Is George mentally ill or just have ADD and dyslexia?
THE EGO HAS LANDED
Bush And Busher: What IS His Problem?According to Matthijs van Boxsel, author of THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF STUPIDITY, "stupidity is not the same as a lack of intelligence...'It's a quality all its own. It's unwitting self-destruction, the ability to act against one's best wishes...It's a typical human talent." Perhaps that begins to explain George W. Bush. As Mark Crispin Miller writes in THE BUSH DYSLEXICON:"Our president is not an imbecile but an operator just as canny as he is hard-hearted--which is to say that he's extraordinarily shrewd....As Bush himself has often said--it suits a politician to have everybody thinking he's a dunce, especially if he wants to do things his way. The satire that sells him short, therefore, can only work to his advantage, by blinding us to his team's big-time plans and causing us to overlook his own prodigious skill at propaganda." (pp.2-3)Miller goes on to write that Bush's "gross illiteracy" is often used as a focal topic to cover his more telling failures: "his neglected military service, his many shady business dealings, or his close ties to the likes of Representative Tom DeLay."But none of this means that Bush is not stupid in van Boxsel's sense: one whose actions appear self-destructive or , to be more specific to Bush's case, one whose actions, both at home and abroad, are, much too often, not in the best interests of our nation. Where does Bush's national self-destructiveness, his willingness to destroy nearly 65 years of national social betterment, come from? Maureen Dowd thinks it's Bush's Attention Deficit Disorder.Just as Bush's illiteracy reflects the illiteracy of the common man, so, too, does Bush's ADD reflect the mental problems inherent in our dysfunctional society. Dowd reminds us that The New Republic "recently dubbed this "historical attention deficit disorder," when a country gets distracted from focusing on any one place for very long. Our scattered consciousness is the reason we're so bad at empire, too impatient to hang around hot climes trying to force cold natives to like us."
Dowd believes that Bush is our ADD model par excellence, pointing out how our foreign policy mirrors symptoms of Attention Deficit Disorder:
*I find my mind wandering from tasks that are uninteresting or difficult*
I say things without thinking and later regret having said them."
*I make quick decisions without thinking enough about their possible bad results*
I have a quick temper, a short fuse*
I have trouble planning in what order to do a series of tasks or activities*
"In group activities it is hard for me to wait my turn."
*I usually work on more than one project at a time, and fail to finish many of them."
While Dowd couches her criticism of Bush in her usual ironic tone, the same point was made without humor during the presidential campaign by Gail Sheehy for Vanity Fair, documenting symptoms of both dyslexia and ADD found in the Bush family. She wasn't alone, as you can see on our BUSH AND DYSLEXIA page. Here's what we wrote in 2000:"It's not just that Bush begins to lose focus earlier than most administrators in high pressure jobs, but his language breaks down and he sometimes becomes incomprehensible. When reporters began writing about his language difficulties after the New Hampshire primaries, excuses were made by both Bush spinners and sympathetic reporters that he only made his language gaffes late in the day. Then it was late in the day and early in the morning. After that it was late in the day, early in the morning, and when under pressure. Then Bush began to schmooze with reporters on his plane and we were given stories that he didn't sleep well on the road and missed the comfort of his Austin bed. All of these explanations are true, but they don't really get to the heart of the matter. Bush appears to be incapable of working long, hard, pressure-filled days, the kind of days common to the presidency, without suffering a loss of attention and an inability to clearly communicate. Can we afford a president who works a six hour day and devotes little of those hours to "studying specific issues or working on executive matters"? Bush may want to do more, but his language and attention problems appear to prevent him from doing more."We don't think the conclusions we arrived at in 2000 are any different than the conclusions we arrive at today, except that Bush has chosen to attempt to work long days under pressure, resulting in the behavior that Dowd has pointed out above. We don't think such self-destructive behavior is in the best interest of our nation. In fact, we think it's stupid.--Jerry Politex, 07.07.03
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Psychoanalyst describes Bush as "paranoid megalomaniac," "untreated alcoholic" Capitol Hill Blue June 14, 2004A new book by a prominent Washington psychoanalyst says President George W. Bush is a "paranoid meglomaniac" as well as a sadist and "untreated alcoholic." The doctor's analysis appears to confirm earlier reports the President may be emotionally unstable.Dr. Justin Frank, writing in Bush on the Couch: Inside the Mind of the President, also says the President has a "lifelong streak of sadism, ranging from childhood pranks (using firecrackers to explode frogs) to insulting journalists, gloating over state executions ... [and] pumping his fist gleefully before the bombing of Baghdad." Even worse, Dr. Frank concludes, the President's years of heavy drinking "may have affected his brain function -- and his decision to quit drinking without the help of a 12-step program [puts] him at far higher risk of relapse." Dr. Frank's revelations comes on the heels of last week's Capitol Hill Blue exclusive that revealed increasing concern by White House aides over Bush's emotional stability. Aides, who spoke only on condition that their names be withheld, told stories of wide mood swings by the President who would go from quoting the Bible one minute to obscenity-filled outbursts the next. Bush shows an inability to grieve -- dating back to age 7, when his sister died. "The family's reaction -- no funeral and no mourning -- set in motion his life-long pattern of turning away from pain [and hiding] behind antic behavior," says Frank, who says Bush may suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.Other findings by Dr. Frank: . His mother, Barbara Bush -- tabbed by some family friends as "the one who instills fear" -- had trouble connecting emotionally with her son, Frank argues.. George H.W. Bush's "emotional and physical absence during his son's youth triggered feelings of both adoration and revenge in George W.". The President suffers from "character pathology," including "grandiosity" and "megalomania" -- viewing himself, America and God as interchangeable. Dr. Frank has been a psychiatrist for 35 years and is director of psychiatry at George Washington University. A Democrat, he once headed the Washington Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility. In an interview with The Washington Post's Richard Leiby, Dr. Frank said he began to be concerned about Bush's behavior in 2002. "I was really very unsettled by him and I started watching everything he did and reading what he wrote, and watching him on videotape. I felt he was disturbed," Dr. Frank told Leiby. Bush, he said, "fits the profile of a former drinker whose alcoholism has been arrested but not treated." Dr. Frank's expert recommendation? "Our sole treatment option -- for his benefit and for ours -- is to remove President Bush from office ... before it is too late." White House spokesman Scott McClellan refused to comment on the specifics of Dr. Frank's book or the earlier story by Capitol Hill Blue. "I don't do book reviews," McClellan said, even though he last week recommended the latest book by the Washington Post's Bob Woodward to reporters at the daily press briefing. Published byCapitol Hill BlueExcerpt from Bush on the Couch: Inside the Mind of the Presidentby Justin A. Frank, M.D.Introduction:"Curious about George"If one of my patients frequently said one thing and did another, I would want to know why. If I found that he often used words that hid their true meaning and affected a persona that obscured the nature of his actions, I would grow more concerned. If he presented an inflexible worldview characterized by an oversimplified distinction between right and wrong, good and evil, allies and enemies, I would question his ability to grasp reality. And if his actions revealed an unacknowledged -- even sadistic -- indifference to human suffering, wrapped in pious claims of compassion, I would worry about the safety of the people whose lives he touched.For the past three years, I have observed with increasing alarm the inconsistencies and denials of such an individual. But he is not one of my patients. He is our president.George W. Bush is a case study in contradiction. All of us have witnessed the affable good humor with which he charms both supporters and detractors; even those of us who disagree with his policies may find him personally likeable. As time goes on, however, the gulf between his personality and those policies -- and the style with which they are executed -- grows ever wider, raising serious questions about his behavior: . How can someone so friendly and playful be the same person who cuts funds from government programs aiding the poor and hungry?. How is it that our deeply religious president feels free to bomb Iraq -- and then celebrate the results with open expressions of joy?. How can a president send American soldiers into combat under false pretenses and then proceed to joke about the deception, finding humor in the absence of weapons of mass destruction under his Oval Office desk?. How can someone promise to protect the environment on the one hand and allow increased arsenic in the public water supply on the other? And why does he feel he can call his plan to lift logging restrictions in national forests the "Healthy" Forest Initiative?. If the president's interpersonal skills are strong enough to earn him the reputation of being a "people person," why is he so unwilling and even unable to talk to world leaders, such as Jacques Chirac or Gerhard Schroeder, who disagree with him?. How can the president sound so confused and yet act so decisively? And given the regularity with which he confuses fact with fantasy, how can he justify decisions based largely on his own personal suspicions with such unwavering certainty? As a citizen, I worry about what these contradictions and inconsistencies say about the president's ability to govern; as a psychoanalyst, I'm troubled by their implications for the president's current and long-term mental health, particularly in light of certain information we know about his past. Naturally, the occasional misstatement or discrepancy between word and deed may be dismissed as politics as usual. But when the most powerful man on the planet consistently exhibits an array of multiple, serious, and untreated symptoms -- any one of which I've seen patients need years to work through -- it's certainly cause for further investigation, if not for outright alarm.President Bush is not my patient, of course, but the discipline of applied psychoanalysis gives us a way to make as much sense of his psyche as he is likely ever to allow. At its simplest level, applied psychoanalysis means the application of psychoanalytic principles to anybody outside one's own consulting room. The tradition of psychoanalyzing public figures dates back almost as far as psychoanalysis itself; Freud based some of his most important theories on his observations of individuals he could never get onto his couch, Moses and Leonardo da Vinci most notable among them.Indeed, if Freud were alive in the second half of the twentieth century, he might well have been recruited to offer his genius in the service of the U.S. intelligence effort. Somewhere in the bowels of the George H. W. Bush Center for Central Intelligence in Langley, Virginia, psychoanalysts are currently reviewing audio recordings, videotapes, and biographical information on dozens of contemporary world leaders, using the principles of applied psychoanalysis to develop detailed profiles for use by the CIA and the U.S. government and military. According to political psychiatrist Jerrold M. Post, M.D., who has chronicled the history of "at-a-distance leader personality assessment in support of policy," the marriage of psychoanalysis and U.S. intelligence dates back to the early 1940s, when the Office of Strategic Services commissioned two studies of Adolf Hitler. The effort was regarded as enough of a success that it was institutionalized in the 1960s, Post writes, first under the aegis of the Psychiatric Staff of the CIA's Office of Medical Services, which "led to the establishment of the Center for the Analysis of Personality and Political Behavior" (CAPPB), which Post founded within the Directorate of Intelligence.As Post reveals, CIA psychological profiles of Anwar Sadat and Menachem Begin played an important role in Jimmy Carter's handling of the 1978 Camp David negotiations. And applied psychoanaly-sis continues to enjoy a privileged place in the intelligence universe."At the time of his confirmation hearings, Secretary of the Defense Donald Rumsfeld identified as his nightmare [the possibility of] not understanding the intentions of dangerous adversaries," Post writes. "Accentuated by some of the recent intelligence ‘surprises,' the need to have a robust applied political psychology capability has been highlighted and increased resources are currently being applied to human intelligence and to the study of the personality and political behavior of foreign leaders, both national leaders and terrorists."A vote of confidence from today's CIA, of course, might be described as a mixed blessing. Nevertheless, applied psychoanalysis remains a vital tool for understanding political leaders. And since one can scarcely imagine Bush Center resources being committed to a Bush son's psychological profile, this must be an independent inquiry, albeit one that is informed by the CAPPB goal as articulated by its founder, Jerrold M. Post: "to understand shaping events that influenced core attitudes, political personality, leadership and political behavior."Published byHarperCollins New information showsBush indecisive,paranoid, delusionalby Teresa Hampton, June 17, 2004The carefully-crafted image of George W. Bush as a bold, decisive leader is cracking under the weight of new revelations that the erratic President is indecisive, moody, paranoid and delusional. “More and more this brings back memories of the Nixon White House,” says retired political science professor George Harleigh, who worked for President Nixon during the second presidential term that ended in resignation under fire. “I haven’t heard any reports of President Bush wondering the halls talking to portraits of dead Presidents but what I have been told is disturbing.” Two weeks ago, Capitol Hill Blue revealed that a growing number of White House aides are concerned about the President’s mental stability. They told harrowing tales of violent mood swings, bouts with paranoia and obscene outbursts from a President who wears his religion on his sleeve. Although supporters of President Bush dismissed the reports as “fantasies from anonymous sources,” a new book by Dr. Justin Frank, director of psychiatry at George Washington University, raises many similar questions about the President’s mental stability. "George W. Bush is a case study in contradiction," Dr. Frank writes in Bush On The Couch: Inside the Mind of the President. "Bush is an untreated ex-alcoholic with paranoid and megalomaniac tendencies." In addition, a new film by documentary filmmaker, and frequent Bush critic, Michael Moore shows the President indecisive and clearly befuddled when he learned about the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. While conservative critics who have not yet seen Fahrenheit 9/11 dismiss the work as an anti-Bush screed, Roger Friedman of the normally pro-Bush Fox News Network has seen the film and calls it “a tribute to patriotism, to the American sense of duty - and at the same time a indictment of stupidity and avarice.” Friedman also says the films “most indelible moment” comes when Bush, speaking to a group of school kids in Florida, is first informed of the 9/11 attacks. “Instead of jumping up and leaving, he instead sat in front of the class, with an unfortunate look of confusion, for nearly 11 minutes,” Friedman says. “Moore obtained the footage from a teacher at the school who videotaped the morning program. There Bush sits, with no access to his advisers, while New York is being viciously attacked. I guarantee you that no one who sees this film forgets this episode.” Dr. Frank says the episode is typical of how Bush deals with death and tragedy. He notes that Bush avoids funerals. “President Bush has not attended a single funeral - other than that of President Reagan. In my book I explore some possible reasons for that, whether or not it is "presidential". I am less interested in judging his behavior on political grounds than I am in thinking about its meaning both to him and to the rest of us,” Dr. Frank says. “He has spent a lifetime of avoiding grief, starting with the death of his sister when he was 7 years old. His parents didn't help him with what must have been confusing and frightening feelings. He also has a history of evading responsibility and perhaps his not attending funerals has to do with not wanting to see the damage his policies have wrought.”