It’s time to see if my stalker has given up. On July 22, 2014, I changed the settings on this blog to require users to log in before they can vote on the thumbs up/thumbs down. I didn’t want to do that but my stalker forced my hand. He was coming to Green Comet and systematically giving my posts thumbs down. That was okay. Everyone should be allowed to express their honest opinion here. But my stalker went too far. He showed that he is either simply crass, or he was giving the thumbs down votes without reading the posts. On July 12 I put up a tribute post to Pery Burge, and my stalker immediately gave it his usual thumbs down. Who does that to a lovely tribute to a deceased person? My disgust meant it was time to act.
Image credit – Szilas – Public domain – Click for larger
It was successful. My stalker was either too afraid or too lazy to register to continue his campaign. This site has been free of his distasteful contributions for over a month. Now it’s time to remove the barrier to voting and see whether we’ve shaken him off for good. The voting on thumbs up/thumbs down is again open to all without the requirement to register.
Researchers at the University of Eastern Finland have found a correlation between cynical distrust and a higher diagnosis rate for Alzheimer disease later in life. There seems to be a link between cynicism – assuming the worst about the motives of others – and dementia. So is it safe to say that cynical distrust is an Alzheimer precursor? Maybe. Then, can we say that cynicism causes dementia? No. Correlation is not causation. The fact that cynicism and distrust of others seems to be an Alzheimer precursor does not mean that it causes it, as the researchers were careful to point out.
It’s possible that cynicism is just one trait of an overall ‘negative’ personality, and this is another example of attitude affecting health. It may be part of a personality type that makes a person less likely to lead a healthy life. It could even be that the distrustful trait is one of the early signs of dementia, and that the causation goes the other way. The researchers stress that their small study is not definitive. They’re hoping that other, larger studies will be conducted to clarify the matter.
Even though this correlation is not definitive, previous studies have shown a link between cynical distrust and other problems, such as coronary disease. So the message is to lighten up. Negative thoughts can make you sick.
Just because you’re paranoid, that doesn’t mean no one’s out to get you. That old saying is true for some people. Paranoia can be a useful trait for a spy, say. Or a despot. But for most people it’s just a problem. Paranoia, loosely defined as a psychological disorder involving delusions of persecution or grandeur, can cause intellectual impairment, hallucinations and just plain crotchetiness. At the extreme it can lead to homicidal tendencies or the need to rule the world. It causes suspicion of other people and can make for a very difficult social life. Paranoia is not a viable survival trait outside of a few very specific situations. It’s not a good evolutionary trait either. The human species wouldn’t be successful if everyone was paranoid. Still, it would be just as bad for us if we were completely free of suspicion. If the tiger didn’t get us the loan shark would. Continue Reading