14 August 2007

Invasion of the (Republican) Body Snatchers

Years ago I was driving from Wisconsin back to Minneapolis with a psych major from the University of Minnesota. We were listening to a press conference Q & A of Pres. Reagan. Suddenly the budding young psychologist ticks off three or four characteristics we are hearing in Reagan's speech patterns and says "Those are all indications of ... " and she names some disease of the brain with an odd German sound that I had never heard of. We all know how soon after Reagan left office we heard the news that he had Alzeimers.

So I am fascinated by the changes in personality that some see in both our Prez and Vice Prez. Something clearly has happened, but what? Several people who once worked with Cheney say that they no longer know him. Of course events like 9/11 (and the experience of having to order a civilian airliner to be shot down) can change a persons view of the world and perhaps that is all that happened.

And then there is George II. Ignore the political bias in this little clip and you can still be dumbfounded by the change in his speech patterns and general demeanor. I honestly don't have a clue as to what has happened to the man, but something has, however innocuous. Somedays I make no sense whatsoever, so perhaps it is simply the normal effects of age, but I doubt it (since this has always been true of me, alas). Lingering effects of alcoholism? Something else?

Or are we making too much of this? But it has always been very odd, and a bit disturbing.

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3 Comments:

At 14 August, 2007 23:32, Anonymous Maire said...

Lyme disease has all kinds of strange after-effects, and they can linger for a long, long time...

 
At 15 August, 2007 08:46, Anonymous Maire said...

Here's an op-ed piece in the Guardian about our president's brush with Lyme disease. While the author is really asking hard questions about Bush's medical treatment and the US Health care system, note that symptoms can include:

joint and nerve pain, headaches, cognitive problems, and fatigue

http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/dean_baker_and_helene_jorgensen_/2007/08/bush_and_lyme_disease_whats_th.html

 
At 15 August, 2007 08:49, Blogger Clemens said...

Lyme disease. That might explain it. And it is less pernicious than premature senile dementia or the effects of a stroke, or ... oh well.

Now about Dick Cheney...

 

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