My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


A Fool's Tale 

Enter Chief, room attended by several doctors and bystanders already present around one patient

Dr. C: Well, folks, what have we here? I have just a moment to look in before dealing with a pressing case next door.

Dr. Hansen: We have a patient in the throes of a rapidly increasing fever, which is likely to cause massive systemic failure at any moment.

patient: I'm getting better. . . .

Dr. Hansen: No, you're not. You'll be stone dead in a minute.

Dr. Christie: I tend to actually agree with the patient here, Chief. There's very little actual evidence that he's getting warmer at all.

bystander: LIAR!!!

Dr. Chief: And who are you?

bystander: Me? You don't know me? My last movie made $270 million, and I've listened to Dr. Hansen--he's actually a doctor, and he thinks the patient is in grave danger. I'm willing to stake my considerable resources behind supporting that assessment. By the way, it's a little chilly in here--could someone please turn up the heat?

Dr. Hansen: And I have dozens of people--actors, politicians, bureaucrats, and even other doctors--who also believe the way I do about the patient. He must get on a cart and have his entire circulation system overhauled. Sure, it might be painful and very damaging, but he HAS to cool off!

patient: I don't want to go on the cart.

Dr. Hansen: Oh, don't be such a baby.

Dr. Chief: That's pretty impressive. Can somebody show me that actual chart?

Dr. Christie: Certainly. Here it is.

Dr. Chief: [thinking and reading] Hmm. Uh-huh. Very interesting. Dr. Hansen, can you show me why this chart seems to show that the patient's temperature actually has been coming down for several readings now?

"Dr." Albert: If I may, Chief. If you look further into the chart, you'll see that the patient's blood gasses are all wrong, and have been for some time. Such a deviation can only lead to catastrophic temperature increases.

Dr. Chief: But do we have any evidence that that deviation DOES lead to temperature increases?

patient: I think I'll go for a walk.

Albert, bystander and Hansen: You're not fooling anyone, you know.

bystander: We have to ACT! The patient cannot afford to wait!

Dr. Chief: What I'm asking is: have there been previous cases where the gasses and the temperature rise coincided in catastrophic ways?

[all look around sheepishly]

Dr. Christie: There have been such temperature deviations before, but the gasses follow the temperature, not lead it; and we've always survived the warming.

Dr. Hansen: Oh, shut up, Christie. You just don't know anything!

"Dr." Albert: The science has actually been settled on this for like, decades. You're just a stubborn, backwards heretic.

bystander: You have to imagine just how bad it could get for the patient. Boils, rashes . . . body odor. We have to DO something!

Dr. Chief: Christie, do you have anybody else backing you up on this . . .this, "theory" of yours?

Dr. Christie: Yes, as a matter of fact. A list of over 3,000 doctors, specialists, general practitioners . . .all who think the question is, at best, unsettled.

Dr. Chief: But, if we force a treatment on this patient, we could use it to affect every patient everywhere, right?

patient: I feel happy!

Dr. Hansen: Chief, we have to act before the patient--who is clearly delusional already--slips beyond the point of no return.

Dr. Chief: I see your point, Dr. Hansen. And, while I'm open to every argument, I was about to appoint Hansen here to Department Chair and elevate Dr Albert to public relations executive, so I really have to put my faith in them.

Chief, glances around the room furtively, then silences the Body with his a whack of his club.

Dr. Chief: gentleman--I must away. The patient next door is resisting infusions, it's sliding away--I have to go make sure he'll take 3 or 4 units right away.

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