Ben Carson for HUD Secretary: It's Not What You Know, It's Who You Know
Donald Trump is reportedly closing in on announcing Dr. Ben Carson as his Secretary for the Department of Housing and Urban Development. In case you haven't been paying attention, Ben Carson spent his career as a brain surgeon. Not an apartment surgeon. Not a community surgeon. Not a mortgage surgeon. A brain surgeon.
Just days ahead of the news that Carson is being considered for this vital cabinet position, his team put out word that Dr. Carson didn't believe he was qualified to run a government agency.
This is after Carson concluded a sideshow of a presidential primary campaign during which his future boss Donald Trump likened him to a child molester, thug, and pathological liar. That was the same presidential campaign that saw Dr. Carson take two weeks off the trail for a book tour. Carson ran for president but questions his qualifications to work for the president. Okay...
This whole sad affair proves the old saying: "It's not what you know, it's who you know."
If you polled the leading housing and urban development officials in the nation last week, even just Republicans, not a single person would have come up with the name Ben Carson for HUD Secretary.
Carson is in this position for two reasons. First, Trump gets to show that he's willing to put a black person in his cabinet. DINO - Diversity in Name Only. He doesn't realize that Ben Carson has the same credibility in the black community as Clarence Thomas. Second, Carson is getting the nod because he endorsed and supported Donald Trump. This is a gift. This is a token gift. This is a shame.
HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business.
Dr. Carson cites his experience growing up in the "inner city" in the 1950s and 1960s as the right formula for him to lead a massive government bureaucracy in 2016. Okay...
Some believe that we are in a new housing bubble, with 50 straight months of home price gains as of August 2016. If and when the bottom falls out of the housing market again, are we trusting that Ben Carson is equipped with the knowledge to steer the nation through that crisis?
The Trump cabinet picks are shaping up to be a parade of the deplorable. The list of potentials is full of the silly, bigoted, scary, and slimy. We can only hope that if Dr. Ben Carson accepts the position of HUD Secretary, that he staffs the agency with people who actually know what they are doing. Qualifications matter.
Photo: The Wall Street Journal