When it comes to Donald Trump’s cabinet nominees, which one of these things is not like the others? Well for one thing, Ben Carson is clearly his “token black” in the cabinet, which is why Trump kept begging him to take the HUD Secretary job even after Carson kept publicly turning him down. But here’s what’s remarkable: Carson may be Trump’s only pick who isn’t corrupt and means no harm – and that’s unfortunate, considering he appears to have severe mental problems and he once admitted to attempted murder.
Go down the list of Donald Trump’s cabinet picks, and it’s difficult to find anyone who isn’t an objectively awful person with bad intent. Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson is a financial puppet of Russia. Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions has spent most of his career fighting against African-American civil rights. Trump’s Labor Secretary pick is against any minimum wage, and is only taking the job so he can screw his own fast food employees in order to boost his profits. The list goes on.
And then there’s Ben Carson. He’s such a punchline that he had scandals during his campaign involving pyramid schemes and the actual Pyramids. And he appears to have such severe mental problems that he was last seen slurring his way through a convention speech in which he compared Hillary Clinton to Lucifer. Oh, and he’s admitted in his own book that he once tried to stab his friend to death, making him the only known person to have confessed to attempted murder and still been nominated for a cabinet position.
But I don’t think Ben Carson is taking the HUD Secretary job because he wants to exploit the agency for corrupt personal financial gain. Nor do I think he wants to destroy it from within for ideological reasons, though perhaps only because his addled mind doesn’t appear to work on that level. Most likely, he’ll just be a “boss” sitting in a corner office saying nutty things in between his games of solitaire, while the lifelong employees at the agency try to work around him and keep the place in one piece.
And while Ben Carson will be an absolutely awful Secretary of Housing an Urban Development, considering the malicious ill intent of everyone else being nominated for the other cabinet positions, he just might be Donald Trump’s least awful cabinet pick. That’s not remotely a defense of Carson, who belongs in a padded cell. It’s just that the rest of Trump’s picks are just that bad.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report