This past week, while on my daily commute, I heard a debate on one the talk shows I listen to, and not sure if it was Hugh Hewitt or Sean Hannity, about PEST, or Post-Election Selection Trauma. The guy who was stating that this is a serious epidemic and issued a challenge to google the terms post-election selection trauma and post-election syndrome trauma. So I did. And what a sight, or sites, as the case may be.
The Boca News as an article, keeping it up to date as the story develops.
The AHA's actions come after the Boca Raton News reported Tuesday that Palm Beach County psychotherapist Douglas Schooler has already treated 15 Kerry supporters using intense hypnotherapy. Schooler, contacted Wednesday, said four more people had already set up appointments for the onetime therapy session since the article was picked up internationally and cited on Rush Limbaugh's radio show.
"The problem is out there and it's not going to go away anytime soon," Schooler said. "Conservatives are calling me to say these people are weak-kneed kooks, but they're not acknowledging that this is a normal psychological response to a severe and disillusioning situation. Any suggestion that this is not a serious problem arises from a political agenda. The Republicans don't want this talked about."
Schooler is right about one thing, PEST is out there, way out there. I'm beginning to think that the acronym is quite suitable, as these people who are "suffering" from PEST, must be exactly that, PESTs, at least for the analysts they are seeing.
Here's another one, over on AlterNet.
This morning at the farmer's market, I spoke with a woman selling handmade cedar soaps. We were having a perfectly casual conversation until she complimented me on my earrings. "Last night I had a dream about earrings just like that," she exclaimed. "Oh," I said, "that's funny. Last night I dreamed I was forced into being a suicide bomber." She gave me a frightened smile and moved on quickly to the next customer. I chalk up the awkward conversation, and the dream, to PESTS -- Post Election Stress and Trauma Syndrome. This new disease, with which I am severely afflicted, seems to be sweeping whole areas of the country, with doctors and concerned friends and family reporting new cases each day. The symptoms vary region to region and person to person, but the general diagnosis is the same: severe disorientation, melancholy, a need to be around like-minded others and a lingering fear that the country is going to hell in a handbasket. Howard Menger, a film technician in New York, woke up with PESTS on the Wednesday after the election. He called his old friend Jerry in Ohio, who'd been the best man at his wedding, and left this message: "Just calling to make sure, for the sake of me and my family and people around the world, that you didn't vote for Bush yesterday. Give me a call and reassure me. "By Sunday, he hadn't heard back. "I have a gut feeling," he says, "that it might be the end of a 10-year friendship."
Now, I am not sure if this column is serious, or poking fun at PESTs, however, looking at some of the other content on the site, I would hazard a guess that this is for real.
The symptoms of PEST are described as:
Feelings of withdrawal Feelings of isolation Emotional anger and bitterness Loss of appetite Sleeplessness Nightmares Pervasive moodiness, including endless sulking Excessively worried about the direction of the country.
Checking further, I found a cure for PEST over on Free Republic. If you can't deal with another four years of Bush, MOVE TO CANADA! Although the Canadians may not want them either. Of course, there is always France.
This also leaves one to wonder: What will happen in 2008 when they lose again?