Are you a victim of BDD?

The truth is out there

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Photo Illustration by Carey Wilson

Freelance writer Jaime O’Neill is a frequent contributor to CN&R.

As the approval ratings of George W. Bush and company continue to slide like slime on chrome, it’s getting more and more difficult to find people willing to admit they ever supported the man. Republican politicians are running in all directions trying to disassociate themselves from the president, and pundits who were, just a few months ago, crowing about how likeable Bush is are now joining the howling packs of critics who have, all along, seen the pattern of lies and manipulations that have created the mess the nation is in.

Maybe they’re just rats doing what rats do when a ship starts to sink, or perhaps—and medical science supports this hypothesis—they have a disorder that is now in remission. Whatever the case, the situation has grown so bad that even Laura Bush will, if asked before she’s had a chance to arrange her talking points, admit to being dubious about her husband’s performance, even in the political arena.

Aside from the multibillionaires and the remaining evangelical Christians who form his base, Bush supporters are reaching the status of an endangered species, of which there are many more than there used to be, thanks to Bush administration environmental policies.

To be sure, there are still Bush supporters who are neither billionaires nor Christian fundamentalists, and it’s those people who suffer the most from the ailment now known to science as Bush Diehard Disorder (BDD).

BDD is difficult to diagnose, but its symptoms cause great suffering for those stricken, and additional suffering is inflicted on people throughout the world who don’t suffer the disease, but nonetheless groan under the yoke of Bush misrule. BDD sufferers eschew “reality-based thinking,” and that symptom in and of itself compounds their confusion and confounds attempts to help them. So, in an attempt to bring relief to those people who have not yet been able to identify the symptoms of BDD, the following diagnostic tool is offered as a public service.

Answer the following set of true/ false questions to the best of your ability.

a. The question “Is our children learning?” was a great way to kick off a national commitment to educational reform. True ______False ______

b. George W. Bush looked truly heroic and dashing in his flight suit on the day he announced “Mission Accomplished” in Iraq. True ______False ______

c. The absence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was an honest mistake innocently made, and besides, Democrats believed it, too. True ______False ______

d. When the president says he won’t bother seeing Al Gore’s documentary on global warming, he’s merely being steadfast in his beliefs. True ______False ______

e. It’s best to put people in cabinet posts who once worked as executives in the industries those posts are meant to monitor. True ______False ______

f. Nearly all the problems we are now dealing with can be traced to the Clinton administration anyway. True ______False ______

g. The word “nuclear” is pronounced “nucular,” and the name of that prison in Iraq is pronounced “Aboo gerrrrub.” True ______False ______

h. Any criticism of George W. Bush, stated or implied, discourages our brave soldiers and gives aid and comfort to terrorists. True ______False ______

i. Dick Cheney suffers from heart trouble because he’s such a big-hearted man that his excessive compassion put undue stress on that organ. True ______False ______

j. The wealthiest 1 percent deserve additional tax breaks because their entrepreneurial spirit is what creates all the wealth in the first place. True ______False ______

k. Donald Rumsfeld is taller than he looks in photographs. True ______False ______

l. George W. Bush attends no military funerals because he wouldn’t want the enemy to think he is daunted by casualties. True ______False ______

m. The solution to America’s energy needs is to push back the environmentalists and allow drilling in Alaskan wildlife preserves. True ______False ______

n. President Bush never met with lobbyist Jack Abramhoff and he barely knew former Enron CEO Ken Lay. True ______False ______

o. For “fair and balanced” news coverage, Fox News is the only option. True ______False ______

p. If you aren’t a terrorist, you have no reason to worry about the U.S. government tapping your phone. True ______False ______

q. George W. Bush earned his degrees from Yale and Harvard based solely on hard work, honest effort and intellectual prowess. True ______False ______

r. Dick Cheney was right all those months ago when he said the Iraq insurgency was “in its last throes.” True ______False ______

s. The best preparation for the presidency is to party until you’re 40 so you’ve got all that out of your system when it’s time to become the decider-in-chief. True ______False ______

t. When Barbara Bush said that Hurricane Katrina worked out pretty well for the poor people of New Orleans, she was once again demonstrating her concern for the less fortunate. True ______False ______

u. No-bid contracts for certain favored companies actually save the taxpayers’ money because those tried-and-true contractors can get right to work without the time-consuming delays of sorting out competitive bids. True ______False ______

v. When George W. Bush told a German interviewer that his best moment as president was the day he caught a 7.5 lb. fish on his ranch in Texas, he was just being modest. True ______False ______

w. There’s a pretty good chance that Darwin’s theory of evolution is, like fears of global warming, based on “junk science.” True ______False ______

x. When George W. Bush recently told an interviewer, “The interesting thing about him (George Washington) is that I read three — three or four books about him last year. Isn’t that interesting?” he was merely pointing out his voracious reading habits. True ______False ______

y. On 9/11, when the president sat in a Florida classroom for a full seven minutes after being told the nation was under attack, he was exhibiting great presence of mind and true grace under pressure. True ______False ______

z. Harriet Miers, short-term Supreme Court nominee, was thoroughly wise and perceptive when she said that George W. Bush was the smartest man she’d ever met. True ______False ______

If you answered “true” to any of these questions, then it is virtually certain you suffer from BDD. Unfortunately, for those people who are this far gone at this late date, no cure seems likely or conceivable.