Friday, February 22, 2008

A Must Read For Brain Fans

Image credit: WriterHound at Wikipedia.

Oh, OK, I'm having trouble with titles today. Over at Firedoglake, Dr. Kirk Murphy provides a tutorial on brain trauma:

We all like to think we're special. And we are - we're all unique individuals. So we all believe our brains and even our assholes are special. On the individual level, our brains and assholes are indeed special - and disease that affects my brain (or my asshole) will affect me in a unique and special way. Yet as biological organisms, we humans are pretty similar to one one another. As a species, our brains appear to share the same stucture and function ...

Every politician - even Dan Quayle - has a brain. Senator McCain has a brain, too. And Senator McCain would take his brain along with the rest of him to the Oval Office were he to win election (or 5 votes from the Supremes).

McCain’s Brain - How’s It Doin?

Then he touches on something I've been wondering about, but hadn't mentioned for obvious reasons:

And - sadly - torture can also predispose victims to brain disease. The resulting impairments can take the form of psychiatric disease (especially PTSD), cognitive impairments, or both. The experience of being a POW has - in WWII POW's - also been shown to be associated with neuropsychiatric impairment (although the same study found the difference between POWs and non-POW's from the same combat theatre was realtively small).

McCain’s Brain - How’s It Doin?

I've written about PTSD a time or two, so I certainly had wondered whether there might be some PTSD in McCain's past. I'll just add, for emphasis, that if Kirk Murphy isn't qualified to give a diagnosis about this condition, then I certainly am not. It's possible that he functions at a high enough level that he could manage as President. I'll just say that this gives extra meaning to who ends up being McCain's running mate.

Click on the links and read. It's a fascinating article, dosed with a bit of humor.

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