Saturday, October 25, 2008

[in sickness] and in leadership


How many world leaders and people who have had an influence on the thinking of their times and on history, have actually been too sick to impartially do their work, for example:

In 1973, George Pompidou, premier of France, attended the summit meeting of world leaders in Reykjavik, Iceland. Journalists noted he wore a scarf around his neck. But why a scarf in May?

It was revealed later as an attempt to hide a swelling of his neck. But he could not conceal the swelling of his cheeks and face. Pompidou's bloated cheeks were the result of cortisone injections. He was also suffering from anemia ...

Others:

Cheney [heart], Blair [heart], Colin Powell [cancer], Arafat, Sharon, Castro, Abe, McCain, Kim - these are the standard conditions. But what of Charles Darwin , Stonewall Jackson [both obsessive compulsive], Barry Goldwater, Ronald Reagan [both with dementia], FD Roosevelt [polio], Pope John Paul II, Adolph Hitler , Mao Tse Tung, George Wallace, Pierre Trudeau [all with Parkinsons], JFK [multitude of ailments], many leaders [Aspergers], Henry VIII [syphilis, gout], to name a few.

How many leaders have had their conditions suppressed?

Each condition affects the individual in its own way but reflecting on your own illnesses over time - would you say you were functioning at your best at these times? What if you were making critical decisions in your work at the same time? What if your position were such that your decisions affected millions [or even a few hundred]?

3 comments:

Colin Campbell said...

Tito Dead
Bush Brain Missing?
Palin Gagged?

Martin said...

James,

I once posited the theory that the emperor Claudius, Robespierre and Peter the Great all suffered from rather extreme forms of Tourette Syndrome; their histories all exhibited signals of TS pathology.

As a TS sufferer, I wouldn't want another twitcher in charge of anything.

James Higham said...

Stay well, boys.