Sterling Ambivalence (sterlingnorth) wrote,
Sterling Ambivalence

The President's Mental Health

Dr. Alen Salerian was just on TV a few minutes ago. He was being interview on WUSA 9 News by hosts Mike Buchanan and Andrea Roane. He may be most well known now as the psychiatrist fired from now convicted spy Hanssen's defense team for divulging too much info on Hanssen's mental condition. However, his more important work is that on speculating on the mental condition of former presidents and leaders.

Why he was on the nine o'clock news -- he was advocating that presidents submit themselves to a mental illness checkup. And as I typed that pevious sentence, I had to struggle to control the urge to make a wisecrack at the expense of George W. Bush. It's incredibly difficult, especially since Bush makes it so damn easy. Anyway, current president aside, he laid his case out in a piece yesterday for the Washington Post. Stalin may have outwitted Roosevelt when they and Churchill met to map the post WWII world, because Roosevelt may have been too busy coping with his depression than with the negotiations in Yalta. And all but the most partisan Reagan worshipper concede that he wasn't completely there while he was president.

Now, the fear is that this will prompt trumpt-up attacks on innocent maladies, or even false accusations on mental unfitness -- i.e. politics as usual. This fear has worked in keeping politicians from getting mental health checkups. But it is probably a better idea that the political leaders do make sure that they are fit mentally for office (and if not, get the necessary help) and the public know so they won't be in fear about it. Think of how much better everyone felt after we found that Dick Cheney has a heart. (Sorry Dick. It was either you, or Bush.)
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