ShareThis Page
Tom Purcell

Tom Purcell: Frigid winter SAD for anti-Trumpers

| Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018, 9:00 p.m.
A boy has his face bundled against temperatures in the teens on the National Mall, Thursday, Dec. 28, 2017, in Washington, D.C.
A boy has his face bundled against temperatures in the teens on the National Mall, Thursday, Dec. 28, 2017, in Washington, D.C.

Boy, it's cold across America.

It's so cold, politicians are picking their own pockets, people are flocking inside the U.S. Capitol just for the hot air, and the outlook for anti-Trumpers has been downgraded from miserable and bewildered to hopelessly depressed.

Here's one reason anti-Trumpers are especially down this winter: Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

According to , this woeful malady is triggered by overcast winter weather. Lack of exposure to sunlight can cause low levels of melatonin and serotonin. Low levels of both cause depression-like symptoms.

Lots of people are affected by SAD at this time every year, but, according to Dr. Norman Rosenthal — who, reports Newsweek, was the “first to describe the syndrome” — anti-Trumpers are especially susceptible to SAD symptoms this year.

That's because stress exacerbates SAD symptoms, and anti-Trumpers are under severe stress.

“You know, people are worried, then you hear that the president is going to annihilate North Korea,” Rosenthal tells Newsweek. “I think these stressors definitely do register more powerfully.”

Anti-Trumpers must also contend with a sizable list of Trump administration accomplishments.

President Trump successfully appointed Justice Neil Gorsuch, a solid conservative, to the Supreme Court, and is the first president to have 12 appellate appointments confirmed by the Senate during the first year of his presidency.

He signed into law the largest tax-reform bill in 31 years — a bill that makes conservatives happy as it makes anti-Trumpers sad.

“In addition to slashing the corporate tax rate from 35 to 21 percent, the landmark legislation cut individual rates for all income tax levels, doubled the child tax credit to $2,000, and dramatically increased the standard deduction,” reports the Washington Examiner.

Trump is slowly dismantling ObamaCare, which drove up premiums and deductibles for millions of middle-class Americans. The individual mandate was repealed as part of Republican tax reform.

Repealing the individual mandate is a big first step toward replacing ObamaCare's complexity with more creative health-care reform strategy that addresses the elephant in the living room: massive costs.

That can be accomplished, in part, by introducing a variety of market-based options that give patients more control over the insurance they choose, the dollars they spend and the health-care decisions they make with their doctors.

Another step toward reducing premiums and deductibles — toward extending high-quality insurance and care to the uninsured and needy — is to tackle massive complexity, and there is growing optimism that Trump may succeed in doing so.

Trump is undoing a variety of costly regulations imposed on the country during the Obama administration — many of these regulations impeded economic growth.

According to the Examiner, the Trump administration has “canceled or delayed more than 1,500 regulations in the first 11 months” and “ultimately cut 22 regulations for each new one enacted (last) year, saving taxpayers billions of dollars over the coming years.”

In any event, some of Trump's “conservative” successes may be a pleasant surprise to conservatives and libertarians, who were not big Trump supporters (I am in this group), but they are extremely unpleasant to progressives — particularly during this bitter-cold winter.

Their SAD symptoms include increased anxiety and irritability. They are eating less and having difficulty falling asleep. They are craving carbohydrates and packing on weight, eating junk food.

So I empathize with you, my Trump-loathing friends. The only hope for you is that Trump's tax and regulation reforms work so well that America's economy enjoys 4-percent growth again.

We'll be so busy depositing our economic windfall in the bank, nobody will have time to suffer SAD symptoms.

Tom Purcell, a freelance writer, lives in Library. His books include “Misadventures of a 1970s Childhood” and “Wicked Is the Whiskey,” a Sean McClanahan mystery. Visit him on the web at Email him at:

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me