It is a well established fact that Ben Carson says a lot of crazy, weird shit, but usually, he spaces it out a little. That wasn't always the case, as his first paid speech for quack supplement company Mannatech demonstrates.
At Wednesday night's Republican debate, Carson was quizzed about his relationship to the quack supplement pyramid marketer, and he weirdly tried to distance himself from the outfit, while also saying how great their quack product is:
QUINTANILLA: One more question. This is a company called Mannatech, a maker of nutritional supplements, with which you had a 10-year relationship. They offered claims that they could cure autism, cancer, they paid $7 million to settle a deceptive marketing lawsuit in Texas, and yet you’re involvement continued. Why?
CARSON: Well, that’s easy to answer. I didn’t have an involvement with them. That is total propaganda, and this is what happens in our society. Total propaganda. I did a couple of speeches for them, I do speeches for other people. They were paid speeches. It is absolutely absurd to say that I had any kind of a relationship with them. Do I take the product? Yes. I think it’s a good product.
That was, of course, a lie, but as little attention as the lie is getting from the media in the wake of Jeb Bush's total implosion at that debate. the media is completely ignoring the insanity that undergirds it. Carson still takes the product, and still makes discredited claims about it. But if you think today's Ben Carson is nuts, check out the blizzard of weird stuff he put out in his very first speech to a Mannatech gathering.
Carson heroically underwent surgery he didn't think he needed, in order to prevent the "needless deaths" of others.
Carson began the speech with an extended riff on his prostate cancer, and told the crowd how Mannatech's products had rid him of his prostate cancer symptoms. And THEN it got weird:
"I actually toyed with the idea of not having surgery done...But then I began to realize that having a high profile, that if I did that, a lot of other people might follow that example, too, but they may not be quite as diligent about taking the product as I was, and there would be a lot of needless deaths, and I didn't feel as though I could have that on my conscience. So I went ahead and had the surgery done."
That's right, Ben Carson entertained the idea of curing his cancer with a product that is literally named after a miracle food that falls from heaven, but thought better of it because other people might die from not being able to count pills, or scoops of powder, or whatever the hell it is. Somehow, though, telling an army of pyramid marketers that the stuff totally could have cured him would not result in people following that example.
2. Ben Carson always wanted to be a noble missionary doctor, until he decided "I'd rather be rich!"
Until he was 13, Carson was inspired by "noble" missionary doctors, and the "life of Christ," to follow a selfless path. Then, not so much:
"Having grown up in dire poverty, I decided I'd rather be rich!"
3. While he was going around stabbing and hammering people, Ben Carson was also the neighborhood psychotherapist.
"Now, I didn't know any psychiatrists, but on television, they seemed very rich, you know, they drove Jaguars, had big fancy mansions, plush offices, and all they had to do was talk to crazy people all day."
4. Ben Carson says he "always had a thing for knives"
Yes, he told the stabbing story again, but this time, added a few weird, fetish-y references to knives:
"I've always had this thing for knives, you know, I was fascinated with knives."
"I locked myself in the bathroom that day and started thinking about... knives."
5. Ben Carson says he knew he had a "personality disorder," told God to cure it or else.
New to the stab story is Carson's self-diagnosis with a "personality disorder," which he couldn't afford to treat with science, so he told God to fix it, or don't:
"I was already reading about personality disorders and behavior disturbances, and I knew that I had one...and I said 'Lord, you're going to have to be my psychotherapist, because I can't go on like this,' and I just turned it over to Him. And I said, 'If you want me to do something in life, you're gonna have to fix this. If not, you know, I'll just go on like this, but I'll tell you right now,I can't do it.'"
6. Ben Carson said he had a pray-off with a patient's father, and brought her back to life
Carson told the audience about a little girl who kept having setbacks, who had "zero" chance of survival or recovery, but who was saved by the power of prayer:
"They said 'I think we've lost the child, and I think it's time to quit.' And I said 'It's not time to quit yet, I haven't finished praying yet.'"
The little girl experienced several more ups and downs, but in the end, she recovered. I guess if you believe in prayer therapy, this story isn't that weird, but then it is weird that Carson apparently abandoned the technique a few years later. Here he is breaking news to a similarly hopeless patient in 2008. Let's see how the prayer thing worked out then:
7. Ben Carson's secret plot to destroy the oil industry.
This is similar in character to his recent declaration that the United States could have leveraged Saudi Arabia into turning over Osama bin Laden by "declaring energy independence," except here, instead of promoting domestic energy development, he just says to completely get rid of the petroleum industry. Can you imagine if they found tape of Obama saying anything like this?
"If we decided we wanted to get rid of all the petroleum in our society, and petroleum-base... we dry up all the funds for Osama bin Laden and all the terrorists."
"We're never going to give up, and they're never going to give up, so if it's just a matter of shooting bombs and missiles, and trying to terrorize each other, that's going to go on forever."
"Terrorize each other?" Is Ben Carson saying that the United States was terrorizing al Qaeda?
The craziest thing about all of this, though, is that if you asked Ben Carson about all of it, today, he'd either stick by all of it, or come up with something weirder and crazier. When do you suppose the media will begin to notice a pattern in all of this?