Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson addresses the National Press Club Newsmakers Luncheon Oct. 9, 2015 in Washington, DC.
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty

Carson blasts ‘secular progressives,’ defends bogus claims

It was an amazing trifecta for Republican presidential hopeful Ben Carson: he made three ridiculous claims, about three very different subjects, all over the course of about half a day. But it was his defense for one of the three that continues to stand out.
 
The retired neurosurgeon said, for example, “Every signer of the Declaration of Independence had no elected office experience.” This, of course, is ridiculously untrue. Carson soon after made some specific claims about Medicare and Medicaid, which were also demonstrably wrong.
 
But it’s hard to look past Carson’s beliefs about the Egyptian pyramids. As the GOP candidate sees it, archeological and physical evidence should be ignored because, in Carson’s mind, the pyramids were built by the biblical Joseph to store grain.
 
And yesterday, the Republican presidential hopeful continued to defend his alternate version of reality.
“Some people believe in the Bible, like I do, and don’t find that to be silly at all, and believe that God created the Earth and don’t find that to be silly at all.” Carson told reporters in Miami during a stop on his book tour. “The secular progressives try to ridicule it any time it comes up and they’re welcome to do that.”
In other words, as Carson sees it, there should be two competing versions of historical and archeological facts. One can be based on evidence, research, and scholarship, though Carson looks down on such an approach, leaving it to “secular progressives,” as if reality has some kind of liberal bias.
 
The other is based on what Carson wants to believe is true. Indeed, not for the first time, the GOP candidate has acted as if his religious beliefs are some kind of trump card to be played when he can’t defend bogus claims.
 
Yesterday, however, a couple of Carson’s national rivals actually ridiculed him for his odd approach to reality.
 
Donald Trump, for example, called Carson’s bizarre pyramid beliefs “strange,” while Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) openly mocked the candidate he trails. BuzzFeed reported:
In an interview on Thursday morning, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul jokingly proposed his own theory to counter his opponent Ben Caron’s belief that the Egyptian pyramids were built to store grain.
 
“I’m really big into conspiracy theories, so I think they were probably built by the aliens as grain silos, don’t you think,” Paul joked on 1110AM WBT.
For the record, Paul has endorsed some pretty nutty ideas over the years. For him to mock someone else for espousing nutty theories sheds additional light on just how far out there Carson really is.
 
 

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Carson blasts 'secular progressives,' defends bogus claims