Skip to main content

The take down of Dr. Ben Carson goes nuclear

Written By | Nov 6, 2015

LOS ANGELES, November 6, 2015 — Political blogger Allahpundit called it:

Whoever sounded the rallying cry, it’s been answered.

All this week, the taking down of Dr. Ben Carson has proceeded apace. The recent media stories on the presidential front-runner have served to do three things: point out his lack of experience (he’s not fit for the presidency); point out his lack of scientific knowledge (he’s stupid); and point out his lack of character (we know you are a fraud, and we’ll dig until we prove it).

Ben Carson: Can Obama use martial law to keep White House post 2016

In 2008, no one in the traditional media dug this deeply into Barack Obama’s past and his memoir fabrications—but I digress.

The Politico hit piece today was icing on the take-down cake: Ben Carson admits fabricating West Point Scholarship.

“Ben Carson’s campaign on Friday admitted, in a response to an inquiry from POLITICO, that a central point in his inspirational personal story was fabricated: his application and acceptance into the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

“The academy has occupied a central place in Carson’s tale for years. According to a story told in Carson’s book, ‘Gifted Hands,’ the then-17 year old was introduced in 1969 to Gen. William Westmoreland, who had just ended his command of U.S. forces in Vietnam, and the two dined together. That meeting, according to Carson’s telling, was followed by a ‘full scholarship’ to the military academy.

“West Point, however, has no record of Carson applying, much less being extended admission.”

Washington Post writer Dave Weigel posted a section of “Gifted Hands” that Politico is using to buttress its case. It is one paragraph and not exactly a story point that his entire narrative hinges upon.

As any good reporter does, Weigel also did a comparison/contrast between what the Politico article alleges and what Dr. Carson recently said:

Politico uses one paragraph and maintains it is “a central point” to the candidate’s narrative. This is reaching. Any allegation lodged against a presidential candidate needs to be addressed, and Carson is addressing it, calling the Politico piece what it is: a hit job.

Politico chose to make a gigantic leap to inject a narrative: Dr. Carson is dishonest.

This fabricated narrative comes nowhere near the truth, substantiated by Hillary Clinton’s emails, that President Obama, Ambassador Susan Rice, and Democratic presidential candidate Clinton repeatedly went on record that a video was to blame for the 9/11 attack on the U.S. embassy at Benghazi that killed four Americans; but again, I digress.

It is obvious the media is on an agenda, and when the media is on an agenda, they go full nuclear.

Read: Who is Dr. Carson by a high school friend

Yesterday’s Time magazine piece by NBA star, author, and activist Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was another layer on the Ben Carson take-down cake.

Abdul-Jabbar warned that “Ben Carson Is Terrible for Black Americans.”

This headline alone points out the irony of this piece. Save for giving them the warm fuzzies and some form of ethnic pride in a “first black President” (truth: first bi-racial), Obama’s impact on black Americans or Americans of any color has been abysmal. The man who promised seas parting, healing, and a post-racial America has failed miserably over the past seven years to do any of that.

From the unemployment rate, to the current anti-police violence, to the activist Department of Justice, to his blatant ignoring of the black-on-black violence in Chicago (now dubbed as “Chi-raq”), President Obama continues to show himself a papiere mâché leader not just for Black Americans, but all Americans.

The Washington Post’s Philip Bump, and Deroy Murdock of National Review went into great detail in the past year on the facts behind these issues, so I will not reiterate them here. They are easily located in a Google search. So is Abdul-Jabbar using the actual record of President Barack Obama to compare a hypothetical Carson presidency against? If so, it seems like Dr. Ben Carson, or anyone in the Republican field would be a leg up for Blacks.

CNN’s piece “A Tale of two Carsons” by Scott Glover and Maeve Reston was probably the first layer on the Dr. Carson take down cake. The writers questioned Carson’s tale of spiritual redemption from a violent youth and managed to get an entire piece and lots of air time from it—I kid you not.

“In his 1990 autobiography, “Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story,” Carson describes those acts as flowing from an uncontrollable “pathological temper.” The violent episodes he has detailed in his book, in public statements and in interviews, include punching a classmate in the face with his hand wrapped around a lock, leaving a bloody three-inch gash in the boy’s forehead; attempting to attack his own mother with a hammer following an argument over clothes; hurling a large rock at a boy, which broke the youth’s glasses and smashed his nose; and, finally, thrusting a knife at the belly of his friend with such force that the blade snapped when it luckily struck a belt buckle covered by the boy’s clothes. […]

“But nine friends, classmates and neighbors who grew up with Carson told CNN they have no memory of the anger or violence the candidate has described.”

Here is a line from the article which I find telling:

“CNN was unable to independently confirm any of the incidents, which Carson said occurred when he was a juvenile.”

So, because CNN was unable to independently confirm these incidents, then they must be questionable! The all-powerful CNN, arbiter of truth… except when it comes to Democrat candidates.

All of this is true to form on how traditional media handles a Republican front runner. Anyone remember Herman Cain? In 2011, the drip, drip, drip of sexual allegations and pulling women out of the woodwork that were suspiciously associated with Obama’s campaign guru David Axelrod? Yeah, that did its job, and it appears the “powers” are seeking to do the same job to Dr. Carson.

What I find disheartening is the immediate latching on to the pieces as gospel by Republicans and conservatives who want their preferred candidate to move ahead. Instead of applying the critical thinking to the mainstream media that is usually encouraged, some in the Republican and conservative ranks are slicing up the cake and gobbling it down with relish.

Erick Erickson has already deemed the Carson campaign done:

“Carson’s life story has been a central point of his appeal and the West Point story has been part of that appeal. If the other campaigns and the media can go after Carson on trust, his campaign is finished. His support levels are very high, but his support is also very, very soft. People are supporting Carson because they are not enamored with the rest of the field, but they are not wedded to him.”

“Unhinged Blogger” Crystal Wright (GOP Black Chick) has had no problem peddling the Politico piece as confirmation of her opinions:

Blogger Ace of Spades framed it well. This rush to judgment by some in the Republican and conservative arena really shows how much they want Dr. Ben Carson to go away.

Rush Limbaugh has been doing what he does best: inside baseball on this manufactured Carson controversy. He calls it “a journalistic crime,” a naked attempt to destroy Carson’s reputation and his political future.

For now, Carson is going nowhere. He’s still on the main stage of next week’s Fox Business Network’s debate, and he is showing his mettle through confronting this take down head on.

Suffice to say with each controversy Carson shows he’s more than a lightweight and strengthens his potential to go the distance in this race.

We will see if he succeeds.

Jennifer Oliver OConnell

Jennifer Oliver OConnell offers witty, insightful, and direct opinion, analysis and musings on local and national politics and popular culture, with occasional detours into reinvention, food, and Yoga. Jennifer also teaches Yoga, and coaches clients on careers and reinvention. You can keep up with what's in Jennifer's orbit through her As the Girl Turns website.