Deflation: A Leading Indicator
of Lying and the Need for Night Goggles in Washington

         In the Houston
Chronicle
, it is reported that the New England Patriots will SAVE $880,000
due to the penalties handed down by the NFL for DeflationGate. How is that possible?
Because the amount they will not be paying Tom Brady during his 4-game
suspension is $1.88 M and the amount they have been fined is $1 M, thus the
team will save money. The two draft choices the Patriots will be without (a #1
and a #4) shouldn’t hurt them all that much as Brady himself was a 6th
round draft choice. My guess is that at worst they will go 2 and 2 during
Brady’s absence and still make the playoffs.

         Some penalty!

         This is truly ludicrous. These NFL players beat up their
women, probably commit murder, and even undermine the integrity (what ever
there is left) of their own game and no one blinks an eye. OK, maybe Roger
Goodell blinked, but that’s all and that could have just been gold dust in his
eye.

         When I was a child, my punishment would have been worse than
that if I just lied to my father.

What’s
the message to the country and the world when Hillary gets away with her email
nonsense, her husband collects huge speaking fees (when it looks as if he is
struggling to put two words together as it is) only because of where he lies
(next to her) and she sits (the State Department), and now athletes who use
performance enhancing drugs or bet on games get worse punishment than those who
blatantly cheat AND ARE CAUGHT! Of course, I guess cheating is in the eye of
the beholder when gold dust isn’t. Ask George Stephanopoulos who wants us to
believe that he is unbiased after having given $75,000 to the Clinton
Foundation and not informed ABC News of his little donation. Fire the bum!

         I am surely glad I do not have to explain this to young
children because I could not.

         And this is no different than what has happened to my
beloved profession. The New England
Journal of Medicine
, no less, is in the middle of publishing a three-part
series of articles by Lisa Rosenbaum questioning the porous wall between
industry and academics as being too inhibitory. Give me a break!

         Do you recall the time when doctors were really all about
helping people? I do. My family doctor, Albert Fuss, stitched me up in the
middle of the night, gave me allergy shots, and in general, used his eyes, ears
and hands to make the diagnosis of hepatitis when I was 10 without the use of
CT scans, blood tests or MRIs. I doubt he died a wealthy man (in his 60’s) given
his office was in the back of his house and his wife was his nurse. Yet that
man made me a doctor because I wanted to emulate the magic and the power he had
bottled into a friendly but stern demeanor. I only saw him lose his temper
once. That was when my father took me to a chiropractor after I injured myself
playing baseball instead of first taking me to Dr. Fuss. Chiropractors were not
held in high regard by the medical profession in 1962.

         I am appalled at what I see around me every day from the
gross unhappiness of what was once the greatest cancer fighting faculty ever
assembled to the back page of the Style section of the Chronicle showing a truly awful person, our President, with other
awful people like President Bill Clinton (is there a presidential theme here?),
raising money for the Moon Shots or it could be for new couches now that the
old ones got shipped to Austin. This was at a Living Legend affair in
Washington where President Clinton (who owes us an apology for lying about sex)
and Colin Powell (who owes us an apology for lying about WMDs) were honored.
Who’s the next Living Legend? Bernie Madoff?

         I know I am an old person and supposedly disgruntled, but
the very world I thought I could trust even as the NFL and Democratic politics
went to hell, that of academic medicine, is being sold to the highest bidder
and there are apparently no shortage of buyers in the pharmaceutical industry
to give away stock and walk away with faculty and install them in the corner
office. Wanna bet where the CAR-T cell trials will be done?

         And just to make you crazy, guess who else was celebrating with
the MD Anderson Living Legends in Washington, DC—Chancellor McRaven. Don’t send
the McRaven signal up in the Gotham or Houston night sky. Bill won’t see
it.  He left his night goggles at home.

         Holy stock options, Batman!

         Alfred, get me a drink. 

Leonard Zwelling