Danger Of Old Leaders ( Cognitive Decline, Cognitive Reserve)

Uploaded 11/15/2023, approx. 28 minute read

If you look at the global political leadership, it increasingly looks as if the inmates of a major geriatric department have broken out and taken over the globe. Everyone is so, so, so unbearably old and decrepit.

I personally think that no one should be elected to a political office after age 16. I will explain why I think so. That would of course exclude me from running for President of the United States.

I am 62 years old.

There is also the minor issue that I have been born in Kenya, sorry, in Israel.

So, joking aside, the danger of old leaders.

Look at the United States for example. Biden is a sprightly 81. Donald Trump is a youthful 77. Viktor Orban in Hungary is a toddler at age 60. Putin is 71 years old and intends to retire at age 90, more or less. Xi Jinping is 70 years old, which in Chinese terms just starting his life.

And Netanyahu, yes, the Netanyahu of Gaza fame is 74 years old.

Not to mention Mitch McConnell and others. This is unsustainable. We are being ruled by people whose cognitive abilities are severely impaired.

And this is the topic of today's video.

Cognitive reserve, cognitive decline and how dangerous it is to be ruled by leaders at this age range of 60 to 90.

Of course, there are arguments to the contrary. For example, what about life experience? People age 60 and 70 and 80 have a lot more life experience than people age 30 or 40.

There is also the fact that cognitive reserve and cognitive decline are determined not only by age, but by many other factors.

And it is utterly conceivable to find someone age 60 who is in a far better cognitive shape than someone age 40.

And finally, there is the fact that some mental disorders ameliorate with age, become better with age.

We are talking about borderline personality disorder, antisocial personality disorder. Other mental health issues become worse with age.

For example, all the kinds of dementias and even narcissistic personality disorder. All the people experience psychosis in paranoia much more frequently than younger people.

There is a jingle jungle fallacy. You heard of it? Okay, look it up. No, no, don't look it up. I'll help you. I'll help you here.

The jingle jungle fallacy is when you use the same word to describe different things. That's the jingle part. Or when you use different words to refer to the very same thing. That's the jungle part.

And when we come to the sciences of aging, there's a lot of jingle jungle.

The ability to process information during decision making does not drop off until age 60.

These are the newest findings, by the way, the cutting bleeding age findings.

The widespread belief that mental speed starts to decline or deteriorate at age 20 is wrong. It's not true. Nothing happens to our ability to make decisions. Nothing happens to our executive functions until age 60.

Michel von Krause, Heidelberg University in Germany, and his colleagues analyzed data collected from around 1.2 million people between the ages of 10 to 80.

And that's what they found.

Now, there's a literature section in the description where I give you further pointers. Feel free to follow up.

An article titled "A Framework for Concepts of Reserve and Resilience in Aging" was published in Neurobiological Aging. It's a magazine, academic magazine, in April 2023.

It says, "The study of factors that allow some individuals to age more successfully than others, including, for example, genetics and life exposures, has important implications for individual well-being as well as health education, policy and intervention.

Moreover, identifying factors that are relevant across species, humans and non-humans, politicians, for example, is fundamentally necessary to facilitate studies of the neurobiological underpinnings of such factors.

Several groups have published proposed nomenclature and operational definitions of concepts, including resilience, cognitive reserve, brain reserve, brain maintenance, compensation, scaffolding, resistance, and so on and so forth.

As you can see, the field is at its inception and there's a god-awful confusion.

But one thing everyone agrees on. As you age, your cognitive abilities, your cognitive capacity, your ability to think and to perceive reality as it is and to make decisions and choices, your self-efficacy deteriorates and declines.

Someone Donald Trump's age or Joe Biden's age, no matter how resilient they are, how resistant they are, how well-kept and well-preserved they are, and I tend to doubt that they are, no matter any of these, do not possess the same acuity, the same mental ability, the same capacity to leverage their innate intelligence, the same probity, the same efficacy, in the sense that they make choices and decisions that secure the most beneficial outcomes.

Biden, Trump, even younger politicians, Putin, Netanyahu, or Biden, many others, are compromised, compromised cognitively.

We have at the helm, we have a ruling class that is, absolutely has problems in dealing with reality, in processing it properly and rendering the right decisions expediently, and this is extremely bad news.

To understand more, we need to delve into several concepts.

Number one is cognitive reserve.

Cognitive reserve is a property of the brain that allows for cognitive performance that is better than expected given the degree of life course related brain changes and brain injury or brain disease.

In other words, everyone has a trajectory of brain development.

Some people have been traumatized, others have abused substances, still others have endured brain trauma, concussions, brain injuries, athletes, for example.

So not everyone has a cognitive reserve.

That is the first myth that we should debunk.

Cognitive reserve is when your cognitive functioning is better than expected. Taking into account all the parameters, and I will discuss the parameters shortly, if you function better than would have been expected, then you have a cognitive reserve.

Cognitive reserve is the property of the brain that refers to multiple potential mechanisms, including molecular mechanisms, cellular mechanisms, network levels, you name it. The totality of brain functioning, pathways, trajectories, interactions between neurons, what's happening inside neurons, because today we know that neurons are much more complex entities than we have thought.

These mechanisms in the brain, by the way, this doesn't help with cognitive reserve and leads to cognitive decline.

The concept I will discuss shortly.

Cognitive decline tastes wonderful.

Okay, Shoshanim! The working hypothesis in cognitive reserve is that there are mechanisms in the brain that help us to cope or to compensate for inevitable attrition and depreciation of the hardware, the wetware. Our brain degenerates all the time. 100,000 cells die daily every year since age 20.

So there are consequences of disease, brain injury, even the gut microbiome affects the brain. Sleep, how much sleep you're getting up to six hours is okay, but less than six hours, four hours, three hours a day begins to be a problem.

So when you take all this into account, the brain develops all kinds of mechanisms to kind of compensate for this.

These mechanisms are biological or cognitive and they are always experimental. It's a trial and error thing. The brain always experiments, trying to find solutions when there's a blockage there, a destroyed area here, a ruined pathway, a problem the brain tries somehow to circumvent it. Even damage to entire parts of the brain is usually compensated for in other parts of the brain, even exceedingly traumatic brain injuries.

So cognitive reserve is better than expected.

Cognitive performance measured longitudinally across all these mechanisms and cognitive reserve probably is heavily influenced by genetic factors, but also by environmental factors.

At various points across the lifespan, our genes are expressed, they kicked in epigenetically, epigenetically speaking. At other points, our environment dictates our reactions.

See my watch my video on the IPAM model, the intra-psychic activation model.

So the confluence of the hardware, which is the genes, and the software, which is the brain and the environment, this confluence generates cognitive functioning. And if this cognitive functioning is better than expected, then you have a cognitive reserve.

Now we can't measure cognitive reserve directly, but we have proxies.

For example, all kinds of endowments, life experiences, early age IQ, cognitively stimulating exposures across a lifespan, activity, brain activity across the age span, how active are you intellectually, education, a major determinant by the way, education is a major determinant of cognitive reserve, occupational exposures, leisure activities, social networks, other hypothesized or discovered exposures, and so on.

In short, cognitive reserve is a relational construct. It is ever shifting, it's in flux, it goes up and down, you may lose it and regain it depending what you do with your brain.

The more you exercise your brain via education, continued education, reading, writing, even watching movies, the more you keep your brain active, the more likely you are to develop a modicum of cognitive reserve, behavioral training, physical exercise, environmental enrichment, social housing, diet, all of these determine cognitive reserve.

Now, this is cognitive reserve. Brain maintenance is something completely different. Brain maintenance is the relative absence of changes in neural resources or neuropathologic change over time as a determinant of preserved cognition in older age.

So let me explain this. You're old, you've reached a certain age, 60, 70, 80. If there is an absence of change in your neural resources, or if there is some pathology in your brain, but your overall condition is preserved, that is brain maintenance.

So while cognitive reserve is superior cognitive functioning, taking into account all your data, brain maintenance is stable cognitive functioning, neurologically speaking, stable brain functioning, taking into account your age and other brain pathologies that may occur.

Brain maintenance is affected by multiple genetic and environmental factors across the lifespan.

The third concept we need to discuss is brain reserve.

The brain reserve is not cognitive reserve.

In the literature, especially self-styled experts online, there's a god-awful confusion between all these.

So listen well and carefully. Brain reserve is a neurobiological status of the brain, number of neurons, synapses, and so on at any given point in time. Brain reserve does not involve active adaptation of functional cognitive processes in the presence of injury or disease.

Cognitive reserve is about adapting to disease or injury and having the upper hand, winning over the disease or the injury, overcoming it, and still remaining functional cognitively. That is cognitive reserve over and above what could have been or should have been expected.

Brain reserve is simply the status of the brain. The physical hardware level status, the machine language status of the brain. It's not about adaptation, it's not about functioning, it's not about cognitive resources, it's not, there's nothing to do with injury or disease or whatever.

So we have these three concepts.

Another article which I refer you to is "Lost and Found in Translation", again in neurobiological aging. They deal there with what Stern called cognitive or mental reserve.

Stern is a father of the concept of cognitive reserve. It's known also as mental reserve.

Again, remember the distinction between cognitive reserve and brain reserve, which is the brainchild of Robert Cusman.

So what these people have done, what these scholars have done, they studied the brains of elderly residents of care homes post-mortem after these people have died.

They extracted the brain and they discovered, they made a few discoveries about the correlation between plaques and Alzheimer's and so on and so forth. And yet they found out that even brains which were riddled with plaque and should have been essentially demented, should have had dementia, should have developed the equivalent of Alzheimer's or some other disease, these brains were actually very efficient cognitively.

The people whose brains were studied were at the top 20 performance, cognitive performance in the care homes.

So they began to understand that the physical condition of the brain is not the only parameter. It's not even maybe a determining parameter as to your cognitive functioning, your cognitive reserve.

And later on I will discuss cognitive decline.

It's not only about the brain. One could even go as far as saying it's not about the brain at all.

Activities that simulate cognitive processes in the brain increase levels of certain proteins, the most famous of which is known as NRN1.

And these proteins encourage a formation of new synapses or preserve existing synapses.

So Stern said, "I think the mechanism works similarly to your muscles and exercise."

So throughout life if you continue to read and stay intellectually and socially engaged, you stimulate your mind much like you would stimulate your body doing exercise.

And this became the mantra. This became the touchstone, the benchmark.

So we have had these experts telling us that if we were to exercise our brains, study a new language, read books, etc., we are likely to not suffer or to not develop dementia in later life.

Today we know better. That's not precisely accurate. We do know, however, I think beyond any doubt, that education, especially higher education, higher level education, it correlates with lower levels of cognitive decline and lower risk of dementia.

These are studies by Meng and Darcy as early as 2012.

The protection has been substantiated time and again with multiple research teams all over the place, one of the few properly replicated studies.

So we have Albert as early as 1995, we have Butler in 1996, we have Chodosh and so on in 2002, we have Christensen in 1997, Liketzos and others in 1999, Farmer in 1995, Jadon in 2014 and so on, like numerous studies. All of them show education, early life education actually, university, college is a strong determinant in your level of cognitive decline and cognitive reserve.

I keep mentioning cognitive decline and this leads us to the opening statements of this video because even when you have cognitive reserve, you cannot avoid cognitive decline, period. Everyone goes through cognitive decline.

Now, there's cognitive decline in various speeds. Someone can decline precipitously and with alacrity and another person can decline very slowly and so cognitive decline is a relative thing but at age 81 or 74 or 77, cognitive decline is massive, damaging.

These leaders are working with half a brain, I'm sorry to say. They are still eloquent, Biden is quite eloquent, he has the gift of gab, Trump can never put more than four words together so he has nothing to do with age but eloquence, reactive capacity, they are not indicators or not solely indicators of cognitive ability. All these leaders suffer from massive cognitive declines.

This cognitive decline is age dependent, largely, and has nothing to do with cognitive reserve or brain maintenance or brain reserve. It's an unrelated concept.

So you could maintain a cognitive reserve to your dying day and still you would be declining but you would be declining less than other people your age and that would give you a cognitive reserve.

But the cognitive decline is inevitable.

Now, cognitive decline makes it difficult to think. It's a difficulty in thinking, in memory, in concentration. Brain functions are disrupted, it creates cognitive impairment, it could be sudden, it could be gradual, it could be permanent, it could even be temporary but it's ineluctable.

So there's no way to reverse it that we know of at this stage and it's very scary to witness and behold.

There have been incidents with Joe Biden, with Mitch McConnell, with Donald Trump, with Netanyahu, with others where you clearly see that something is wrong.

Putin even recently, you clearly see that something's wrong. They need, it's like they need to stop and think twice or three or four times before they talk, before they respond, before they act, before they decide, before they make a choice.

Cognitive abilities are the mind's function.

So it is the mind that is deteriorating. We today know that emotions are full of cognition. Emotions are directional cognition, cognition that has to do with with others or with objects, cognition is directed outward but it's still a form of cognition.

So even emotionally, these people are declining, they're becoming less and less functional emotionally.

Many old people become dysregulated emotionally. This is very common for example in neurodegenerative diseases such as all the dementias. Anyone who has had the misfortune of cohabiting with the parent who is suffering from Alzheimer's know how aggressive and violent and dysregulated they are.

The brain is a piece of hardware. It's an object. It is worn down, it erodes, it corrodes exactly like any other object. We change our smartphones every few years. Imagine you carry your brain with you 60-70-80 years. Imagine in which state it is. It's totally used.

So increasing forgetfulness is very common. Thinking longer when you want to say something or recall someone's name or a fact.

So few of the most common signs of cognitive deficits that I've observed in multiple liters throughout the world is forgetting things more often. Forgetting important engagement, engagements, appointments, obligations, rituals, ceremonies, steps you have to take, the choreography of your office, losing a train of thought and freezing in mid-sentence, conversations, inability to recall the plots of books or movies, or records, files, documents that you've read. Feeling increasingly overwhelmed by having to make decisions, by having to plan steps to accomplish a task, failing to understand instructions, experiences in difficulty, finding your way around familiar environments.

I have seen some blood curdling and blood-chilling scenes when very elderly liters couldn't find their way around.

Memorial, for example. Becoming more impulsive, showing increasingly poor judgment, more aggressive, more violent, more vindictive, more vicious.

Donald Trump's recent speech about the vermin and concentration camps and so on comes to mind. And everyone around you notices, pays attention. It's visible, it's discernible. It's not something that is between you and yourself, but you can't hide it anymore.

There's challenges with memory, with thinking, with other brain processes.

Now, cognitive decline is not the same as cognitive deficit and is not the same as cognitive distortion. Cognitive distortion is a misperception or interpretation of reality in a way that is egosyntonic, in a way that is gratifying, comforting, anxiety reducing, and zelect.

Cognitive deficit is a serious inability to function cognitively, usually in a specific area, with a specific angle. Cognitive decline is overall, it's a systemic thing. Everything is affected. The mind is decaying, degenerating.

Now, it is the outcome of age. I'm repeating this, an inexorable outcome of age.

All old people are cognitively declined, myself included.

I catch myself, often cognitively declining.

It is also affected by medication, by blood chemistry, kidney dysfunction, liver dysfunction, problems with hormones.

So, if you see someone who is inordinately overweight or obese, that's a bad indication.

Vitamin deficiencies, delirium, confused thinking, reduced awareness of one's surrounding, is a hallmark of cognitive decline, which is more neurobiologically and genetically rooted, grounded.

Now, I have definitely seen several politicians in the state of delirium. It was a passing delirium, it was a few minutes delirium, but it was there. There's no question about it.

Psychiatric conditions can cause cognitive decline, problems with memory, with thinking, with concentration. If you've experienced depression or anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, narcissistic personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, all these forms of mental illness are contributing factors to cognitive decline, especially pronounced with narcissists, by the way.

Narcissists, to start with, have a fantasy defense and an impaired reality testing. They have a cognitive distortion of grandiosity. So, their cognitive decline leads to a total disconnect from reality that is exceedingly dangerous. We've seen it, for example, with Adolf Hitler.

Now, substance abuse, injury. So, injury could be external, like in athletics, could be internal, a stroke, which causes vascular damage to neurons, head injuries, and so on and so forth, injury of any kind.

I mentioned neurodegenerative conditions, so Alzheimer's disease, Lewy body disease, Parkinson's. Any frontal temporal degeneration, any damage or loss of nerve cells in the brain can lead to cognitive decline.

And finally, of course, toxins like air pollutants, heavy metals, contaminants, drinking water, pesticides, and so on and so forth.

But cognitive decline is accelerated also by medical conditions. Such as diabetes, smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, being overweight, depression, lack of physical exercise, a low education level, lack of mental engagement or socially stimulating activities, and so on and so forth.

I'll read to you a summary from the Handbook of Clinical Neurology published in 2019.

This is a chapter titled "Gereiatric Neurology" by Jason Cohen and Joe Verghese.

Cognitive decline says, say the authors, cognitive decline and neurodegenerative disease have been implicated in gait dysfunction via disturbance of top-down control mechanisms.

So, they connect cognitive decline even to body language, even to gait the way we walk.

If you observe the body language of older politicians, it is evident that they are cognitively declined. All of them, by the way, no exception.

There's a serious problem with body language. That's why old people have a different body language to young people. They even smell differently, by the way.

Old people are not the same as young people. Old people are not young people over time. Old people are a different species. They are subspecies.

It is exceedingly, exceedingly dangerous and worrying that the overwhelming vast majority of the global population, if we take into account Africa and parts of Asia, the overwhelming majority of the global population are under age 40, and the overwhelming majority of politicians are over age 60.

Imagine that the situation would have been reversed. Imagine that the overwhelming majority of the population would be above age 60, and the rulers and presidents and prime ministers would have an average age of 20.

Can you conceive of such a situation? It's wrong, obviously, and it's wrong. It's wrong when we are ruled by old people who are declining cognitively, some of whom clearly do not have a cognitive reserve and have not been maintaining their brains.

Now, in the vast majority of cases, luckily for us, we're talking about MCI. MCI is mild cognitive impairment. It is a stage between an expected decline in memory and thinking that happens with age and the most serious decline of dementia. MCI includes problems with memory, language, and judgment.

People with MCI may be aware, and I'll discuss this in a minute, they are aware that they're having problems with memories, memory, and that their mental functioning is slipping somehow.

I, for example, am fully aware of my cognitive decline. My memory is not what it used to be. I'm having difficulties with language that I never used to have, and so on and so forth.

Family and close friends also notice changes, but these changes in MCI are not bad enough to impact daily life or usual activities, and that's where politicians slip.

That's the crack through which politicians slip.

Politicians are slippery characters, so they have mild cognitive decline or mild cognitive impairment. They know it, but they can still get by. They can still pull it off somehow, and they're lying. They're simply lying to us.

MCI increases the risk of dementia caused by Alzheimer's or other brain disorders.

Some people with MCI, mild cognitive impairment, never get worse. Others, very few, get better. The majority do get worse.

The brain, we have to acknowledge, changes with age and not for the better.

All of us become more forgetful as we age. We have difficulties coming up with a word. It's the tip of our tongue. We can't come up with it. We forget people's names, dates, birthdays. I don't know what.

So to pretend that politicians are the only class of human beings exempt from cognitive impairment and cognitive decline is counterfactual and ridiculous, frankly.

The problem is that cognitive decline and cognitive impairment almost invariably lead or result in depression, anxiety, aggression, violence, impatience, short temper, lack of interest, and grandiosity, compensatory grandiosity. And of course, lying. It's immoral. In many ways, it's immoral.

These people are liars.

So we need to think what to do. There are so many things that are wrong.

For example, parenting is not licensed. Anyone can become a parent. That is shocking. When everything else is licensed, parenting, which is the most important function in the universe, is not.

Similarly, politicians should be subjected to mental health screening. Not everyone should be able to become a politician.

There are so many wackos and nutcases. I mentioned Donald Trump. It's only one case. That's dangerous.

And collectively, the entire political echelon of class is too old to rule, as simple as that.

There have been studies that correlated mild, mild cognitive impairment with changes in the brain, clumps of beta amyloid protein, plaques, tangles of tau proteins. They're very common in cognitive impairment. Lewy bodies, which usually lead to Parkinson's disease, somehow correlatedconnected with Parkinson's disease. Many of these people suffer from hundreds of small strokes, reduced blood flow through blood vessels to the brain. Decreased size of hippocampus is common in all people. The fluid field spaces in the brain, known as ventricles, expand pretty dramatically sometimes. And the use of glucose in key brain regions declines. The brains of all people are starved, simply starved. There's no energy there for the cells of the brain. And the number one risk factor for cognitive impairment is age. Age is a number one risk factor.

There's another risk factor. It's a gene. It's known as APOEE4. And it's linked somehow to Alzheimer's. But having the gene doesn't necessarily translate into a decline in thinking and memory, while age always does, always does.

So I think it's about time that we implement strict restrictions and limitations on the age of politicians.

Now let me read you, in a minute I will read to you some statistics, because you could say, how statistically prevalent is it? Is it a real threat? Like if only one of a thousand people cognitively is cognitively impaired or declines, then why not have politicians age 93?

But if it is a widely incident and prevalent phenomenon, then we are putting in the White House, in Downing Street, in I don't know, we're putting in the orders of power people who should be disqualified, should not be there, and represent a clear and present danger. Downing Street is the exception, by the way.

Okay, about one to three percent of adults develop dementia every year. Ten to fifteen percent of people who display visibly cognitive deficits and cognitive decline, ten to fifty percent develop dementia every year.

There's something called subjective cognitive decline, SCD. It is a self-reported experience, the way I just did on this video, self-reported experience of worsening, more frequent confusion or memory loss. SCD is a form of cognitive impairment and you would never catch a politician with SCD because they never admit to the decline in their cognitive functions.

Witness Mitch McConnell's disgusting, disgusting denial of the fact that he's decaying and decomposing on camera.

So, SCD is rare, it is self-reporting. It doesn't imply that the self-reporting is accurate.

The reasons may be different, for example, diabetes presents a similar clinical picture, but still it's an alarm bell. It means that a person should be checked.

Cognition is not a single process. Cognition is a multiplex of processes in the brain. It includes learning, remembering, making judgments, collating things, creating models, frameworks, algorithms, mathematical equation, everything.

Cognitive ability is closely correlated with overall health, by the way.

Cognitive decline can be mild or could be extreme like in dementia. It could interfere with daily life or not. It always interferes with decision-making, executive functions.

The problem with cognitive decline, it hampens the performance of routine tasks. If your routine task as a politician is to make decisions, including life-threatening decisions, go to war, I don't know, then it's a huge problem because that's exactly where cognitive decline and impairment have the maximal impact.

The numbers are terrifying. The statistics, for example, the prevalence of self-reported cognitive decline, which is very rare as I thought, is one in nine adults. The prevalence of self-reported cognitive decline among adults age 65 and older is even higher.

Men and women, by the way, report it almost identically, a slight edge when it comes to men, but almost identically. The prevalence is a bit lower among white people, a bit higher among blacks, African Americans, Hispanics, and very low among Asians and Pacific Islanders.

Remember, this is self-reporting.

Cultural considerations, societal stigma, they come into play.

So in some cultures, it's shameful to admit that you're cognitively declining or cognitively impaired. People who live alone, who are not educated, are more prone to self-report because they need help.

About one third of people who self-report cognitive decline live alone, for example.

So confusion, memory loss, grappling for words, forgetting things, names, dates, what you should do, disorientation, spatial, temporal disorientation. I don't know where you are. You don't know what date is, etc.

It's more common than you know. About half of a half shocking number of adults aged 45 years or older reported symptoms of confusion and memory loss. Half.

And this means that the likelihood that older politicians are actively and effectively suffering for cognitive impairment, cognitive decline, changes to their brains which are damaging and ruinous, these chances are pretty high.

Pretty high statistics, pretty clear. This is especially true if you have some other type of chronic mental chronic illness like diabetes or high blood pressure which are very common. About two thirds of people with diabetes, heart condition, heart failure, chronic condition, two thirds develop cognitive impairment and cognitive decline.

And this creates a lot of distress. These people report stress, depression, emotional problems, and this is a syndrome. It's known as FMD, frequent mental distress.

And these episodes of mental distress owing to a decline in cognitive functioning can last up to a month. They're not short. They're debilitating.

We know, for example, the Churchill who was a geriatric leader suffered these bouts of depression and anxiety which were exacerbated dramatically by his cognitive decline. Same with Menachem begging the Jewish, the Israeli, I'm sorry, Prime Minister in the 70s and 80s.

And so even politicians react with depression and anxiety to these developments which are terrifying. They're subjectively terrifying. Like it leads to something called estrangement. You don't know yourself anymore.

And there's a lot of anger, self-directed anger, because you feel that, you know, it shouldn't happen. You rail against yourself, against the world, creates a lot of aggression, a lot of rage.

And this is not the right mental landscape and ambience that should characterize a leader, a politician in these extremely mentally ill and troubled times.

This period in history, which is unprecedented as far as the disintegration of human consensus in human societies, in this period of history, we need people who are relatively mentally well, mentally healthy, stable, a safe pair of hands, secure base, grounded, centered with a stable sense of self-worth, aware of their self-aware, their limitations and strengths, capable of working with other people, not cognitively distorted, not cognitively impaired, and definitely not encumbered with a mild form of dementia known as cognitive decline or cognitive impairment, which is typical to all old people at their age.

So no, there is no old politician who is cognitively perfect, cognitively firm.

They're all in the throes of cognitive decline and impairment, and we are paying the price.

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Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the importance of choosing the right words when trying to help someone dealing with depression and anxiety. He emphasizes the need to avoid minimizing or invalidating the person's experiences and to respect their individuality. Vaknin advises against using cliches and instead encourages active listening and empathy. He warns against being overly optimistic or trying to "fix" the person, and stresses the importance of providing companionship and support without imposing one's own views or judgments.

Watch This to Make Sense of the World

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the history of politics and the role of elites in subjugating the masses. He explains how the elites use psychological manipulation techniques on the masses via the middle class and divide religions and philosophical systems into three options. He also discusses the geopolitical implications of the pandemic, including the decline of the United States and the rise of China and Russia. He advises small countries to adopt a neutral stance between East and West and encourages people to opt out, minimize consumption, and fight back through civil disobedience and passive resistance.

Vaccination Primer and COVID-19 Good News

Sam Vaknin discusses various topics, including his background, medical studies, offers he received, and the pandemic. He delves into vaccines, the immune system, and the potential COVID-19 vaccine. He expresses caution about universal vaccination and advocates for thorough clinical trials.

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