This week's winner (all alone, since this is an abbreviated edition because I'm on my way to New Mexico) is Dr. Ben Carson, living proof that being a doctor does not make one an expert on all manner of policy issues.
Dr. Carson is the latest sweetheart of the far-right, because he was ill-mannered enough to use this year's National Prayer Breakfast as a platform to attack the Affordable Care Act, proving only that being a doctor does not even make one an expert on health care issues [the American Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Family Physicians, American College of Physicians (which represents internal medicine doctors), and American Psychiatric Association, among others, have all endorsed the ACA].
Also, since he was already breaking the Prayer Breakfast's nonpartisan traditions, he also voiced his opinion on taxation--he believes taxes should be a flat 10%, because that's what the Bible suggests for tithing. Which means only that doctors can be clueless enough to not understand that the world has changed considerably in the last couple thousand years, and at no point in the Bible does it say that the modern United States can be or should be run according to financial suggestions passed down at that time. But it does have a few things to say about how we should treat the rich versus the poor--Carson seems to have skipped those lessons. And I have to wonder if he bills his patients based on what they would have paid in Biblical times. I'm guessing not.
But the reason he's this week's idiot is that on the most recent of a series of interviews with the always-friendly Sean Hannity, Sean lobbed one of the softballs he loves pitching to conservative heroes. He asked Dr. Carson about his views on gay marriage. Carson's answer: "Well, my thoughts are that marriage is between a man and a woman. It's a well-established, fundamental pillar of society and no group, be they gays, be they NAMBLA, be they people who believe in bestiality. It doesn't matter what they are. They don't get to change the definition."
So people who love other consenting adults of the same gender are the same as those who prey on children and who take advantage of animals? And this guy's a doctor? Really?
For most thinking people, that kind of insanity went out at least thirty years ago. But for America's Biggest Idiot, it's a brilliant response to Hannity's simple question. Carson spoke at CPAC a couple of weeks ago, and in the course of his remarks, he raised a horrifying specter, saying, "Let’s just say if you magically put me in the White House..."
Fortunately, the evil sorceror doesn't exist, outside of bad fantasy novels, with that much power. Unless he just wants to take the tour, whenever the idiots in Congress repeal the sequester, I'm pretty sure Ben Carson has no more chance of "magically" landing in the White House than he does of "magically" making a lick of sense. Which is to say, none at all.
And that's as it should be. I wouldn't invite Ben Carson to breakfast at my house, and I hope his status as the poster-boy for bad manners fades back into well-deserved obscurity in a hurry.