ME TV has been showing reruns of first years of the tv series MASH, and it was while I was watching them that I realized one of the main reasons Ted Cruz bugs me. He is a real life Frank Burns. I know that it has been almost 40 years since these episodes first aired, but the show has stayed on the air through reruns, so most of you should be familiar with the character.
The only difference in the two men is that Burns was a hypocrite, while Cruz seems to really believe in the things he says, which may be even worse. Both men are super patriots, who flinch at the idea of actually facing combat. They both believe that dissent is the same as treason. They both refuse to compromise. They are both hated by everyone who knows them.
They also believe they are always right and never make mistakes, when the opposite is usually true. In the book, when one of Frank's patients dies, instead of accepting the fact that he may have made a mistake, he blames the death on a mentally challenged orderly. The orderly, who thinks doctors are always right, is distraught at the thought that he has killed someone.
Trapper John, who overhears what Burns tells the orderly, invites him outside, where he proceeds to beat the crap out of him. Of course, Burns doesn't bring Trapper up on charges because he doesn't want anyone to know he lost a fight.
Did I mention that both men were universally hated? You don't just have to take my word for it. Lindsay Graham has said that if you shot Cruz on the floor of the Senate and were tried in the Senate, you would be acquitted. Even so, Graham is supporting Cruz for President. No wonder members of Congress have such low poll numbers.
Cruz and Burns were probably the type of kids in school who took the names of kids who acted up in class while the teacher was out of the room. Then they would stand by the teacher on duty during recess to avoid a beating. Then when it came time for a test, they would have no qualms about cheating.
Both Cruz and Burns claim to be Christians, and in fact, consider themselves morally superior to all around them. In fact, if either of them had been in the Holy Land when Jesus was there, they would have been leading the crowd calling for his death. After all, Jesus didn't care about money. He wanted to help the poor. He hung out with lowlifes. He loved his enemies and protested the government. Neither Cruz or Burns would tolerate someone like that.
So now the Republican Party that once boasted of being the party of Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Rockefeller, Javits, Chuck Percy, and Howard Baker now offers either a loudmouthed bully or a pious, morally fanatic reincarnation of Frank Burns as our next President. Burns at least had one positive quality that makes him less objectionable than Cruz. He isn't real.