Some conservatives are whiners, no question about it. The latest whining comes from Ben Carson supporters complaining that their candidate is being scrutinized more closely that Barak Obama was. This is the kind of basic fairness argument that a child might make to wheedle something from a parent, but it’s hardly compelling in the rough-and-tumble world of politics. The right question is whether either of those two was scrutinized unfairly.
Carson is being scrutinized based on the evidence of what he said; Obama was not only scrutinized based on the evidence, but the evidence itself was scrutinized repeatedly. The criticism of Carson is fact-based while much of the criticism leveled at Obama was based on crackpot conspiracy theories in search of evidence that never materialized.
This blog and its 3,970 published articles is testimony to to the relentless onslaught against Barack Obama where every pixel of his life was examined from his birth certificate to bulges on his wife’s dress.
The difference between Obama and Carson is not one of scrutiny, but one of publicity. Despite the scrutiny given to Barack Obama, not much emerged that was newsworthy in the mainstream media. Sure some folks think that some true facts about Obama were more newsworthy than the attention they got, but people have different opinions on what is newsworthy, opinions tied to their biases.
It seems to this casual observer that Ben Carson has some low-hanging fruit on his personal tree that yields newsworthy items rather easily. It’s one thing for Obama to misspeak when tired or in a hurry. It’s another thing to misspeak in an edited book. Obama’s autobiography, Dreams from My Father, has some composite characters, and takes some license with the truth, but I do not find that it falsifies Obama’s achievements and Obama himself put a disclaimer at the beginning. Obama really was president of the Harvard Law Review, but Ben Carson really was not offered a scholarship to West Point.
When it comes to judging autobiographies, I am not all that strict. I’m willing to cut both Carson and Obama some slack. What really bothers me is the crazy stuff that Carson believes about science and history. I don’t expect a presidential candidate to know everything, but I expect candidates to know their limitations, and not go pontificating on topics about which they are clueless (e.g. the Pyramids of Egypt).
The White House responds:
‘I don’t agree with that statement,’ Press Secretary Josh Earnest said today, responding to Carson’s quip that his record is receiving more scrutiny than President Barack Obama’s and President Bill Clinton’s before that.
‘It’s not easy to run for president,’ Earnest said. ‘It shouldn’t be.’