A. Sprecace M.D.,
J.D., F.A.C.P. and Allergy
Associates of New
RESPONSE...Daily Commentary on News of the Day
This is a new section.
It will offer
fresh, quick reactions by myself to news and events of the day, day by
day, in this rapid-fire world of ours. Of course, as in military
campaigns, a rapid response in one direction may occasionally have to
be followed by a "strategic withdrawal" in another direction. Charge
that to "the fog of war", and to the necessary flexibility any mental
or military campaign must maintain to be effective. But the mission
will always be the same: common sense, based upon facts and "real
politick", supported by a visceral sense of Justice and a commitment to
be pro-active. That's all I promise.
Click dates below
for past Rapid Responses
SUNDAY, February 16,
2020IF YOU READ NOTHING ELSE THIS MONTH,
read: "The Urgent Need For A United States Space Force", by Steven L. Kwast, (in Imprimis, January 2020, hillsdale.edu).
is yet another example of the status quo / self-serving Swamp that
President Trump set out to drain nearly four years ago. Only this time
it involves our Department of Defense. As the author points out, we've
been here before - in the official military attitude in the 1920's
towards planes and tanks in warfare. That resulted in America nearly
losing WW ll - and definitely losing too many of our men.
Read it. Then get Angry and Mobilized.
SATURDAY, February 15,
2020AN "OUT-OF-MIND EXPERIENCE".
was recently reminded of a nearly out-of-mind experience I had during
psychiatry training as a senior medical student in New York City.
was always of the essence. Among my many pending tasks, I was assigned
to do a complete work-up on a paranoid schizophrenic patient at Kings
County Hospital, a task that could take up to three hours and two or
more trips to the hospital. And this was long before the effective
medical treatments available since then for these patients.
decided to this this in one swell foop. For over two hours I sat
listening to and probing the ruminations and hallucinations of this
middle aged man.
That was almost an out-of-mind experience for me: for a short time thereafter I could not get my thinking straight. Never Again!
Well, almost never. Please read the quite long article and interview entitled:
"Who Is The Ruthless Cabal Willing To Do Anything To Stop Bernie Sanders?" (www.teaparty247.org).
This is the weird world in which the Left live. But I warn you: you might not want to do it in one sitting.
WEDNESDAY through FRIDAY, February 12 through 14,
JUST SO YOU KNOW....
"WHO'S ON FIRST. WHAT'S ON SECOND....?
As I try to keep up with this stage of the 2020 presidential election activities, that's the best I can do...almost.
But let's try.
Trump's national approval ratings continue to rise, largely because he
is accomplishing the actions he promised to take in 2016. What a
Then there is this: "Are You Entertained By President Trump?"(by Lee Elci, in The Day, Feb. 12, 2020).
Then there is "Trump's Smart Play for African-Americans"
(by Jason L. Riley, in WSJ Feb. 12, 2020, Opinion, pA17): not only
smart for Trump, but also a gift to that hypnotized and man-handled
And then come the Democrats - certainly not the Party of
which I was a member for 30 years until 1990 - and for which I served
three times in elected public office. The Democrats of today have
largely lost their way, thanks to the fevered and even insane
activities and demands of the Leftists...of whom liberal but reasonable
Democrats are terrified.
That was evident when Speaker Pelosi was
stupid and intimidated enough to proceed to Impeachment despite the
losing cards in her hands.
And that is evident now in the
candidate / wannabees they have fielded: all Leftists or Leftist
impersonators - including Klobuchar and the former small town mayor
with the difficult name. Just look at their positions.
Or just read the anguished cries of James Carville, that colorful and very savvy Democratic political consultant:
"Notable and Quotable: Cajun Is Ragin'" (in WSJ Feb. 10, 2020, Opinion, pA19.
opinion right now: if you Democrats are hoping for Joe Biden or Mike
Bloomberg, you're betting on the wrong horse. Reasonable Democrats are
too intimidated for that. They will pick a Leftist - and they will lose
TUESDAY, February 11,
See: Ransomware Attacks Grow, Crippling Cities and Businesses,
by Nathaniel Popper ( in NYTimes Feb. 10, 2020).
IN THIS AGE OF POPES AS SUPERSTARS,
we should not forget Pope Pius Xll, who carried and protected both the Church and the Jewish community in Italy through WW ll.
For decades this good man was subjected to calumny from many uninformed sources.
That period was recently brought to recollection by an article about
Robert Graham, S.J. in Columbia, the publication of the Knights of
Columbus (February 2020, p15). It was he with whom my wife Therese
communicated and whom she met at a seminar in Maryland in the course of
writing her monograph in 1989:
"POLAND AND THE CATHOLIC CHURCH DURING THE NAZI DOMINATION".
monograph In Toto and many other relevant references can be found on my
website (asthma.drsprecace.com) within the Section entitled:
"Just the facts, Ma'am; just the facts".
This is in reply regarding the article entitled:
"New Year's Resolutions For Concerned Catholics: A Few Suggestions", by George Weigel (in the January 16, 2020 publication of Catholic New York).
If there was ever an example of "bringing a knife to a gunfight", this is it.
The predicted trials for the Church are accurate but incomplete.
The proposed responses are laudable but totally inadequate.
Church will survive all of this - as it survived the heresies of the
early Church and the egregious sins of many Popes in the Middle Ages,
the excesses of the Inquisition, its more recent suffocation of Pope
John XXlll' "Aggiornamento" aborning, and the Clergy sex scandals.
But it will be a truncated vestige of its past and proper self - and a failure to its Laity and Clergy.
am certainly not a theologian. I am just a life-long faithful and
thinking Catholic. I am open to being corrected and convinced by
appropriate and knowledgeable authority. I certainly do not want to
But this I believe at this time as necessary for the
Church to restore its necessary authority and guidance for its many
disaffected present and former followers.
There is nothing wrong and morally prohibited regarding:
1) Married Priesthood...and Women as Priests;
2) Recognizing Homosexuality as a biologic fact for some, from conception;
3) The "Unitive Function of Sex" as a disastrous misreading of God's plan
for man and woman in marriage;
Non-Abortive Contraception as a legitimate decision between a committed
married couple who are open to bearing and raising offspring;
5) Abortion as Always wrong, except when absolutely necessary to save the Life of the mother;
6) Denying all pro-abortion "Catholics" access to Holy Communion;
7) Allowing divorced Catholics who took that action thoughtfully and necessarily a path to full return to the Church.
and open discussion of these issues and opportunities, with full
participation by the Laity - the Body of the Church - would go very far
to restoring Catholics' interest and participation in a now -
vestigial Church which is in the middle of an actual although
denied schism...and whose Authority is either seriously questioned - or
In all of this, I pray for guidance from God: for myself and for the Magisterium.
MONDAY, February 10,
2020"CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?"
"Internet Security" is an Oxymoron.
long can the big tech companies keep up their charade before
individuals and nations pull the plug on them and insist on developing
a new "www", this time beginning with SECURITY rather than "Open
Source", as this one was created?
Not long, and maybe even before a nation's electrical grid is totally compromised.
SUNDAY, February 9,
NOW THAT WOULD BE "A CANDLE WORTH THE LIGHT"!
THE "ANTI-VAX MOVEMENT", IN ALL OF ITS MANIFESTATIONS,
is much more dangerous than events like Zika and Coronavirus.
WAKE UP. AMERICA.
FRIDAY and SATURDAY, February 7 and 8,
THE BEST HUMOR IS TRUE LIFE.
HERE IS A LESSON IN "BUSINESS ETHICS"...AN OXYMORON
TUESDAY through THURSDAY, February 4 through 6,
2020I HAVE NEVER BEEN SO HAPPY TO HAVE LOST A BET.
months ago, I made a $10 dollar bet with someone that House Speaker
Pelosi would not be so STUPID as to attempt to impeach President Trump
on the available evidence.
Well, thankfully she was - and is.
now hope that the Democrats and their certifiable Leftists continue to
do exactly what they have been doing for the last three years. That
will guarantee the re-election of the President for a second term in a
And, if that is not enough for you, look up a Bill that has been introduced in the House of Representative by 40 Democrats:
"THE NEW WAY FORWARD ACT". Don't believe me. Just read it.
MONDAY, February 3,
SUNDAY, February 2,
HAVE YOU CHECKED OUT THE SCOPE OF MY OFFERINGS ON THIS WEB SITE?
One is "Movie Reviews: The Good, The Bad And The Ugly".
With the exception of references to excellent Netflix Documentaries, I have found slim pickings in recent years.
Of course, "Docu-Dramas" are different: some good, some not so good as too reflective of their authors' biases.
One which is worth viewing is "The Two Popes".
Excellent actors, superb scenes and scenery (eg. The Vatican). And if
you have a personal bias in favor of one or the other of the Popes, as
I do, that also will resonate.
But make sure also to read the
movie review on this docu-drama offered by Steven D. Greydanus and
entitled "Papal Caricature". It appears in National Catholic Register,
Feb. 2, 2020. The writer purports to know a great deal about his
subjects; and he paraphrases Roger Ebert on this:
"The more you know about the subject matter and movies, the less you are likely to enjoy them".
lived and through Popes back to Pope Pius Xll, and having been in the
presence of and blessed by Pius Xll in1950 in St. Peter's Basilica at
the age of 17, I will continue my direct observations - and my biases.
WOW. THE IN-HOUSE PHYSICIANS AT THE NYTIMES MUST BE VERY BUSY.
Just check out Maureen Dowd's article and Ross Douthat's article in the Feb. 2, 2020 edition of the NYTimes, Sunday Review.
("Trump, Unrepentant And Unleashed", by Dowd).
("The Only Way To Remove Trump", by Douthat).
the amount of hyperbole on parade there, you can see their hair on
fire. I just hope for their sake that there is "a doctor in the house".
MORE REGARDING MEDICAL PRACTICE,
this from ground level.
Read it and weep...and then get angry and motivated - for yourselves.
SATURDAY , February 1,
SO YOU WANT TO PAY LESS FOR HEALTH INSURANCE...AND HEALTH?
Now, this is something you should Really Get "Woke" On".
Good Health is your responsibility. Start by "picking the right
parents"...and being the right parents. Choose your mates wisely.
2) At least 50% of illness and health care delivery
is Life-Style related: Obesity, excess alcohol use, smoking, illicit
drugs, sexually transmitted diseases, avoidable stressors, avoidable
adverse occupational exposures.... If that's you, live and die with
it...and don't expect me to pay for it.
3) Don't go to your doctor
with a "national lottery" mentality. Medical Mal-practice is a growth
industry for lawyers, not for doctors. Most adverse outcomes are not
the result of negligence - and don't lead to wins in MM suits. But
that's why over 25% of health care costs are related to "defensive
medicine": physicians and other "providers" trying to protect
themselves by over-testing and over-treating.
4) The "Medical -
Industrial Complex" is massive and growing, consisting of health care
insurers, the hospital industry, the pharmaceutical industry - and your
Government / legislators beholden to all kinds of pay-backs. The
higher the costs, the higher the profits. You the patient, and now the
physicians who are becoming mere widgets in the system, are the fodder.
That's the diagnosis.
What is the Treatment?
A) Be aware
of your genetic background, your heredity. Learn from it and adjust
your life and actions accordingly. As an example,women with a family
history of breast cancer should know about their Brac 1 and 2 status.
B) Live a prudent life-style. It's easy, safe, responsible and reassuring.
Although it is becoming much more difficult, search for and select a
good doctor who can also be a good friend - for life. There are still
some out there, although they are ever dealing with Moral Outrage at
the stupid, unfair and cynical conditions under which they increasingly
have to operate - even the private practitioners who are still out
there literally fighting on your behalf.
D) Be a Knowledgeable
Advocate for yourself - or have one with you at all health care
encounters - especially in hospital ER's or as in-patients. It's a
jungle out there. Ask questions. Demand answers that you can
understand. Rattle the Cage. The time is long gone when you could
"don't just do something; lie there".
And demand effective changes in health care costs:
Health Savings Accounts that force you to Think about what costs you are incurring. Self-Insure prudently.
Negotiations with pharmaceutical companies regarding drug prices -
something that your legislators made it UNLAWFUL for them to do in the
Medicare Act of 2002! I wonder why.
And don't expect prior medical problems that are the direct result of irresponsible personal Life-Style to be covered by prospective health insurance policies.
ARE YOU "WOKE" NOW?
MORE ON GLOBAL WARMING (WITHOUT QUOTATION MARKS)...
but this time a rational approach.
See: "Ignore The Fake Climate Debate", by Ted Nordhaus (in WSJ Jan. 25-26, Review, pC3
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