Author: John Cooker
Publisher: Spin Doctor Press
ISBN: 978-0-9835724-0-4

In the Acknowledgments to John Cooker's Cure Your Democracy: The Infection, Spread and Treatment of Contagious Opinions the author thanks his wife Katherine, who has put up with his unconventional sense of humor, which only has encouraged him.

And no doubt, there will be readers that will consider this book truly ridiculous and just plain nonsense. That's a pity, because if they bother to do a little scraping below the surface, they will discover an author that has a unique ability to perceive and express in an ingeniously humorous manner some profound and deep insights concerning human behavior, as well as the dangerous lack of civility that we witness every day in our society. How often are opinions tossed around without any thought or reason and moreover, without valid research or accurate knowledge? We can spot this everyday on the Internet and on various television and radio shows, particularly the talk shows.

Cooker informs us that America is witnessing an epidemic of two contagious viruses that cause ordinary folk to become unfriendly, exhibit temper tantrums, reddened faces, and irritable bowels. He terms these two viruses Democratitus and Democratosis that both share the same DNA causing the same symptoms in the same degree of potency. Unfortunately, no one is safe and many are contaminated with these viruses.

Full blown Democratitus results in stress induced revulsion to Government in any of its forms, which manifests itself in irrational fear and actual physical repulsion. Insofar as Demcratosis is concerned, it is just as serious, as “any endeavor that requires mingling with the People at large or places faith in them causes such revulsion that the accompanying fear paralyzes the infected.”

It is these fears that are the underlying cause of the symptoms. What is more dangerous is our inability to self-detect the symptoms produced by these viruses. To illustrate, Cooke refers to TV host and satirist Steven Colbert who has been infected with the virus in a way that it has induced a drug-like effect of an outsized self-confidence, that appears almost comical. Radio and television news programs are particularly inciting in presenting a format of pros and cons pretending that they are being “balanced” which insures the irritation of both viruses.

Cooker claims to have studied many victims over a period of two years, particularly those who were in constant inflammation and argument, and he maintains that their infection leads directly to varicose veins and conspiracy theories. I don't think the medical profession would come to the same conclusion, however, then again, many in the profession lack the perceptiveness of Cooker or his sense of humor. How about paranoia? We are told that in the case of paranoia the viruses “have absorbed any ability to use rationality, and their sufferers are at the mercy of exaggerated fears that become manifested in a range of aberrations.”

I just loved the chapter dealing with Audio Impairment that kept me in stitches. Cooker blames secretions of dense wax in individuals affected by the viruses. These sufferers hear distorted words resulting in miscommunication. As an example, Cooker brings up Sara Palin's totally mishearing of the proposals during her briefing of a suggested Health Care Reform Bill. Although, as Cooker states, this can be attributed to the cold winters in Alaska without ear muffs and a fondness for shooting loud, high powered rifles at those cunning, craft Alaskan moose. How about Bill Clinton's negative reply when he was asked if he had “inappropriate sex” with Monica? Cooker believes that because of the buildup of wax in Bill's ear, he thought he was asked if he had “inappropriate socks” with her. Other just as hilarious chapters cover the allergic reactions produced by these viruses, the spread, growth and their concentration, their opposing natures, their extreme manifestations, predispositions of certain individuals, the history of these viruses and the treatment necessary to become virus free.

By employing humor, together with exaggeration, embellishment, and the manipulation of words, language and thought, Cooker effectively conveys to his readers larger truths, which incidentally may even compel us to have a good look in the mirror and wonder about our own behavior. Heaven forbid if we should be infected with these viruses! Our family doctor won't have a clue as to how to deal with them. Fear not, read the various treatment steps that Cooker presents to his readers. You won't be sorry.

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