Mischief A Form Of Mental Illness?
By James Donahue
If web rumors are to
be trusted, there is a new bill proposed by Senator Bill Frist that will define “political paranoia” as a mental
The bill would open doors
to anyone suffering from this disorder to receive Medicare reimbursement for psychiatric treatment, according to Hermione
Slatkin, a medical writer for the Swift Report.
Rick Smith, a spokesman
for Senator Frisk’s office, explained the purpose of the bill. “If you’re still convinced that President
Bush won the election because Republicans figured out a way to hack into electronic voting machines, you’ve obviously
got a problem,” he is quoted as saying. “If we can figure out a way to ease your suffering by getting you into
therapy and onto medication, that’s something that we hope the entire 109th Congress will support.”
I have news. I wasn’t
as paranoid before hearing this story as I am now.
There is no worse stigma
on a person in this society than being declared mentally insane. And apparently the Republican Congress is interested in threatening
all Bush dissenters (and I believe there are many) with this very label.
What fool would dare
to turn him or herself in to authorities, or even their personal physician, as a Bush dissenter so as to be found suffering
from political paranoia? The remedy might be a Medicare-paid treatment of a lifetime supply of Paxil, a prescription drug
for the treatment of anxiety and depression.
And if popping a daily
dose of artificial rose colored glasses doesn’t remove your skepticism about the greatness of George W. Bush, then there
is always a government-paid admission to a treatment center. It is said that FEMA has been busy building a number of enclosed
facilities around the country that look a lot like prison or political detention camps. Might they also be used for “preventative
One writer has suggested
that once it is determined that enough people are suffering from political paranoia, the government might take the next
step and declare these people a threat to national security.
This would be license
for the courts to send a lot of Americans off to fill those FEMA camps, if for no other reason than to get them locked up.
No treatment needed then.
If you think I am spouting
off about something that probably isn’t a threat to individual freedom consider this: The characterization of political
dissent as a form of mental illness has long been the hallmark of authoritarian governments. The Chinese call it “political
lunacy.” In Soviet Russia anybody speaking out against the government ended up in mental hospitals.
Scared yet? Well, here
is something else to chew over.
Remember the Bush New
Freedom Initiative? A special commission assigned by the president determined that mental disorders often go undiagnosed in
America and recommended comprehensive mental health screening for everybody.
It was tossed out as
a trial balloon about a year or two ago and didn’t get any support. A lot of us wrote exposure stories about the idea
and nothing more came of it.
Is something more coming?
Does all of this stuff fit together in some strange way? Am I politically paranoid?