Chartrand…

JoCo Mental health failures

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

Two decades ago the nation’s health care scholars established a blueprint — a set of litmus tests — for community mental health care. It was in the newspapers and everything.

Not everyone paid attention. Nowhere is this failure to follow the lead of modern medicine more vivid than in America’s upper middle class — the affluent suburbs. Consider Exhibit A — Johnson County, Kansas. Ninety-six percent of all Johnson Countians consider it a great place to raise a family, according to a Board of County Commissioners report. The commissioners don’t indicate how many folks consider it a great place to be treated for depression or bipolar disorder, which is to to be expected from officials who use the word “infrastructure” when measuring quality of life.

Mental health Litmus Test #1 was cited by a 1999 U.S. Surgeon General Report. You can look it up. The test looks for the existence of a local “surveillance: system that tracks the incidence of depression, suicidality and other emotional disorders in local population. One cannot reach the countless mentally ill persons in a community if nobody bothers to count them. One cannot discount the possibility that established surveillance methodologies were too confusing or awkward for Johnson County’s leadership. Continue reading

Chartrand…

Storm Quiz: Watch out for speeding dopplers

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

It’s severe storm season in the Midwest. It’s not a time to take lightly. It’s a time to take the Doppler Radar Intelligence Test.

What is Doppler Radar?
(a) It is used by traffic cops to catch speeding dopplers
(b) A 1990s grunge band
(c) A weather tracking service used by virtually all television stations to ensure that if one forecast is wrong all of them are wrong.

Which of the following is not a real meteorological term: Continue reading

Chartrand…

Halloween 1973: The Devil Made Me Do It

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

I recently attended a reunion of high school friends and classmates.  Everyone seemed happy to see me. Everyone, that is, except Helen Stockman.

Thirty-nine years after our last date, Helen was still waiting for Congress to legalize physical violence against people who pull stupid, juvenile Halloween pranks.

“I see no reason,” she told a CNN interviewer, “why such persons shouldn’t be beaten senseless with a baseball bat.”

Thinking back, Helen Stockman was a poor choice for the Halloween prank of 1973. She was a frail, pale 16-year-old who freaked out during school fire drills. I was madly in love with her. Continue reading

Chartrand…

Sleeping with the curse of Hermes

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

Greek legend has it that Hermes, the god of cunning and theft, would swoop down over rooftops at night and sow strange and troubling dreams into the heads of sleeping citizens.

In the morning, no one could remember their dreams in detail, but many were filled worry and dread.

“Hermes has visited you!” was the rebuke to anyone in a gloomy mood.

Those goofy Greeks. What did they have to worry about? The thorniest issue for ancient Greeks and Romans was running out of baby names that ended in “us.” (Romulus, Theodosius, Asparagus, Promiscuous.) Continue reading

Chartrand…

Some things that should make us ponder

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

Pan-Arab broadcaster Al Jazeera says its U.S. news network will offer serious reporting, less yelling and shrill commentary, and less coverage of celebrities — a programming formula certain to alienate American viewers.

——0——

There are two ways to protect your privacy:  Rely on Congress to do it, or stay off the internet.  Both may require prescription drugs.
 ‬

——0——

Is it okay now  to quit reading about that obscenely rich fellow who bought The Washington Post?  Supreme Court nominees have received less public scrutiny. Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: