March 23

David Mamet resolves dissonance

32  comments

mamet.jpg
David Mamet
A couple of weeks ago David Mamet, prolific author, screen writer, director, and playwright, wrote an essay in The Village Voice about his conversion from a “brain-dead liberal” to a sort of conservative. After a lifetime of running with the far-left Hollywood crowd and promoting their brand of liberalism, Mamet slowly began to realize that life as he actually experienced it conflicted with his political beliefs creating major cognitive dissonance.

I took the liberal view for many decades, but I believe I have changed my mind.
As a child of the ’60s, I accepted as an article of faith that government is corrupt, that business is exploitative, and that people are generally good at heart.
These cherished precepts had, over the years, become ingrained as increasingly impracticable prejudices. Why do I say impracticable? Because although I still held these beliefs, I no longer applied them in my life. How do I know? My wife informed me. We were riding along and listening to NPR. I felt my facial muscles tightening, and the words beginning to form in my mind: Shut the f**k up. “?” she prompted. And her terse, elegant summation, as always, awakened me to a deeper truth: I had been listening to NPR and reading various organs of national opinion for years, wonder and rage contending for pride of place. Further: I found I had been—rather charmingly, I thought—referring to myself for years as “a brain-dead liberal,” and to NPR as “National Palestinian Radio.”
This is, to me, the synthesis of this worldview with which I now found myself disenchanted: that everything is always wrong.
But in my life, a brief review revealed, everything was not always wrong, and neither was nor is always wrong in the community in which I live, or in my country. Further, it was not always wrong in previous communities in which I lived, and among the various and mobile classes of which I was at various times a part.
And, I wondered, how could I have spent decades thinking that I thought everything was always wrong at the same time that I thought I thought that people were basically good at heart? Which was it? I began to question what I actually thought and found that I do not think that people are basically good at heart; indeed, that view of human nature has both prompted and informed my writing for the last 40 years. I think that people, in circumstances of stress, can behave like swine, and that this, indeed, is not only a fit subject, but the only subject, of drama.
I’d observed that lust, greed, envy, sloth, and their pals are giving the world a good run for its money, but that nonetheless, people in general seem to get from day to day; and that we in the United States get from day to day under rather wonderful and privileged circumstances—that we are not and never have been the villains that some of the world and some of our citizens make us out to be, but that we are a confection of normal (greedy, lustful, duplicitous, corrupt, inspired—in short, human) individuals living under a spectacularly effective compact called the Constitution, and lucky to get it.

As discussed in Mistakes Were Made, it’s difficult to hold two opposing beliefs, and most people try to resolve their dissonance by explaining away anything that conflicts with their predominant belief. It is extremely difficult and therefore unusual when someone renounces an entrenched set of beliefs held for a lifetime, and especially when done as Mamet did in such a public way.
People generally start out with no real political ideology. As the authors of Mistakes Were Made would put it, people start at the top of a pyramid of belief. Something tips them one way or another and they head down a particular path. As they build up speed heading toward the base of the pyramid confirmation bias kicks in and speeds them along their way. They tend to associate with people who believe the same as they; they read editorialists who confirm their own beliefs; they troll the blogs, read the books, listen to the talk radio programs and watch opinion TV shows that are congruent with their own beliefs. By the time they get to the bottom of the opinion pyramid, they can’t conceive of anyone holding a different opinion. They may have a friend or sibling who traveled down the opposite side of the pyramid and holds opposing views that have been seasoned by marinating in another type of confirmation bias, and this friend or sibling is regarded as, at best, misguided, at worst, stupid or evil. And this friend or sibling feels the same about them.
It is most difficult to spend the time wallowing in confirmation bias for years and reaching the bottom of the pyramid only to find that your entrenched opinions conflict with your observations. Most people try to make sense of their observations by interpreting them in such a way to be compatible with their beliefs. It takes a strong person to be able to step up and say I can’t reconcile what I see with what I believe, so I need to change my beliefs to conform with what I see instead of vice verse. And to do it publicly as Mamet has done takes a lot of gumption. I’ve got to take my hat off to him.

I found not only that I didn’t trust the current government (that, to me, was no surprise), but that an impartial review revealed that the faults of this president—whom I, a good liberal, considered a monster—were little different from those of a president whom I revered.
Bush got us into Iraq, JFK into Vietnam. Bush stole the election in Florida; Kennedy stole his in Chicago. Bush outed a CIA agent; Kennedy left hundreds of them to die in the surf at the Bay of Pigs. Bush lied about his military service; Kennedy accepted a Pulitzer Prize for a book written by Ted Sorenson. Bush was in bed with the Saudis, Kennedy with the Mafia. Oh.
And I began to question my hatred for “the Corporations”—the hatred of which, I found, was but the flip side of my hunger for those goods and services they provide and without which we could not live.

I decided a while back to leave politics off this blog, and when I first read this piece it didn’t occur to me to post about it. But then I got to thinking about it in terms Mistakes Were Made, and I realized how difficult it is to make a giant switch over as Mamet has done, and make it so publicly. I thought it would be illustrative of the steps someone goes through to make such a switch, and since most of the world doesn’t read The Village Voice, I figured I would put it up for all to read.
I suspect that most of us have gone through a similar process in making the conversion to low-carb from low-fat. We’ve had to overcome the disbelief of friends and family that we could possible do something so stupid and dangerous as go on a low-carb diet. But we saw the results, and we were able to believe more in what we saw and experienced than in what we believed to be true, so we went with reality. Our friends haven’t made the leap and they all regard our dietary decisions in much the same way that the Hollywood crown must regard Mamet’s.
I don’t necessarily hold Mamet’s political views, but I do enjoy a lot of his writing. I especially enjoyed Bambi verses Godzilla, his book on the movie business, which is, in my opinion, a masterpiece. It is great reading for anyone wanting a critical insider’s view of what goes on in the making of motion pictures. Plus it gives a lot of tips on old movies, many of which MD and I have rented and enjoyed.
I’ll be happy to put up any comments that come through on this post, but I’m not going to engage in political debate. As I said, this was Mamet’s conversion, not mine. I’m simply posting it to show how someone goes through the thought processes to overcome a long-held point of view. If you want to argue about Mamet’s reasoning, write Mamet and argue with him, not me.


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  1. It’s too bad that the people who still hold on to the low fat/ high carb dogma don’t have an awakening moment. But like you said, when they get to the bottom of the pyramid they can’t see or believe any other point of view.

  2. I definitely know the feeling. I remember that after having a nutrition class in college I was a staunch supporter of the USDA diet. This was around the time that study came out on the Atkin diet that made low-carbing popular a few years ago. Low-carb was all over the news and advertising again and I would go around scoffing at all these fools believing fallacies about low-carb dieting. Why could they just realize they were only losing water weight, I thought? I really thought I was in good company agreeing with the establishment. Then someone told me about the Paleo diet. I went to search pubmed not thinking there was anything to it, but I’m an argumentative person so I enjoyed the challenge. I didn’t find much on it until I learned about Loren Cordain. After much reading I was convinced that I had been wrong. Similar story with your good buddy Anthony Colpo. I thought I could give Anthony the evidence that cholesterol causes heart disease that he was always screaming at people for not showing him (he likes to get super iratated alot. P.S. Do you think his good low-carb dieing and exercise can offset the effects of his stress?). I started double checking all his references assuming that he was lying about what they said… wrong! Say what you will about Anthony, he knows his cholesterol research and I have him to thank for turning me from the dark side.
    I’m glad you turned. I don’t have any issues with Anthony and his cholesterol research.

  3. Hi Mike,
    Strange, it seems Mamet has gone from just confused to terminally bewildered … in fact it is hard to see if anything fundamental has changed at all, apart from his skepticism about the morals and motives of government and corporations being extended to individuals, and an amazement that considering how bad we/they are, we aren’t in a worse mess than we appear to be. Apparently in his mind conservatism equates with acceptance that what we have is only as bad as it always has been, and we can’t expect any better, because when placed under stress (or in positions of power/influence?) we should expect people to “act like swine”. What a depressing world he must live in if he can’t see how often the reverse is true (at least in this neck of the woods you most often see the best in people when the stress of a natural or man made disaster requires a more selfless community) – and even more soul destroying if he now believes this is the best to which we can aspire. Forget politics (because I doubt many conservatives would agree) – it is sad that such a gifted writer has arrived at such a low place.
    Cheers,
    Malcolm

  4. Reading some of the comments after Mamet’s essay, it’s clear that there’s a high price to pay for resolving cognitive dissonance. Apart from the really vicious personal attacks from his old “friends” there are plenty of patronizing and smarmy remarks from his new ones (“What took you so long”, etc.)
    It’s a very socially isolating move, regardless of which side you start on and which side you end up on.
    Interesting. I hadn’t read the comments. Pretty enlightening. Thanks for the tip.

  5. Mike
    You lobbed this one close to home. As you know, I had my own political and philosophical conversion not so long ago and reading your posts on Mistakes Were Made and David Mamet reminds me of that period in my life. It started with my admiration and support for a republican/libertarian governor and continued with my being influenced by new friends and reexamining the views of old friends, family, and the liberal-thinking area where I lived. One friend in particular was instrumental in my political transformation (he must necessarily remain unnamed) and the events of 9/11 also had a major impact on me with regard to the nature of man. I don’t think of mankind as evil now, but I sure don’t regard it as inherently good and well intentioned as I once believed. Right now I’m leaning toward a mix of mankind as opportunistic, emotional, unemotional, stupid, and lucky that things are going as well as they are for most of us humans. Or at least some of us. (Evidently I’m still experiencing a little dissonance.)
    You’ll really experience some dissonance next time we play golf and you have to pay mightily. You may change your opinion of humankind yet again.
    Cheers–
    Mike

  6. I think there is a connection from politics to diet. The connection is about how humans evolved and how that evolution involved both diet and interaction with other humans. I think that most of our ethics are a product of social interaction from the hunter-gatherer days, and our best dietary choices also come from that legacy.
    Hunter-gatherers were conservative in the sense that they only spent resources on close relatives and on others who could help them survive and prosper. They did not give resources to other tribes that could not reciprocate.
    And from the dietary side, they also had little access to massive amounts of sugar and other carbs, and we have all inherited the results of that.

  7. I think a lot of people’s confusion over their political leanings comes when they allow themselves to identify with a particular political party rather than the specific ideological tennets they are supposed to represent.
    If you identify strongly with a specific ideal, you should not be supportive of a politician whose track record shows he/she does not, regardless of the party they represent or the words they say.

  8. Mixed in amongst mankind is a significant minority who do not feel empathy or compassion because they cannot, the psychopaths. Unfortunately this minority can have a huge malign influence on the majority and when they achieve wealth and power all Hell can and does break loose. Mamet must have met many throughout his career, Hollywood is a magnet for such manipulative individuals. I find it depressing that he doesn’t seem to recognize this essential but unpalatable truth – but then he is hardly alone.

  9. I think his conversion is much more difficult than for most of us. Most nutritionists and doctors excluded from that us, their conversion may be as hard. I think most of us who believe in low carb/paleo/whatever had basically known the low-fat diet was not working for them no matter what they were told or read. If anyone tried low carb, it was almost assuredly against their doctor’s advice. When it worked, those who stuck with it (not going back to carbs after weight loss) had to read up on it because everyone told us it would eventually clog our arteries.
    I think this hold especially true for those people who were more obese and had tried all the diets. A lot of those people would try anything to lose weight.

  10. So much of what we’re taught about ourselves isn’t based on actual observations or science, but on what certain stakeholders would have us believe. For example, religious leaders insist that we are meant to be monogamous for life. Yet this does not explain why, to this day, 99% of male sperm cannot fertilize an egg. Instead, these spermatozoa exist only to block or attack the sperm of other males. In other words, we are literally built for ferocious unfaithfulness. (I’d like to see what Norman Rockwell would have done with that little fact!) We are complicated and fascinating animals, and not as far from the jungle as we would like to think.
    I loved the recent revelation from Mother Theresa’s diaries that she had lost her faith in God — in the late 1950s! — yet never mentioned it to a soul. Are her efforts less impressive now that we know they were the acts of an atheist?
    And I’ve always loved this quote by Learned Hand: The spirit of liberty is the spirit that is not too sure that it is right.

  11. I remember the first time I came accross the idea of a low-carb diet and I thought it was utter rubbish and could never work. However, my friend got allergic to wheat and was forced to go on low-carb, and I saw her weight-loss. And I was still able to tell myself it must be because her system is screwed up and not functioning properly. This was in 2001.
    Then, in 2004 and 2005 (so a good 4 years later) two friends of mine, and my sister, after years and years of dieting, began Atkins, and got amazing results. Their weight-loss could not be just water lost, it had to be something else. Still, it took me almost 2 years to try it out for myself, after extensive research into the matter. Finally, I realized that I had been wrong about low-carb diets all along, when I saw the results in my own body and health. It took me only 7 years. I certainly went through something similar to Mamet’s experience, and it is not an easy process, especially since young people like me have been brainwashed into believing the “truth” about calories and fat. It takes a lot of effort to question the consensus if no one else does it.
    Thank you for this post. There’s a lot of work to be done, and a lot of people hopefully will change their beliefs and ideas, but as in my case, it will take a lot of time and effort.

  12. Dr. Eades, thank you for your wonderful and enlightening blog post (all of them, actually). I share your admiration of Mamet’s courage. And thank you to Jimmy for his link to the Dr. Weil story. I’ve been reading Taubes’ book and feeling that seething frustration and anger about the great lies that our society has bought and continues to blindly follow, so seeing that such great and public reversals are possible and indeed taking place re-affirms my hope that the truth will prevail after all. It just takes so much patience and persistence. Thank you for your and MD’s relentless work toward this imminent happy ending, where we all live healthily ever after.

  13. Just have to respond a bit to Macomb’s comments.
    I think an objective view of “life” would indicate that on a continuium from optimism to pessimism, “realism” belongs clearly on the pessimism side. That doesn’t mean one should “give up”, or always think the worst of people. But it does mean that a realistic view would be to hope for and cherish good things, but don’t be surprised by the bad.
    Reading assignment for a realistic view of life:
    “The Selfish Gene” by Richard Dawkins
    “The Philospohy of Schopenhauer ” by Bryan Magee
    Just trying to help. 🙂
    John

  14. Mike
    Completely off topic. One of your favorite artists will be in Santa Barbara on April 12th. Iris will be performing at Soho Restaurant & Music Club. Just FYI in case you did not know.
    Bryant
    Thanks for the heads up. Sadly, I will be at the Nutrition & Metabolism meeting in Phoenix on April 12.
    april

  15. Okay. Provocative piece. Challenging common assumptions is a good thing.
    How far are we willing to go?
    For me, it was the assumption that God exists and cares for us.
    Now, wait a minute. I’m not here to grind an axe or promote an agenda. Theology or atheism has little sway with me.
    But, as we consider a hunter-gatherer lifestyle, should we also consider the cultural baggage of “civilization”? Should we examine every aspect of faith without proof? Until now this blog has treaded lightly upon sensitive topics. I’m not asking Dr. Mike to comment. I am asking readers to consider everything open to question.
    Politics and religion and nutrition all influence our lives. Why not hold them all under the same microscope?
    Ricardo

  16. I think that David Mamet has started to eat VLC and to supplement with at least 2000IU Vitamin D and 2 grams of fish oil daily. This has caused his dark view of the world to lift and light and optimism to suffuse his worldview. That’s what happened to me.
    Marla
    Perhaps so.

  17. Hi Mike (and John),
    I am guessing I am “Macomb” – see what an optimistic/realistic soul I am? 😉
    Anyway John, apparently you also confuse conservatism with pessimism – a definition, as I said before, I doubt many who consider themselves conservative in the political sense would find appealing (or accurate). As for the ‘continuum of life’ – I’d suggest people tend to become more conservative as they age (I always worried about the students I met who were already committed to the far right … they missed out on so much!!) – but pessimism? – I guess it depends on the company you keep (and perhaps this has affected David Mamet) as to how your expectations change. Personally I’d say I am still an optimist about many things changing for the better (including low carb acceptance) … but a realist in terms of how long that may take!
    Homework? Gee thanks John! Well I have already read most of Dawkins books including The Selfish Gene and his latest opus (I think Hitchens and Harris did a better job on that one). I am just guessing, but I imagine you think we are doomed because our behaviour is dictated by our primary role as gene carriers? – you will be amazed that I don’t agree – but I do get a lot of fairly innocent amusement at those who suggest even raising the possibility of some degree of group selection means you are a desperate leftist clutching at straws to show evidence of collectivist behavior … when I’m pretty sure they thought they were discussing science. 🙂
    I know who Magee is and also a bit about poor old Schopenhauer – but I have not read his (Magee’s) interpretation. Again I am guessing but as a fellow atheist (like Dawkins) I doubt he swallowed the giving up will bit – as for his conditional pessimism – well in a way he is right, perpetual pleasure/happiness is a nonsense (always wondered how those who believe in Heaven got around that) – as clearly you need pain/loss/illness/deprivation to appreciate the alternative. So what? It doesn’t mean we should give up on desire or will or striving for a better life (and believing one is possible).
    In any event, even if David Mamet believes he has resolved his personal dissonance (or others who agree with his change of heart do) … it doesn’t mean his solution is any less delusional than the example Mike quoted in his previous post … but his conversion may well prop up a few more pyramids … just a thought.
    Cheers,
    Malcolm

  18. Mamet is one of my more favorite playwrights. I look forward to seeing how this plays out in his dramas.
    If you are interested in the issue of how people change their minds, check out the writings of NeoNeoCon. Like Mamet, she’s an ex-NY-liberal who gradually turned towards conservatism. She has written very thoughtfully about how it is that people change their minds politically in her series
    http://neoneocon.com/category/a-mind-is-a-difficult-thing-to-change
    As to Ricardo’s question – can we include religious questions in with political one? Maybe. But check out amateur Unitarian theologian Peter Taylor.
    http://home.earthlink.net/~peter.a.taylor/heathen.htm
    He writes about the Conservation of Irrationality
    There appears to me to be a strong negative correlation between the people whose religious views make sense and those whose political views make sense. My explanation for this is that (1) much of the irrational behavior associated with religion is related to people having a craving for ego justification, (2) changing a person’s theological beliefs has little effect on his tendency to crave ego justification, and (3) politics is the continuation of religion by other means.
    So it’s like Heisenberg, he says. The more rational you get in your religion, the more irrational you get in your politics.
    For the story of someone who’s walked the other direction, check out David Kuo’s blog. Kuo was a political and religious conservative and an operative in G.W. Bush’s White House during the first term.
    http://blog.beliefnet.com/jwalking/
    Interesting links. Thanks.

  19. What is it about privileged white males that they come off as such babies?
    “As a child of the ’60s, I accepted as an article of faith that government is corrupt, that business is exploitative, and that people are generally good at heart.”
    Really? As a subteen around the same time as he took the above as “an article of faith” , I certainly developed a much more nuanced view thanks to the liberal Irish nuns responsible for my moral and political upbringing. Faith they left to a concept called god, the rest they constantly told us, was entirely in our hands. A tougher bunch of instructors I have yet to meet when it came to what we were held personally responsible. To this day, I find protestant white male preachers(and other male “authorities”) can’t hold a candle next to those women.
    Governments are as corrupt as their citizens let them be–it is the moral obligation of the citizenry to fix what’s wrong. In a democracy such as ours, it’s currently taking place in the unprecedented numbers of young voters coming out to vote in the democratic primaries–that’s just one example. A business, big or small, is an amoral, nonhuman entity which, once again, must be altered and influenced by the customer and stockholder. It’s called taking responsibility as opposed to falling into passivity and fatalism.
    As a person who belongs to two cultures and deals with at least eight different others on a daily basis, I am able to say that good and evil are relative terms and that some people are not good at all in an Enlightenment sense. That is, they don’t believe that all humans are created equal, that opportunity belongs to everyone, that civic duty is a responsibility that applies to them–fatalism is the default position for everything. Which is just another way of saying; let somebody else do something about it.
    Really, this is not an exageration–I deal with first generation immigrant business owners who think that the US of A happened by magic. You want cognitive dissonance? Try having a conversation with someone who has no idea that the Founding Fathers, students of the Enlightenment, are responsible for the success of his life here by having written a document that makes his life fundamentally different from the culture he had to leave. Anybody who wants to believe that people are generally good at heart, hasn’t been talking to real live people.
    I have been a liberal since grade school, and will always be one. It is a CHOICE that must be upheld by review and perspective, by involvement. I suggest that Mamet get off his overprivileged, white male posterior, spend some time comtemplating his own lazy-ass fatalism and find out what real liberals are doing today. Brain-dead indeed!

  20. I am just guessing, but I imagine you think we are doomed because our behavior is dictated by our primary role as gene carriers?
    Not at all. Something VERY interesting happened when the evolutionary tree of primate “survival machines” (as Dawkins puts it), yielded a self-aware entity. We, probably alone as creatures on this planet, can discover enough of the information as to what, at base, is actually going on (reality), to realize that the former “servant” can now become the “master”. We can decide ( and have, actually) to NOT just be automatic mechanisms for the distribution of the “selfish” genes. What we experience as our own consciousness, is now the primary thing. And we want it to continue, genes be damned.
    Nevertheless, despite what we “want”, the Cosmos doesn’t “care” about us, and is, in fact, a very scary place, for “life”. Hence, the “pessimism”. It doesn’t have to “all work out”, for us. Among other danges, IF we’re lucky, we’ll be able to save the planet from the next world-busting asteroid hit, but that is not certain.
    Meanwhile, we might as well make the best of it. Live, and let live. Be good to each other, etc. I’m certainly trying to.
    Best,
    John

  21. Doc, I sure hope you keep this blog on-topic and don’t let it devolve into just another of the zillion joints on the net where dorks compete over how well-read they are.
    I think that issues involving cognitive dissonance and the confirmation bias are on topic as they help explain the seemingly inexplicable: how people can cling to the notion that low-fat, high-carbohydrate diets are healthful.

  22. No worries, Sam. I’m done commenting on this thread, and on that subject. But I have to take a little umbrage that you think me a “dork” who wants to show “how well-read” I am. You don’t know me. I quote others to give them credit, not to show I am well-read. I don’t like taking credit ( or even implying it) for an idea that is not original with me. I realize that this can be misinterpreted, and can be tedious to read, but I see it as the lesser of two evils.
    Best,
    John

  23. Nice posting, fun comments, love your books and blogs.
    One teensy quibble: since Mamet is a man of the theater, I doubt very much that he had any trouble whatsoever sharing his conversion experience with the public. I think David Mamet is *eager* to share just about anything that occurs to him with the public!

  24. Interesting. I have nothing worthwhile to contribute to this discussion other than to say I agree with Mamet’s characterization of NPR. I stopped listening for the same reason.
    Totally unrelated, but every time I try to access past blogs it just keeps kicking me to the latest page.
    I’m trying to get the blog fixed so that the archives can be accessed, but so far no one has been able to figure out exactly what the problem is.

  25. Thanks for the post. LOL – I can relate because I was also a “brain-dead” liberal for while and moved to what I consider to be a more moderate political position. My husband and I can no longer listen to NPR. We find ourselves frustrated on topics we have some knowledge of, such as nutrition.
    For instance, my husband caught himself yelling at the radio when a proposal was brought forth and seriously discussed how the state should be spending money on educating pre-schoolers to stop the spread of child obesity. If you’ve met any actual pre-schoolers *grin*, I think you’re perfectly aware that their parents control what they eat. You can spend a day “educating” them and if you offer them a chips and cupcake for a meal the next day, they’d be eating that. I’m not against nutrition education, it was frustration at the idea that educating 4 year olds who pretty much have to eat what’s presented is going to have a serious impact on childhood obesity.
    Anyway, I agree that this is on topic as choosing low carb even today is much like converting from “good hearted liberal” (ie low fat and/or vegetarian) to the “evil conservatives” (ie a protein/meat based diet). All I know is that I tend to in social circles minimize discussions of my diet to avoid controversy in a diverse group. Low carb discussions seem to produce anger that I can only explain as “religious zeal”.
    You’re only following a low-carb diet and you get grief in social circles. Imagine what I have to endure being a major public proponent of such diets.

  26. You’re only following a low-carb diet and you get grief in social circles. Imagine what I have to endure being a major public proponent of such diets.
    I can imagine and believe me, every public proponent of low carb has my sincerest graditude.
    Personally I wish I could do more to help spread the word but doing more than I do now (educating myself and few interested ears) means losing focus both on my work and my children, whom I homeschool.
    As an aside, I’ve experienced an occasional response that when you are out of the mainstream that somehow it’s enjoyable, cool, or easy “to be a rebel”. I’ve often thought that people who have that response have never been in a position of opposition of the mainstream. Those who have done it on any level knows being out of the “mainstream” means extra work, awkward social situations, and being at odds with good people you count as friends. In other words, it taint no fun and I don’t think any sane person would choose it unless there was something important on the line.
    So thanks to you and others like you. I’ve seen just a small slice of what you put up with and I’m grateful for the sacrifice. There is no greater gift than the restoration of health. Without low carb I’d be the depressed, overweight, mess of a no energy mother I was a few years ago. (Now I’m a high energy mess of a mother. 😉 ) Keep up the great work and thanks again.

  27. It’s not exactly dissonance, but it’s more bad science: Now we’re supposed to believe belly fat causes dementia. Preposterous. If anything, they have the same root cause, mostly likely chronically elevated insulin / high blood sugar.
    http://www.redorbit.com/news/health/1313537/belly_fat_linked_to_an_increased_risk_of_dementia/index.html?source=r_health
    I’m beginning to think Richard Stein — who says this can all be prevented with a lowfat diet — is one of the worst scientists around. Mistakes were made, but not by him.
    Jesus wept.

  28. Mike: “I’ve long thought and Alzhiemer’s is nothing but diabetes of the brain.”
    That’s exactly what Peter on the HyperLipid (high-fat) blog has argued. In fact, he has called Alzheimer’s Disease “type three diabetes.” Do you think that name will catch on? :^)
    http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.com/2007/12/memes-and-g.html
    http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.com/2006/10/now-alzheimers-disease.html
    I suspect that in time the idea will catch on although I don’t know if the name will.

  29. Actually, I just found some articles mentioning “type three diabetes” and Google gives a lot of hits for “type 3 diabetes.” Try searching for “type-3-diabetes OR type-three-diabetes” (remove the quotes). I get almost 14,000 hits for that. Only 22 for “type three diabetes” by itself. Here are some articles mentioning the theory that Alzheimer’s is caused by insulin resistance in the brain. This theory really seems to be picking up steam.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/main.jhtml?xml=/earth/2007/09/27/scidem127.xml
    http://www.diabetesincontrol.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=2582
    http://health.dailynewscentral.com/content/view/0001969/53/
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4315609.stm

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