The Study of the Week Celebrates Independence Day
Family vacation offers a time to read a gem of a short story---one with messages for what we aim for at Sensible Medicine
I am at the lake, in Kentucky, with family, ages 2 to 86 years. We have no Wi-Fi. The cell signal is weak.
It rained—a lot. That changes things.
I picked up my Kindle (40% battery left) and opened to one of my favorite “books” — the entire collection of the works of Mark Twain.
At the suggestion of Walter Kirn and Matt Taibbi, I read the Twain short story.
“The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg”
Walter Kirn called it more of a fable.
I know better, but as I read the flawless prose, I could not help thinking about the prescience of this story to our modern times—including the healthcare enterprise. The most corruptible in Hadleyburg were the ones with the most influence.
I also could not help seeing Sowell’s Conflict of Visions buried in the meaning of this story. Once again, as it always seems to me, the constrained vision seems most wise when it comes to dealing with humans—and our nature.
When Kirn and Taibbi discuss Twain’s view of America it made me think of our mission here at Sensible Medicine.
Yes, of course, Twain intended to expose the corruption inherent in the new America. And gosh did he shred the virtuous in Hadleyburg, Ohio.
Twain also had an affection for this place. He wasn’t cynical. Maybe he was hopeful.
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That is how I see our project. How I see our view of medicine.
While there is much to criticize in the healthcare space, we remain skeptical not cynical. Indeed, Medicine is a glorious and worthy field. Because. We help people.
Thank you for your support.
We will back next week with the usual Study of the Week. In the meantime, do let me know what you think about The Man Who Corrupted Hadleyburg.