“Look at every path closely and deliberately, then ask ourselves this crucial question: Does this path have a heart? If it does, then the path is good. If it doesn't, it is of no use.” ~Carlos Castaneda

Friday, August 24, 2007

Liberty or ....

“Politics is a pendulum whose swings between anarchy and
tyranny are fueled by perpetually rejuvenated illusions.”
~Albert Einstein

I love this country. The founding principles are its heart, take them away and it dies. "Give me liberty or give me death," is one of the most famous quotes in our rebellion against the British. In this speech Patrick Henry's made to the Virginia House of Burgesses, he makes this statement:

... it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be of the numbers of those who, having eyes, see not, and, having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth, to know the worst, and to provide for it. ...

We fought for the ability to speak freely. It is the first amendment in the bill of rights. As citizens of the United States, that is our birthright.

I have posted on a number of other blogs and forums pleading with residents and medical students to believe in the "system." I made the statement that the system has been put in place for a reason. I have pleaded with them to let the system work. Unfortunately, my blinders have been removed. I have made the realization that everything is political. The politics of a large medical center are sometimes overbearing. I have never played the political game very well. This is probably because I have a hard time being phony for the purpose of politics.

On a number of other blogs, there have been long discussions about the fear of retaliation from staff if a medical student or resident speaks their mind or states that there is a problem. I have seen a number of forum discussions on people feeling that the have never had their do process. My reaction to these complaints is that there is a system in place and you need to use it. It will all work out. The responses of medical students and residents is that there is no support. Students and resident have complained about having their lives monitored and somewhat controlled by the "system," medical school or residency. They complain that the new medium that they have been brought up on (myspace, facebook, blogs) is being used to monitor them and control their behavior. On forums such as SDN, there have been discussions of how their anonymous opinions about situations with a professor or their institution have been monitored and people have been disciplined for these honest opinions. Does this encroach on their rite of free speech?

This topic has been extended to medical blogging as well. The questions of whether or not medical blogging is ethical. With the increasing scrutiny of the 1000 or so medical blogs, there has been the development of a Health Care Blogger Code of Ethics. With cases like that against the fallen medical blogger Flea, people have become more and more concerned. Dr. K, who writes a blog titled That Mirror Belongs to Frank, changed her blog and deleted previous posts because she is going up for tenure and had a fear that the blog may be found and use against her in her quest for tenure. There has been a recent article addressing the issue of medical blogging on MDNG titled Medical Ethics and Blogging: Think Before you post. Is there a different standard?

In medicine, should we not express our feelings openly? Our we so immune to human condition that we can not express our emotion without fear repercussion? Should we fear openly expressing a opposing opinion? These our questions that I thought I knew the answers to, but know I question those answers. I am reevaluating my view of the system. I am reassessing my place in this world. Can I play the game?

One thinks that if you are in a university or college, true free thought would be encouraged. Opposing opinions would be encouraged. Our job is to encourage and stimulate young fertile minds. We are here to help in the advancement of medical education as well as medical knowledge. When is it that we teach how to navigate through the political cesspool known as the Medical Community? Are those in positions of power the best for the position or the best positioned?

Will I play the game well? Probably not, because as you know the color of my brain is red. I will continue to fight the good fight. We are in a free country and should encourage differences of opinion. We should encourage the dialog. I would hope things would be done directly instead of behind closed doors. We should not let the fear of something happening prevent us from acting. The fear of a new medium is what we are seeing now. It is a new fronter of communication. As with most things in our country, we react to the fear of the unknown by trying to control it. So when all is said and done, will it be liberty or death?
A Dream Within A Dream

Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow--
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand--
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep--while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?

~Edgar Allan Poe

“The secret of happiness is freedom.
The secret of freedom is courage.”


Anonymous said...

My brain is blue.
My score is 70.
"Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer." - M. Corleone
Just a thought that enters my professional mind occaisionally.
Stay strong - play smart.

Someonect said...

taylor's day,

thanks my friend by the way UFC tonight.