs—$11.2 million of the nearly $20.8 million. That means 54 cents out of every dollar Carson raises is going to raise more money. Carson’s campaign only spent roughly $3 million on everything else—merchandise, office supplies, field staff, space, travel, and so on. Compare that to Clinton, whose biggest expenses included media buys, payroll, and online advertising, spending that’s designed to build a real campaign infrastructure and future strategy.”
This past weekend Carson made the connection between abortion and slavery which was pretty astounding, but not unexpected. We now turn to some of the crazy things that Ben ‘Reichstag Fire’ Carson has said, which usually involves Hitler, Nazis, and/or slavery, sometime all at once.
We’re going to break it into categories to make the craziness easier to digest.
- Vaccination isn’t that important (retracted/clarified later)
- The debt ceiling doesn’t have to be raised (he doesn’t understand the debt ceiling)
- Wants to create a form of Hitlerjugend to turn in teachers for their free speech
- The Affordable Care Act is the worst thing since slavery
- Democrats are Nazis and Obama is Hitler
- Obamacare is worse that 9-11
- The world was literally created in 6 days and that the Big Bang is a fairy tale
- America was founded to be a Christian Theocracy
- Jews are to blame for the holocaust
- Taxes should be based on Biblical tithing
- Muslims cannot be president (later retracted/clarified)
- NAMBLA, beastiality, and gays are basically the same and marriage is between one man and one woman
- People come out of prison gay, therefore sexual orientation is a choice.
OK, all of that is pretty nutty. Very nutty. To me, the more alarming aspects are those dealing with his theocratic views. Theocracy is absolutely the enemy of democracy. Give theocrats the power of government and you will end up in the Middle East.
Religion and the Doctor
Dr. Carson is a member of the Seventh Day Adventists, which is historically (I believe from the Second Great Awakening in US history; we go nutty from time to time as my US history prof said…) a doomsday religion, based upon a prophesy from the founder about the end of the world. When the world didn’t end as predicted (Google “The Great Disappointment” – and skip the hits about Chimpy), it was a mathematical error and new dates were set, which comically were also in error. Now they just sort of say vague end times stuff. They’ve learned? Sure, why not.
Adventists are a particular sect of Christian protestantism that believes in the literal word of the Bible, from Creation through Exodus with all stops in between; there is no interpretation. It’s a really fascinating, uniquely American over-the-top split from mainstream protestant religions (and it is often lumped together with Mormonism, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Christian Science as a cult). Carson believes these things unequivocally.
As with most protestant denominations, Adventists have an antithetical relationship to the Catholic Church, but unlike most other protestant denominations, Adventists believe that other protestant sects are in league with the Debbil. From their own website:
Seventh-day Adventists are convinced of the validity of our prophetic views, according to which humanity now lives close to the end of time. Adventists believe, on the basis of biblical predictions, that just prior to the second coming of Christ this earth will experience a period of unprecedented turmoil, with the seventh-day Sabbath as a focal point. In that context, we expect that world religions—including the major Christian bodies as key players—will align themselves with the forces in opposition to God and to the Sabbath.
And if that isn’t telling the other religions that they are going to go to Hell, I don’t know what is.
Again, one of their core tenets is in Saturday worship, and they are willing to die on the cross for that:
“Anyone worshipping on another day than the seventh-day Sabbath [Saturday] will receive the mark of the beast.” (Ted Wilson, the global president of the Seventh-day Adventists)
So, no scheduling surgeries on a Saturday. Or emergency meetings.
Get off the cross, someone needs the wood
The Xristian Xrazies see him as someone loyal to his faith, which, you know cannot be that much different from theirs, and they love anyone who climbs on the cross. They see him as some sort of Jeebus champion and so they cheer him on, not realizing that he sees them as his mortal enemy in league with Ol’ Scratch, and Carson himself is cheering them on into the fire.
So, you want to guess why the nutty Dr. Carson is running for president? I think the answer is right in front of us.