Tuesday, September 17, 2019


Rod Dreher, better known for his obsession with gays, transsexuals, and cuddly neofascist dictators, has branched into medicine with disastrous results:
You might remember the post here about “Moralistic Therapeutic Med School,” in which medical schools are starting to remove or relocate images of white men affiliated with the school who accomplished great things.
Ah, yes, I remember -- it was bullshit.
This is about something related, but much more serious. 
A reader who is a physician sent me this WSJ op-ed column the other day. He said that this is bad news for the medical profession. The author is Stanley Goldfarb, a former administrator at Penn’s medical school. Excerpts:
Goldfarb's brief op-ed, "Take Two Aspirin and Call Me by My Pronouns," is just a series of grump-farts -- he complains, for example, of being "chastised by a faculty member for not including a program on climate change in the course of study" at his med school. Ooooh, how SJW! But Goldfarb's real bugbear is the "educational specialists" he encounters who "emphasize 'social justice' that relates to health care only tangentially" and "focus on eliminating health disparities..."

In case you don't know (and Dr. Golfarb seems to hope you don't), this is something known as population health, to which Goldfarb refers as if it were some ghastly new fad like rainbow parties but which has been around for decades and is studied by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and thousands of scholars and think tanks. It is not something working MDs do instead of treating their patients. Even holy Mike Pence employed a few such experts for his Healthy Indiana Medicaid initiative, from which Seema Verma was promoted to CMS Administrator, in which capacity she often talks about addressing "health disparities." Tell me they're SJWs!

Goldfarb also says that "teaching these issues is coming at the expense of rigorous training in medical science," an outrageous claim for which he offers absolutely zero evidence. Does he really think new doctors don't know how to treat the sick because they spent too much time on "social justice" in school? Doubtful, but I expect he knows some Journal readers will be dumb enough to buy it.

Dreher takes this all at face value, natch:
At some point, reality will take its revenge, and the woke will be banished. But how much suffering will innocent people have to endure before it does? And how many people of faith will be deterred from seeking a medical career because the militant left has placed absurd barriers to keep out the politically incorrect.
Come on, guy, can't you at least find some Young Republican who can claim he was discouraged from attending Johns Hopkins by hippies?

But wait, there's more: Dreher finds a way to connect this paranoid miasma to his transphobia. Instead of hectoring trans folks as usual, though, he tells them (from a hygienic distance) that he understands their plight because he's been there, in a sense:
I have never felt comfortable in my body, though I thought for most of my life this was simply neurosis. No, I have never had the faintest thought of gender dysphoria, but it manifested itself in something feeling … not right. Something hard to define.
To be frank, one reason I drank so much in college — aside from the fact that LSU in the 1980s had a massive binge-drinking culture — was to overcome that sense of not-rightness, so I could talk to girls. The point is, when I read about officially-diagnosed autistic young people seeking sex changes because they say they don’t feel right in their bodies, I get that. I can’t pretend to know about that from a sexualized point of view, but that sense that things aren’t right is quite familiar to me. And it never goes away. You just have to learn how to cope with it. For me, it got better as I grew older.
See, y'all don't need top surgery -- you need time and Jesus! But no, they won't listen -- these transsexuals turn away from their Savior and allow themselves to be "driven by the popular culture and the culture of medicine [!] into asking for life-changing procedures that will not actually cure them..." When Rod takes over as Patriarch of the Popes, them so-called doctors will have to dispense the Blood of the Lamb!

Dreher's materia medica is also invoked in an earlier post:
I’ve done research in the past on the phenomenon of demon possession, and it does seem to be tied closely to intense childhood trauma, especially in the family — sexual trauma in particular. There is something about trauma that cracks the psyche; sometimes, that crack is big enough for evil spirits to come in. It is certainly not the case that everyone who experiences childhood trauma become possessed! (Actual possession is rare.)
Well, there's a relief. I wonder why Doc Dreher just doesn't go the whole hog and start selling nootropics.

UPDATE. Comments are choice on this one, and one guest reminds me of this wonderful bit from Dreher's autobiographical segment:
I’ve come to see, for example, the fact that I have unusual superpowers when it comes to taste and smell to be an advantage. This is why I love food and wine so much: I can experience aromas and flavors more intensely than most people.
It's not gluttony, it's my superpower! I've laughed for two straight minutes imaging Dreher's audition for the Justice League. (For more enjoyment of Dreher's food fetish, see here.)

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