Saturday, March 29, 2014

How do you define smart? Part 5

This is the final installment of our series on the question: how do you define smart. Upon our investigation, we've learned that education does not make you smart, because there are well educated people all over this world who are not smart. Smarts is a perception thing, and how you define it depends on whether you are an idealist or a realist.

Imagine, for a moment, that you knew the truth.  What would you do with it?  You know if you tell people the truth they might get mad.  You know they will because, as the old saying goes, the truth hurts before it makes you better.  Yes, it's true, most people can't handle the truth.

Now, if you don't share the truth, you are an enabler.  I think way too many of us know truths but we don't share them out of fear of causing controversy.  Yep, we are chicken shits afraid to offend people with the truth.

I know there are many respiratory therapists who know bronchodilators don't cure pneumonia, but they don't say anything because they want to keep their jobs; or, as a bottom line, they want to keep the peace.

I know there are many people who know truths (which are answers based on facts, not theories) in politics but they won't speak what they know because they are chickens.

When you know the truth and don't share it that makes you an enabler.  Harboring truths makes us enablers.  We enable people to be stupid, and Lord knows stupidity doesn't make the world better, never has and never will.

You have all sorts of people, some of them nurses, doctors, politicians, or whatever, and they're really smarter than everybody else by not having firm opinions on things.  They say they are independents, centrists, and moderates, and they do this so they can keep the peace.

They don't care that your breathing treatments are a waste of time, and it's not even worth investigating if they are.  What they care about is that it feels good to give one; it makes money for the hospital; it makes them feel like they are doing something good.

I'm open-minded and so are you.  We study both sides of the issues, and then we make informed decisions. If you're like me in this arena, you are one of the biggest dupes, because you are sitting around judging both sides while one of them is lying through their teeth with everything they say to you.

Idealists lie because they know there is no proof to what they are proposing. These are the people who believe every feel good theory ever created.  And it's is not new, because it was started sometime around 400 B.C. with the philosophies of the ancient Greeks.  They sought answers, and when they didn't find them they created their own answers which they called theories.

Just think, for over 2,000 years a theory raged in the medical community that asthma was a nervous disorder.  There were many physicians along the way who challenged this theory, but they were ridiculed, harassed, and laughed right out of the medical community.

There is the history of stupid bronchodilator orders that's for sure, but there is no solid evidence, only theories, that they do any good for anything but asthma.

You'll even see insurance companies allowing breathing treatments to meet admission criteria because some doctor said this is what will help them get better quicker, but never any evidence of this provided.

The even sadder part is, I hear people talking about this all the time, but they never bring it up to people that matter because they are afraid of causing controversy that might cost them their jobs.  When they do come out into the open, they are called "complainers," and you are told just to "stay away from the complainers."

The powers that be say: "If a doctor orders it, it's needed.  If a doctor orders a breathing treatment, it's needed."

Evidence?  Who needs evidence when we have feel good theories?

Bronchodilators are but a small thing and a safe thing thankfully. But what if an idealist theory has the potential to destroy the economy?  What if it has the potential to destroy the medical profession?

Yet when you challenge these idealists on their Utopian views, that's when it gets real interesting. Yet when you consider the cost of all the needless bronchodilators given daily, and the costs of employing RTs to dole them out, you'll realize how deep, complicated, and puzzling this really gets.

So I have to consider these things very seriously, the nature of the evidence, the seriousness of the charge that bronchodilators cure everything from rickets to pneumonia.  Idealists are saying we really are saving lives with Albuterol and so forth.

Some politicians say we are saving the planet by educating people about global warming, which, by the way, is just a theory, a guess.  Surely we should respect our planet, but we shouldn't risk making changes many fear will destroy the economy based on a theory.  Why?  Because the theory might be wrong.

Many people look at people like me and you as being realists. And they link realism with being judgemental, which is true. If that's the case, I am more than happy to judge.  I'm more than happy to call piss piss when that's what it is.

So, to come full circle: what is smart? Well, I'm going to tell you. Anyone with an average brain can see idealism. We know what it is doing to the planet. We know what it is doing to the health care industry. We know what it is doing to the economy with it's regulations and taxes and government programs to create their ideal world.

We know what it is doing to the lungs (Well, nothing if you consider bronchodilators for pneumonia and CHF and rheumatoid arthritis and rickets are a waste of time.)  But it's costing hospitals millions of dollars each year that could be spent on more important things, like raises for us RTs.

All you have to do is look at Detroit and California to see where idealism will take you. All you have to do is look at all the failing nations. Look at the old Soviet Union. Look at Cuba.

Look at France for crying out loud.  Creditors decided France bonds are junk bonds long ago, and no one will loan that country any more money because it has no credibility.

Sure idealists have good intentions, but good intentions and sound economics don't always jibe.

All you have to do is look at what is going on in Washington. All you have to do is look at all the people who are scared because the people in Washington want us to be scared. All you have to do is look at your own emergency room at all the people who really don't need to be there, who are complaining because you aren't taking care of them in a timely manner. All you have to do is look at all the people who are complaining because they aren't getting enough time off work, or aren't getting enough benefits, when what they should be doing is the job the were hired to do.

That's where idealism has taken us. That's what happens when we all become sheep and never think and never question and never judge. Everywhere idealism has taken you you'll see real disaster.  Just look at what they did with healthcare.

Sure it looks good that 7 million signed up, but how many of that seven million were people who were forced out of their own healthcare plans because of Obamacare?  As a perfect example of this look at Maryland, where 60,000 people signed up for Obamacere, but 73,000 lost their health insurance plans because of Obamacare.

That's idealism. It's all with the intent of creating equality for everyone, but it results in inequality. It'a all about creating what they think will be a Utopia, a perfect world, but their attempts to create it make everything they touch worse. Why?  Because there is no evidence their theories will work. 

And of course they do it all with good intentions.

I think, if we were real smart as a nation, we'd listen to the people like you and me at the bottom of the ladder, the people who actually see what is going on, the people with average brains and average educations, to get ideas for real reform.

I know I'm right because I know who these idealists are. They will not look at it ideologically, and the only way they're going to be able to solve our problems is if they ask, "What are we doing here?", "Is this really science that we're dealing with?"

The only way they are going to be able to solve our problems is to think, "Hey,the numbers don't make sense," "It's a total waste of time here. I don't see the point in doing all this if the numbers are so far off."

Because if they asked these questions, they'd realize how humorous all their bronchodilator fallacies are. They'd realize our U.S. health care system really is the best in the world as is (or it was before they screwed with it). They would realize that all these taxes and regulations are are ruining the economy, and not creating anything close to a Utopea.

Yet they won't ask these questions. They'll continue to believe in their idealist theories and they will continue to bog down the medical system with waste

Our scientists are supposed to be the smartest, most open minded people in the world.  A scientist, therefore, should not take the idealistic route because that would pollute science.

Yet we see that all the time too. Look at the global warming for one example. I'm neither a believer nor a disbeliever in the global warming theory, yet you have those who support it -- even scientists, willing to do anything to show it is real -- even lie and twist facts.

Instead, what scientists should be doing is, if global warming is real, let the facts and stats speak for themselves. But since they are so enshrined in idealism instead of realism, they don't care about facts.

So you can see why it's so easy for politicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, teachers, and even doctors and scientists to become rapt in idealism.

But I'm just telling you, folks, the only way to understand this with certitude, with confidence, and then to be able to explain it to others is to understand what being a realist means, and what being an idealist, means. Once you understand that, it is so easy, because all you have to know is that everything idealists say -- I know this sounds extreme -- everything they say is a lie. That's basically it. Once you come to accept that, then the rest is easy.

Idealists will tell you world peace is possible, while idealists know it's not.

Idealists believe if we get rid of all our nuclear weapons all the bad guys will all of a sudden go away and the world will be at peace. They believe the only way to peace is by disarming.  A realist will look into the past and see that there was war way before nuclear weapons were discovered, and the only way to peace is through strength.

Idealists will tell you that if you raise taxes high enough you will be able to afford enough government programs to help all the needy and to get rid of all the poor. They really believe some day world poverty will end if we stick to idealist programs. The realist knows this is impossible.

Idealists think there is only so much money to go around, so if a rich person, or a rich country, is hoarding all the money, then everyone else will suffer.  They believe such people, such nations, are selfish.  They think such people, such nations, don't know how to spend their money wisely.  So they create programs to take it from them and spend it the way they, as idealists, think it should be spent based on their idealist theories.  They take fro those who work hard to earn it, and give it to every one else.

A realist will look at the facts and know that there is enough money in the pie so that every person can enjoy a slice of it, if they are willing to make an effort to get off the cough, to relocate if necessary, to educate themselves, and get the job that pays.  Any of us can do this, but most of us don't have the energy to do it. 

An idealist will look at the rich as bullies, as greedy people who take advantage of the poor and middle class to fill their pockets with money.  An idealist holds up the rich as a symbol of what is possible only in America, and instead of trashing those who achieve and create the jobs for everyone else, they teach everyone else how they too can gain a piece of the pie; how they can become rich.

Idealists think American Exceptionalism means that we think we are better than everyone else, so we need to apologize to the rest of the world.  Realists know that for 99% of human history only the ten percent who were in the social elite were allowed to obtain an education and to improve their lot in life, and America gave every man and woman this opportunity.  Realists know that American Exceptionalism means that only in America is every person born free with an equal opportunity to get a piece of the pie.

Idealists will tell you bronchodilators work for all that wheezes, or for all annoying lung sounds, or for all lung diseases. The realist at the bedside giving the treatment sees the truth, that such treatments, when not ordered for asthma, do nothing but absorb time, money, and energy.  Realists see that we are wasting our time here.

Once you realize idealists are lying, then it all makes sense.

Once you know that everything doctors and nurses who think bronchodilators cure everything is a lie, the rest is easy. It's easy to understand.

You might not want to accept that, might be too tough. "Oh, my gosh, I don't want to think half the doctors and nurses are lying." Well, think about it, they're either lying, or they are simply flat out ignorant. Those are the only options.

If idealists continue to run the healthcare system it will not get better, it will continue to get worse.  Of course if we continue to be enablers, holding back the truth as to not offend people, it won't get better either.  If we continue to be enablers, none of the facts we learn will ever matter.

The same thing is true of our nation.  I love our country and it's for this reason I want to learn as much as I can about it.  Yet, at the same time, it's frustrating to know that the same people who are lying to me are calling me the liar when I have the facts on my side.

So, what is smart?  Well, it depends on whether or not you are an idealist or a realist. If you are an idealist, you are smart if you believe in theories.  If you are an idealist, only the facts matter.