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Fetterman – There are strokes … and there are strokes

Fetterman – There are strokes … and there are strokes

A lot is being made of the stroke that Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate John Fetterman suffered. 

In addressing strokes, I can speak with some authority – having suffered a minor stroke a couple of years ago.  That fact makes me wonder why Fetterman is not being more transparent with the public.  It is obviously a more serious situation than he is telling voters.  Two facts lead me to that conclusion — his length of hospitalization and home confinement — and his residual debilities.

By comparison, my stroke really was minor.  A awoke one day with an unusual numbness in my left arm.  I immediately knew it was a stroke.  I called my daughter to drive me to the hospital even though I felt capable of driving – just was not sure if it would progress.

I had no cognitive issues (sorry to disappoint my critics), no motor issues, no speech issues – and even the numbness was strange.  My left arm felt numb, but the skin sensitivity was normal to the touch.

Within less than 24 hours, I was released with no follow-up or therapy required.  Back to my normal activities immediately – including tennis, bowling and jumping out of an airplane … oh, and writing and giving speeches.  It was truly a “minor stroke.”  

Fetterman and his people have been using that term to describe his condition, but the results say otherwise.

The issue for Fetterman is whether he can fully perform the activities of a United States senator.  For the most part, it appears he can.  He gets around (but with a noticeable limp) and gives speeches.  He occasionally stumbles over words – but so does President Biden. Hmmmm?

But he apparently has a serious problem comprehending spoken words.  He needs Closed Captions when being asked questions.  His campaign requested the use of the technology for the one debate – having cancelled an earlier debate.  

He used them during a recent interview with Dasha Burns of NBC.  When that was reported as part of the interview — and Burns later said that Fetterman struggled at times – SHE was pounced upon by her partisan colleagues of the Fourth Estate.  Burns apparently forgot that the new role of journalism was to conceal rather than reveal.

As a further defensive move, the Fetterman campaign insisted that the only debate be scheduled within days of Election Day – at a time when more than half the voters may have already cast early ballots.  That does not suggest confidence in Fetterman’s ability to perform ad hoc.

Getting around and being able to speak is just half of a senator’s job – and the smaller half.  A senator must comprehend the spoken words of others – on the floor, in committee meetings, private meetings, public forums, and among constituents.

One of the effects of a stroke can be making words sound garbled – almost like a foreign language.  Is that Fetterman’s problem?  We do not know because he will not release his medical records or allow his doctors to speak to reporters.  That raises legitimate suspicions.

Fetterman defenders point to senators in wheelchairs, with hearing aids, or who have had strokes.  None of that is relevant to Fetterman’s case.  None of them have a comprehension issue.  A senator with hearing loss can wear hearing aids.  Fetterman’s problem is unique.  It has to do with comprehension of verbal language – he will not have access to Close Captions except in rare situations.

Not being transparent will have some negative impact on the Fetterman campaign, but he and his aides have decided that revealing his medical records would be more damaging – and that is what should concern the voters of Pennsylvania.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.


  1. H

    Not being transparent as, say, stating “I grew up just south of Philadelphia” (which is either in the river or in New Jersey)? Or recording your campaign commercials saying you’re a PA resident from your mansion in New Jersey?

  2. frank stetson

    In a typical case of Larry-knows-all, Larry reads the medical mind of Democrats by saying: “In addressing strokes, I can speak with some authority – having suffered a minor stroke a couple of years ago.” Neither Dr. Oz or Dr. Horist can speak with authority about Fetterman’s condition, his recovery, and most importantly —- any long-lasting disabilities. They are not experts; they have not examined their patient. Although, having suffered Larry telling me how crazy I am, I can now speak with some authority about what Larry is thinking.

    “It is obviously a more serious situation than he is telling voters” Larry tells his readers. Is Larry thinking, “I don’t have a clue, neither do they, so I will tell them it’s worse than they thought because he is a Democrat, they are Republican sheeples and that should scare them shitless.”

    “Fetterman and his people have been using that term (minor stroke) to describe his condition, but the results say otherwise” says Dr. Larry who does not have a clue because he is not an expert, just a guy who had a minor stroke. In knowing nothing, not being a doctor, not examining Fetterman, he tells us it’s worse than he thought based on the RESULTS. What results Larry? What you learn in those screeds you read? What you divine by watching FOX TV? You don’t know shit. You have no degree. You can’t mind meld.
    Fetterman’s actual doctor says: “Fetterman is “well compensated and stable” after receiving a defibrillator that he said “is working perfectly.” Dr. Chandra added that it was the cardiomyopathy, a condition that makes it harder for the heart to pump blood to the rest of the body, that was the reason the device needed to be implanted.” ““The prognosis I can give for John’s heart is this: If he takes his medications, eats healthy and exercises, he’ll be fine,” Chandra wrote. “If he does what I’ve told him, and I do believe that he is taking his recovery and his health very seriously this time, he should be able to campaign and serve in the U.S. Senate without a problem. Was that doctor gilding the lily? Absolutely. A paid shill, doubtful. Another expert, Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones, president of the American Heart Association, said that while life with a defibrillator is “very manageable” and Fetterman’s prognosis should be good with it, “a pacemaker and defibrillator is not standard treatment for atrial fibrillation.”

    Lloyd-Jones has not treated Fetterman, opined that “people with atrial fibrillation do not routinely require a pacemaker unless there’s something also potentially happening with the conduction system – the electrical connections of the heart – separate from the atrial fibrillation.” This confirms Larry’s “it’s not a minor stroke,” but also rejects Larry’s “OMG he’s disabled, he can’t sit in Congress.” This is just an example of Larry’s smear campaign against Democrats. It is totally unwarranted, low, mean, and cruel.

    And in the words of Fetterman: “Dr. Mehmet Oz for “cheering on for me not to get better.”

    “Recovering from a stroke in public isn’t easy”

    “But in January, I’m going to be much better—and Dr. Oz will still be a fraud.”

    And Larry will still be Larry. Where’s my Wall-burger?

    • Sam

      The democrats are good at picking people with mental problems

    • DEBBIE

      Frank I find it odd that you would call Dr. Oz a fraud you should know he is a PROFESSOR. a retired CARDEOTHORAORAOCIS SURGEON.HARVARD grad. What has fettrtman done before mayor? if his stroke is that bad unable to read and speak in public, he is not qualified to be a sen. but who am I to judge?afterall look who running our country ! or is it someone else? caught on tape lie after lie.inflation, open boarders putting hard working AMERICANS out of work on his first day in office humman trafficing, drugs,death on the boarder putting illegals before us and our homeless last, kissing the ass of our adversaries,but you are right about one thing it will be better in Jan.a huge RED WAVE one more thing !down with fake news YOU GO FOX pic, tapes,and laptops dont lie but BIDEN does god help us all LETS GO BIG RED from a proud ok. conservative USA PROUD

      • frank stetson

        Debbie, I saw your comments, reviewed my text, and saw it was Fetterman who stated: “But in January, I’m going to be much better—and Dr. Oz will still be a fraud.”

        However, I did say “Neither Dr. Oz or Dr. Horist can speak with authority about Fetterman’s condition, his recovery, and most importantly —- any long-lasting disabilities. They are not experts; they have not examined their patient.” And for that I apologize; I was trying to say Oz did not examine Fetterman, so he can’t really know HIS exact condition and recovery outlook. I quoted two experts who did. Dr. Oz is a smart, well-educated, experienced heart doctor who went to and taught at our best schools. His short career was stupendous and now he sells alternative treatments not exactly in the mainstream or embraced by the entire medical community. Some call him a huckster, fraud, etc., but that should not diminish his early accomplishments which are awesome. As to whether he has killed, I don’t really know the nature of his alternative medicine, thus that is was enough to be asked to leave mainstream hospitals.

        He has no place running as a politician representing Pennsylvania in the US Senate. He has zero experience with governing or Pennsylvania, no matter what party he represents. Fetterman was Lt. Governor, State Senator, Mayor, and holds a couple of Masters, one in public policy from Harvard. He is no slouch and has been working for Pennsylvania for decades. Oz – House maybe, Senate – no way. Fetterman – experienced in government which really counts in the Senate if you want to promote change through action. Now, that’s my opinion, party neutral, that the novices belong in the House, the people’s house. The Senate calls for expertise and experience in the art of lawmaking given our unique processes, procedures, and traditions. IMO. A novice, like Oz, will probably be ineffective in the Senate.

        Debbie, while you were wrong about my calling Oz a fraud, I did mumble mouth my saying he’s not an expert in Fetterman’s condition because he has not examined the patient, even though he is a renowned expert on the ailment. My bad, sorry, could have done that one better.

        As to your vent at the end.

        “Caught on tape lie after lie.” but just a Trumpian fraction….

        “Inflation,” is a global problem, the US version was initiated by Trump’s deficit and debt, the largest in American history, dwarfing anything Obama or Biden have done. With a return of the lowest GDP growth since Herbert Hoover in the recession. That’s what primed our pump. Biden doubled down, Russia capped the oil, and the world was off to the inflation races. A global, shared, problem. And a bad one that may tank Biden’s midterm dreams.

        “open boarders” what stinking open borders? We be finding and deporting more than ever. Yes, there is a surge, yes, people are getting through, but the Trump wall stands, we have more people and higher tech than ever to stop, and they aren’t fucking open, those borders are not.

        “putting hard working AMERICANS out of work on his first day in office” is not true, unemployment is still low

        “human trafficking, drugs, death on the boarder putting illegals before us and our homeless last,” is gobble gook speak without any real facts

        “Kissing the ass of our adversaries,” like Trump did to NK, Russia, etc. What do you think those classified documents were stolen for? Wallpaper? To cover his wall-burgers?

        “YOU GO FOX pic, tapes, and laptops don’t lie but BIDEN does god help us all LETS GO BIG RED from a proud ok.

        conservative USA PROUD” you gotta love it when the privacy team loves to invade opponent’s privacy to steal their private communications, pictures, diary entries in order to win. “I need a favor…..”

        No, I don’t agree with your vent.

        • larry Horist

          Frank Stetson …I did not see you rant about all the Democrats and media folks analyzing Trumps mental conditions. And what but Fetterman’s claim that he will be better in 6 months. If you know the outcomes of strokes, there is no guarantee that a person will fully recover. As doctors advised me … the numb feeling in my arm may or may not go away. The point is that Fetterman has a communications problem … and he has not been fully candid about the extent of his issues or the prognosis. It is up to the voters of Penn to decided if that is relevant. It is no small issue since he currently cannot effectively process audio speech. He will have Closed Captions for his one debate.

          • Frank stetson

            Malarky. I always thought Trump insane but never attempted diagnosis nor agreement with armchair, remote diagnoses.

            I would dribble on about mind reading and thinking you know what others are thinking, but only a complete asshole would do that.

            The experts say he can serve. Many people cope with listening issues. Get over it or pass a law demanding all candidates test for health. And get one for finances too. But quit picking on people who live with disabilities having to compensate for. You’re better than that. Or are you?.

          • larry Horist

            Frank Stetson … Not sure you even comprehend what YOU write….lol. After using thousands of words in scores of comments telling potential readers what you think I think (in the third person, of course), you say that people who do that are (your word) “assholes.” I could not agree with you more. So, wear the shoe that fits.

          • Frank stetson

            Like a third grader you are boomeranging my comment right back at me.

            I mention sources and you fling feces.

            I tell a joke about your proclivities and you say: “no, no, it’s you…”

            Get a grip on yourself.

            Do you really want to take this to the gutter?

  3. debbie

    To Frank i forgot to mention the most important thing about Dr OZ he SAVES LIVES he does’nt KILL THEM take that to the polls

    • H

      Oz hawks snake oil remedies on TV to make boatloads of money. Most of them will not do what he says they will, and a few have turned out to be dangerous. He saved lives when he was a surgeon, now he just profits from peoples fears.