Skip to comments.Stressed? Are You Disabled?
Posted on 08/19/2012 10:37:43 PM PDT by Kaslin
Government worker: Do you have a disability?
Mans wife: What does he get if hes disabled?
Government worker: His monthly payments will [double].
Mans wife: Well, then hes disabled.
Government worker (to man): Whats your disability?
Man: Im stressed.
An attorney friend of mine recently overheard the above conversation in a Florida government building. The man, who had just turned 65, was signing up for retirement benefits while his wife stood over his shoulder. I relay the story to illustrate how our government is expanding the definition of the term disability.
Howard Rich explains in his recent Wall Street Journal commentary: Washington isnt broke because the government is inefficient. Its broke because it promises too much. $125 billion in disability payments each yeara number thats increased 17-fold over the past four decades (after adjusting for inflation). [due to the] governments increasingly malleable definition of what constitutes a disability, workers who complain of persistent anxiety and chronic fatigue are now viewed by the government as being disabled.
Basically, if youre stressed, the federal government now considers you to be disabled. But isnt everyone (with a life) stressed? So are we all disabled?
Activities or activity levels that stress one person will energize or relax another. Stress is not only subjective but it is a natural byproduct of pursuing goals more challenging than watching soap operas while soaking in a bubble bath.
Man is a rational creature and so the highest enjoyment that he can achieve is that which fulfills his mind. In Ayn Rands novel Atlas Shrugged, the hero, John Galt, says: Happiness is that state of consciousness which proceeds from the achievement of ones values. But neither life nor happiness can be achieved by the pursuit of irrational whims. the torture of frustration is all he will find, unless he seeks the happiness proper to man.
In other words, man will not achieve happiness by avoiding work because this will lead to a level of mental frustration (stress) that no amount of monthly stipend from the government can ease.
If you desire a career doing what you are passionate about, whether it is civil engineering, painting, teaching, writing, running a small business, software programming or neurosurgery, you must log long hours and encounter stress along the way. Even to achieve fun goals like lowering your golf handicap, completing a triathlon or climbing Mount Everest, you must first put your body through physically agonizing routines. So stress is not a disability. Stress is byproduct of living.
Dr. Lynne Tan of Montefiore Medical Center in New York City tells MSNBC.com health editor Jane Weaver: "Very successful people, rather than feeling disempowered, take the extra stress energy ... and make it into a high-energy, positive situation."
Weaver even cites studies indicating that: by keeping the brain cells working at peak capacity, moderate stress could help prevent Alzheimers and breast cancer. Periodic stress can be good for you; with the right attitude, the hormone surges of stress can be channeled into higher levels of productivity.
Certainly, humans should reduce unhealthy stress from procrastination, depravity, inactivity and unwholesome foods.
But humans would be foolish to eliminate healthy mental challenges in exchange for a monthly stress stipend. I maintain that the human mind is happy when it is operating at full capacitylearning, doing and loving. As Ive written here and here , man is rational and capitalistic behaviors help him achieve happiness. Socialism is irrational and anti-human and therefore causes mental pain (stress) in the form of apathy and envy.
If stress is a disability, why dont we talk about Apple co-founder Steve Jobs as a disabled person? After all, Jobs was extraordinarily stressed at low points in his career, such as when he was ousted from the company he started. And when things went wrong, even as a grown man, he was known to break down in tears.
Yet, nobody thought Jobs was disabled. Everyone, including his competitors, viewed him as successful. Jobs made mistakes. He had some major regrets. But, as he grew older, he learned to channel the energy he got from stress into becoming a thriving entrepreneur and a loving son, father, husband and friend.
Jobs used stress as motivational energy to fulfill his vision of bringing amazing technology to the masses. Despite ample critics, backstabbers and cancer, he built the worlds most valuable company from the ground up. Jobs succeeded where other men fail (think Warren Buffett); he became a billionaire while maintaining his personal and professional integrity.
If youre stressed, the federal government says: No sweat! You qualify for cash from Obamas stash! But if you are relying on Obamas cash to get you through life, please, start sweating. Word on the street is that Obamas bank account is $16 trillion overdrawn.
Meanwhile, I’m a VA serice-connected disabled veteran with hbp, heart disease, edema (can barely walk), diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, deafness, bone spurs, sleep apnea, ED, etc, etc. Guess how many times I’ve been turned down by Soc. Sec. because I’m not disabled?
2ndDivisionVet .. you have to become an alcoholic or drug addict. Walk (or stagger) into an SSA office stoned and voila! You’re in the money!
Some years back we had a client who worked @ SSA and had to reject any number of applicants with claims similar to yours, but if the person was an addict, she had to give him/her the benefit under the ADA. Ticked her off, big time. As it does any sane person.
Well, he worked hard and became a billionaire.
Let's just leave it at that, shall we?
Yet those who have given up looking for jobs are able to get SS without any problems
The author is wrong and right. Stress is subjective. True. There are no standard tests that can validate a person’s claim, or at least ones that are being used this way. We go by what people say. This leaves the door open to fraud.
He is wrong that stress is never a disability. It certainly can be. It can lead to mental break downs and physical health problems. So his example of Steve Jobs is ironic. Stress could very well be what killed him since stress definitely lowers your immunity and ability of your body to fight illness.
I’m sorry to hear this. Hope your wife is doing better. God Bless you.
One of the things I’ve learned this year that amazed me was that the 2010 clarifications of the ADA included classifying those with celiac disease, such as myself and two of my five kids, as disabled. To be sure, it is a crushing thing to get glutened, as we call it, and it lasts for a week to ten days afterward. But I never have thought of it was disabling, so much as a chronic illness. The ways of Congress are strange, somewhat non-sensible, aren’t they?
You should look into this for your celiac patients: http://www.gapsdiet.com/
It really works.
Bad back and depression because of it as the secondary diagnosis is the current winner!
This is the same reason you should never trust a person or politician who says they're for restrictions on abortions with the exception of personal or "mental" well-being of the mother. That give them wiggle room to always find that having a baby will cause the mother stress, or some post-labor depression.
Franky, I find the ways of Congress and the countless federal agencies absolutely appalling. Congressmen ‘give away’ federal benefits for their political benefit, but few serve long enough to see the eventual negative consequences to the country. They themselves never pay the price of their selfish actions taken as office holders. They leave others (taxpayers) holding the bag.