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PCIntern

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Philly
Home country: USA!USA!USA!
Current location: Jersey Shore
Member since: Sun Feb 22, 2004, 08:01 AM
Number of posts: 21,978

Journal Archives

It's like a horrifyingly bad joke:

You know one or two - you don’t tell it/them even to your friends because they are so utterly tasteless that you would forever be remembered as the person who told it. (I’ll send the punch lines of a couple if you PM me and you can search on the web for the rest of the joke).

This variant is troublesome in several regards: honest physicians and scientists are sounding the warning bells, except this time it seems that industry and politicians of certain stripes are ready with their denials and almost worse, minimizations of the new risks.

When I first heard about COVID-19 the thing which set off alarm bells was the ease of transmissibility coupled with the general genetics of this particular virus. I recall certain members here recalling my fear concerning Ebola and trivialized my response to the new entity. These viruses easily mutate and with a transmissibility much greater than average, it develops in many more Petri dishes, a.k.a. Humans, than it might otherwise and thus have more opportunity to mutate into a form resistant to treatment. It’s Evolution 101. What’s more, the simplest explanation usually suffices.

This new development is not OK or run of the mill, It’s a quantum leap. I hope and pray that we do this better this time but I’m not terribly optimistic but that’s my nature. The advantage of being that way in this society is that I’m often correct and unsurprised.

OMFG... Breakfast today...

I decided to take myself to a nice South Jersey diner this morning for breakfast. Sitting in a room near two older gentlemen, at first they were just shouting at each other about the quality of the food in various places they had eaten. That got on my nerves enough, but I understand if people are hard of hearing and I have to make allowances.

However, the subject just turned to politics quickly. These two right wingers touched on every single Fox News topic imaginable. It was like a reprise of everything we have discussed here on DU that has appeared on Fox News including but not limited to what Obama did on the first day of his presidency all those years ago.

I will spare you all the details, but it was so horrible that I was tempted, although I did not do this, of standing up getting ready to pay my check and asking them where I could buy the white sheets and hoods. It was one of those repulsive Situations I found myself in a long time and could not wait to get out of there. It’s really a shame because the food was delicious and I could not savor it because I was so wrapped up in the horrific nature of their discussions.

Thank you for allowing me to vent!

Ok...so the suspect in the Atlanta Airport was defending himself

against the gubmint TSA, right? It could happen to anybody…

Meanwhile, am I the only person who is skeptical of the use of the word “accidental”? WTAF does that mean when the situation was that he was trying to keep it in his luggage, lunged for it, and took off. Is it a Kyle Rittenhouse defense?

This POS Gosar is a dentist...

This really sucks. Do you know who the three most famous dentists are in the history of the United States?

Doc Holliday, Zane Grey, and Paul Gosar.

I am good and goddamn sick and tired of us being not only the butt of jokes but relegated to inconsequential Status routinely.

On an interesting note: both Zane Grey and Doc Holiday graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, my alma mater. When they had the centennial celebration of the school, their photos were the ONLY on the main poster board in the lobby of the dental school. Even more interestingly, I recalled an early lecture back in the mid 70s when we were told that the only way a dentist could ever win the Nobel prize in medicine is if he or she developed a way to grow bone. Well in fact we did do that and there ain’t no Nobel prize awarded.

I was asked to contribute to an article recently by a major publication and I insisted that it not begin with any stupid remarks about dentists such as those involving pain or Overcharging patients or being a sadist and/or serial killer. The author of the article rejected that and I basically hung up on him. He called me back and said we were disconnected and I said you bet we were I’m tired of this and it’s trite in any event.

The thrust of my contribution was that the profession is being taken over by conglomerates who are in the business of sales of expensive products and treatment and disappearing quickly is the relationship and the great gray area of clinical judgment. He wasn’t interested in that and that was the end of that. Fuck ‘em.

A short story of true fact:

I alluded to this story in a post some months ago. I thought for general interest I would flesh it out a bit.

For many years I had this couple as patients. She is now the sole survivor and is now rudderless because he died I believe about three years ago. He had served in the United States Army and had reached a very high rank and was in fact commander of a base, which one I will not say because I want to preserve anonymity of the individuals about whom I am writing. To say that he was a militant right winger is a gross understatement and she was a devout follower of Rush Limbaugh, But she had to keep it quiet because her husband felt that Limbaugh was too moderate. You are probably beginning to get the idea.

Now the reason, the REASON, i’m telling the story now will become apparent in a few sentences. When the husband died of cancer, one of the promises the wife made to him was that she would carry on the battle for this heart and soul of America. Of course, I have no idea what this really means to these people, but a very interesting thing occurred in December. I saw the widow in my office for a routine check up and she asked me if I would like to join her for a ride down to Washington on January 6. Now for many years before she was married to this gentleman, who by the way was living at his base very far away, she used to stalk me and follow me around Center city Philadelphia . If I went to four stores I would “Run into her” in two of them at least. In all fairness to her she did stop this behavior when I got married in the late 80s but she was one of those women who when she talks to you stares into your eyes and does not blink. The word for my reaction to her behaviors in those days was “disconcerting” and I felt I needed to wash my hands and face after an interaction with her.

Of course, I said no thank you to her invitation, and she said to me, and I am nearly quoting her verbatim but not quite, that “there is going to be a revolution in this country and the first shots are going to be fired on that day. I don’t want to go alone because I am afraid that the people who are putting Biden in the office i’m going to kidnap us and kill us in the same way that the people who were in the real plane that was hidden before the missile that was supposed to be the plane hit the Pentagon were exterminated.“

I’m pretty good at dealing with lunacy, I have to do it at least once or twice a day in my job, and so I affirmed her stance, nodded my head and said unfortunately I will have to be working that day and I am already booked. Actually that was a lie, I am off on Wednesdays and was therefore able to watch it all happened live on television safely ensconced in my home. After the incident, when I saw her next, she said I didn’t go but I wish I had because if they were more of Us there, we would have taken the capital and held it until the election was reversed. (For some reason she always thought that I was a fellow traveler)

I said to her at that time, I don’t know what to say to you…. I really find it uncomfortable participating in seditious takeover‘s of the federal government. I really think you need to separate yourself from these beliefs that you have adopted and consider that the only plot ongoing is the plot of your favorite soon to be ex president Donald Trump to become President-for-life. She did not take this very well as you can imagine but she literally petted my face and said I feel so sorry if someone like you has been taken in and I hope you eventually see the truth and the light.

Jesus H Christ….

I have since seen her, and she does not mention in the conversation or that day but I am certain that she possesses the same beliefs. My point of relating this is that there were people around and many of them felt that they were on a holy mission to seize the government. This woman was aware of the timing, the purpose, and the tactics well before the event occurred. I don’t know what kind of connections she has to any inner circle, it is quite possible that she does given the rank of her now deceased husband, but I will tell you that if the vast number of people Who populate Democratic Underground met her, say at the grocery store, and just had a casual conversation about the price of lettuce or whatever, you would find her interesting, bright, attractive, friendly, engaging, and alert to her surroundings. She dresses impeccably makes up her face and has her hair done most appropriately, wears clothes befitting a woman of her age and station, But the inability of her mind to divorce herself from these unrealities and the difference and respect she has for this miscreant who used to be president is staggering in context with everything else. It just goes to show that something was being planned, many people knew in advance, and they in fact walk among us unscathed.

Just an observation early this morning:

I am sitting in the parking lot of the shopping center in which my part-time job as a dentist is located, and the one thing common to virtually every store, small restaurant, and franchise is that there is a “help wanted” sign or a “now hiring” sign in the window. All of my patients who are in management tell me that they can’t get anyone to work in decent reasonably high paying quality jobs which used to be coveted. I am puzzled by the psychology of all this, given that if I recall correctly the last federal unemployment checks were sent out in August or September and I don’t know what these people are living on. I for one who came from a very progressive, liberal, humanistic family was told that I had best better work every day of my life and there was no Such thing as time off to find myself or to explore my consciousness.

When I say I don’t understand, that’s a rhetorical statement. I personally think this is bad decision making on the part of what I suppose are millions of people. Just an observation…

This is a true story and emblematic of today's America:

A few weeks ago I and a group of 300 other people were invited to Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Philadelphia Eagles. It was a mixed group with regard to age, education, and social status. I will say at the outset that the hosts could not have been more congenial, instructive, hospitable, and downright pleasant. This was a corporate event and we were treated as such in the American spirit.

We were given an extensive tour of the facility, commencing with the Eagles locker room. The tour guide was skilled, informative, and very persuasive in his delivery. I say this because of what happened next: he specifically stated that there was a large Philadelphia Eagles emblem in the center of the room and please please please no one step on it because it is considered bad luck for the team. He made no other entreaties, did not tell people that they could not take pictures, talk, pose in front of lockers, or any other restrictions. He must’ve reiterated not to step on the emblem three or four times very distinctly.

They then open the doors and allowed our group of about 40 to enter and as God is my witness,no fewer than four people walked over to the emblem and stepped directly on it. The tour guide, extremely frustrated, raised his voice slightly, only slightly, and asked the people to please get off the emblem. They all look down and said “Oh!“ as if in surprise. I was at that moment of about five or six feet from the guide and I looked at him and I said “It is unbelievable!”. He replied that every day is like second grade all over again.

I related this story because we make assumptions that people listen, logically follow directions, think of cause-and-effect, understand consequences, and are rational. In the sample, a full 10% of the group was unable to take direction when presented simply and directly with no time lapse in between the instructions and execution. All of these people are, most likely, average or above average in intelligence as we measure it. It wasn’t like a wet paint sign or hot stove challenge, it was explicit directions from an individual in charge.

So therefore, how can we assume that political If/then propositions makes sense to people? We cannot inasmuch as the assumption that the population makes rational decisions based upon possible outcomes is fundamentally false. This is why and how the powers that be have managed to do what they have managed to do over the centuries. They know us much better than we do. And I believe that it partially at the very least explains the popularity of our former president amongst all manner of individuals. It is not a rational or thoughtful thing for many many people, it is a visceral, instinctive, gut reaction which stimulates their inner core of anger, hatred, and bigotry. It is a sad, sad realization.

I am now off to work at 5:20 AM to do my duty to this civilization.

The rest of us need to face something:

All these establishment conservatives who are in positions of power and/or are elected are fully aware of climate change, the horrors of poverty and disease, deleterious effects of poor education upon civilization, the penalty which humanity pays for ignorance and backwardness, and they just don’t care. Weirdly, perhaps Bush Junior said it best when he stated, and I’m paraphrasing, in the end we will all be dead. It is irrelevant to these people what happens in the future because they won’t be here, and it’s all about the here and now. They’ll let their children and grandchildren and great grandchildren deal with whatever they have to deal with the way they had to deal with whatever they had to deal with. Yes, it is throwing in the towel in a certain sense, but apparently The majority thinks some of the time or all of the time that this is the case. How you can have swing States where in one year you vote against a fascist tyrannical individual like Trump and the next year vote his buddyroo into the highest executive office in the state/commonwealth is explained by the above.

It’s not that I’m giving up, or saying that this is how it has to be, but it is important for us to recognize that there is a majority of the electorate truly doesn’t give a shit about the long term. The genius of the Republican messaging is that it never takes a long view: it deals with the immediate here and now. Whereas we strive to improve longitudinally civil rights for all individuals, which takes generations upon generations to effect, they come out with Short term immediate goals such as the cessation of “teaching of critical race theory”, which is a manufactured issue. But you know what, they created this issue out of thin air and it became accepted debate material and took over the conversation. Then later, they pretended it doesn’t even exist and will not acknowledge that it was their issue. I knew we were in trouble in the 70s when the whole Watergate scandal disappeared for the election of 1976 and the Democrats barely won the presidency. If the parties were reversed and the Democrats had been perpetrating a scandal of Watergate proportions, they would have lost the White House in a landslide, rivaling Reagan’s second election. Quite frankly, I don’t see this country surviving For another 50 years at this rate in the form in which it is presently constituted.

Of course, the powers that be of the RW movement think long term and have done so since 1932 when they knew that they would have to spend generations undermining the progress that Roosevelt made in saving the country from revolution. There is a race on between the diversification of the United States population and the repression of the steadily dwindling percentage of “landed gentry” which is what these people have been convinced that they are. Wotta load.

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