Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Dementia: the problem that affects us all

As many may have heard, retired senator Jesse Helms has been suffering from vascular dementia, an illness that can include such symptoms as forgetfulness, delusions, acute confusion, 'wandering', hallucinations, and physical or verbal aggression.

This should come as no surprise, as any astute follower of politics will realize that dementia has always been closely associated with the field of politics. In fact, many will note that Helms appeared to suffer from dementia throughout most of his political career -- which would place him squarely with the majority of Senators and Representatives who also suffer from this bipartisan disorder.

In fact, just as dentists appear to have higher rates of suicide than non-dentists, politicians seem to have much, much, much higher rates of dementia-- percentages that are even higher than those found in psychiatrists (72%) and professional clowns (38%). This contrasts greatly with the percentages found in other groups studied: plumbers (9%), bus drivers (5%) and scientists, of whom only 0.3% can truly be considered "Mad".

Of course, very few citizens in the general population can have failed to recognize the symptoms in the two groups with the highest percentage of sufferers. But the question is truly one of cause and effect: are politics more likely to attract those who suffer from dementia, or does dementia develop over time as a result of prolonged exposure to politics? It is a question that has stymied researchers for years, and they may never find the answer.

But perhaps medication can help.


Anonymous John said...

All I can say for sure L is that Liberalism is a desease. I don't mean to offend anyone, but if you watch what these liberals have done over the years, and watch how they conduct themselves on camera and from day to day, you can only arrive at the conclusion that these people are mad.

And I don't mean angry. Well, that too...

7:36 AM  
Anonymous tim said...

...I don't know if john's post is being sarcastic or not.

9:27 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Jesse Helms has dementia? How can they tell?

6:22 PM  
Blogger L said...

John: well, I've always considered dementia to be a bipartisan disorder myself :)

Tim: I should hope that everyone who visits is sarcastic

Tom Harper: heh heh

9:56 PM  

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