Topic: "Never heard of him"
Researchers have shown that more than 15 percent of those who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD (since everything has to have an acronym these days), experience flashbacks and physical symptoms of trauma for years after the actual event. Propanolol, a beta blocker now used to treat high-blood pressure, can blunt this under certain circumstances. The research indicates that memories, be they painful or sweet, don't form instantly, and are analogous to slowly hardening cement. There is an opportunity to shape or even eliminate them with drugs.
"Well duh!," said Frodo. "Haven't any of these guys heard of Dr. Timothy Leary? Didn't any of them ever watch 'Reverend Jim' on 'Taxi'?" Responding to his outburst, Leon Kass, Chairman of the President's Council on Bioethics, stated that the President is opposed to the proposal because he feels that painful memories can serve a purpose. Frodo was unable to let the discussion end at this point.
"For some of us, you know, the President is a painful memory. I can certainly understand why he would be opposed to the elimination of such memories," he said as Frodo challenged the idea of any reference to ethics and George W. Bush used in the same sentence.
"Tut, tut, Mr. Frodo, we certainly should note that victims of rape or other such crimes would be less able to testify against their attackers if they took such medication before the matter was brought to adjudication," responded Mr. Kass.
"Yes, but look on the positive side," said Frodo. "People could just forget about the rise in the cost of gasoline and heating oil. No one would remember what happened after Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast. All of the 'intelligence failures' leading up to the Pre-emptive War in Iraq would be forgotten. And, most importantly, the President could legitimately say that he has no recollection of his military service."
Kass stopped and thought about what Frodo had to say. Frodo always appreciates the fact that there are some people who listen, and learn.
Leon Kass subsequently received the "Medal of Freedom" from a grateful White House. Frodo is still wondering if Propanolol can be rolled into paper, or if it has to be ingested. Wouldn't it be great to just forget about the last five years?