I can't believe the GOP is stuck with its current field of potential nominees. Are there no basic qualifications for running for president in a major party?
Ben Carson especially takes my breath away. Most people think all doctors are smart. Not true. I taught pre-med students for ten years. Some pre-meds were smart; others weren't. The latter were, however, good at memorizing, which is extremely helpful in learning body parts and prescription names but isn't worth much in terms of thinking. So I wasn't as surprised as many were that Ben Carson is an unthinking person who accepts and regurgitates really nutsy ideas about history and other things.
Such things as the income tax.
In the Republican debate this week he proposed eliminating the tax deduction for home mortgage expense. May his immortally stupid words be chiseled on his tombstone: “But the fact of the matter is, people had homes before 1913, when we introduced the federal income tax, and later after that started deductions.”
Gosh. That is such a stupid statement it almost defies explication. For starters, it's a huge example of mixing apples and oranges. Or is it a non sequitur? Or maybe there's no label for such nonsense. First he actually says that people had homes before there was an income tax, thus idiotically indicating people don't need an income tax in order to own homes. Why say such a thing? No one has ever made the preposterous claim that we need an income tax in order to encourage home ownership. So why does he attack that premise? Yikes!
Then it gets worse: "...and later after that started deductions." Well, yeah. Deductions do in fact get established after a tax is established. So what? What's the point?
God help us that this man should ever be trying to enunciate orders from the Oval Office about whether or not we're going to start World War III. Or do anything of any consequence whatsoever. No matter his intent, he would end up either inadvertently surrendering to Iceland or ordering an anchovy pizza.
All that Carson has to offer is that he speaks more softly than Donald Trump. Other than that he's the worst one on the stage. I have to believe that the Republican voters will tire of him. I just have to believe that.
I said in the title of this piece that Carson makes the rest of the weak GOP field look good. Well, almost but not quite. Jeb Bush is still wallpaper. Rubio is offensive to many of the GOP base because he is Cuban. Plus he is not going to appeal to Latinos in the general election, and for the same reason — being Cuban. I notice these phenomena, but I don't create or approve them. To Latinos, being Cuban is not being Latino, a distinction in American politics that the GOP doesn't understand. (I've explained this distinction before and will again if Rubio stays around.) Donald Trump? He is a horn blower who currently is running out of sour notes to trumpet. Fiorina? The GOP will never nominate a woman.
Is there anybody else in the "top tier" of GOP wannabes? If there is and I can't remember who that is, that says a lot about him, doesn't it? Oh yeah, Kasich. He's okay, not a wild man.
But he doesn't gain traction.
Cruz? Yeah, I forgot Cruz. Forgetfulness is contagious. There he was in the debate, gallantly upholding a Texas tradition: he forgot one of the five departments he will eliminate from the federal government. In 2012 Rick Perry forgot one of the three departments he would have eliminated from the federal government. Therefore you can forgive me for forgetting Cruz. But observe: Texas and the GOP nominating process are improving. We now have a Texan who can remember two more things than did a prior Texan.
Real progress, folks! ........Now watch this!..... Remember the Alamo! Remember Pearl Harbor!.... and what was that third one? ..... Got it!....Remember the Maine!......
Do I get to be president? Or do I have to move to Texas?