Hear me, O Americans. If lots of people want to give you lots and lots of money to go stand on stages and just kinda sleepily free-associate whatever pops into your mind in response to prompts from strangers, and want to treat you like a rock star for doing it, and will support you in this behavior for like nine months, that is not an offer you decline. That is an offer you accept!
Here at Deadspin, my job is to write what I think about stuff, more or less. Sometimes there might be more to it than that—I might have to watch a lot of cartoons first, or whatever—but basically, that’s the idea. I have a lot of freedom, and a steady paycheck, and it’s cool! But even so, the things I write have to get at least a cursory eyeballing from an editor to make sure that they are either not insane at all, or a tolerable kind of insane. Ben Carson’s job for the past couple of years—since the Washington Times hired him as an opinion columnist in July 2013, at least, and most definitely not ending with his withdrawal from the 2016 Republican primary campaign on Friday—has been even cooler than mine. He just shows up places and says whatever—The Egyptian pyramids are grain silos, or My intelligence sources are better than the White House’s, or Reince Pubis—and everybody goes, “I mean, clearly that’s bonkers, but he used to do brain surgery so it’s cool.” And then they give him a bunch of money. Even when he does bad raps! That is a good-ass job.
Ben Carson will not get to do this job within the Republican primary campaign anymore, but he has scored a gig as the chairman of something called My Faith Votes, which sounds pretty sweet. He will show up places, and younger people with more energy will take him by the shoulders and point him in a direction, and he will walk in that direction until he bumps into a microphone, and then someone will say something at him, and then he will raise his brows and go, “Well, you see,” and just say whatever—“Kim Jong-un is Vladimir Putin in makeup”; “The St. Louis arch is the doorway through which Great C’thulhu enters our realm”; “I led the National League in home runs in 1974”—and then people will applaud, and then someone will drive him somewhere, possibly home. In the meantime, he will sell lots of copies of the book about all the cool stuff he didn’t do and some other cool stuff he did do. Pretty good job. This all worked out pretty nicely for Ben Carson. Congratulations to him!