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Vail Daily columnist Richard Carnes: Hearing voices is nothing new

Here’s some fascinating news to start the New Year: Christian conservative leader Pat Robertson says he has a secret straight from a voice in his head. This voice, which he has heard many times before, told Pat who will be the next president of the United States.

“I think (the voice) showed me about the next president, but I’m not supposed to talk about that so I’ll leave you in the dark,” he said cryptically last Tuesday on the Christian Broadcasting Network’s “700 Club.”

Yes, according to Robertson, this is the same voice that promised him the world would end in 1982, he should run for president in 1988, a bad deity caused the Haitian quake, Hurricane Katrina was a good deity’s retribution for abortion, and 9/11 was America’s fault because of our heathen ways.



Sometimes I wish there really were something like the devil. That way I could pay the evil make-believe thingamajig to take care of morons like Robertson.

Fortunately, common sense and rational thought always prove otherwise.



Yet, on the other hand, I saw a good likeness of Mitt Romney in my cereal this morning. Given that I was enjoying a bowl of All-Bran, what does that mean? What if I saw Herman Cain in a bowl of Fruit Loops or Palin in a bowl of Grape Nuts?

It’s just all so damned silly, but hey, wouldn’t it be better if the voice said who was going to win the Super Bowl instead?

Anyway, since Robertson won the Ames straw poll for president back in 1987 (yet he strangely did not give “the voice” credit), I was curious as to how such voices are affecting our current crop of presidential wanna-bes.



Michelle Bachmann, who said “the voice” told her to run, finally had someone else advise her to hit the stop button. Rick Perry, who also said “the voice” told him to run, surprised everyone last week when he shouted, “On to New Vermont!”

Most of the Keystone Kop GOP voters ran away from ol’ Newt quicker than snow was melting in the Back Bowls last week, and I’d bet good money he’ll be hearing voices any day now.

And then there is Rick Santorum, who apparently is just another in a long, boring line of one-dimensional, puritanical buffoons who, usually through no doing of their own, light the match of popularity for 15 minutes and then quickly burn out.

His voices told him to announce that the way to guarantee never to live in poverty was to 1) graduate from high school, and 2) get married, but only to a member of the opposite sex. Otherwise you were doomed to a life of food stamps and free health care.

Suffice it to say Santorum has as much chance of replacing Obama as president next November as Rossi Moreau does of replacing Peter Runyon as county commissioner (although I do hope Moreau wins a seat that comes with an electric hat).

I suppose this just means that the kinds of people who listen to voices in their head are the same who believe — and give direct credit to — a group of bought-and-paid-for Native Americans doing a “successful” snow dance on the very same day that snow had been predicted to fall by the National Weather Service for 10 previous days (how do you spell m-a-r-k-e-t-i-n-g-g-i-m-m-i-c-k).

But who would fall for that?

Richard Carnes of Edwards writes weekly. He can be reached at poor@vail.net.


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