From Pain to Power

By Keith Ablow, MD

Human beings have a kind of psychological Achilles’ heel. We don’t like to experience pain. Sigmund Freud called this reflex to pull away from suffering the “pleasure principle.” Again and again, we candy coat reality, telling ourselves lies about our relationships and our childhoods, as if burying the pain we lived through will make it go away. It never does, of course. It just fuels all the bankrupt strategies human beings employ to try to keep emotional reality at bay—alcoholism, sexual addiction, overspending, getting lost on the World Wide Web.

Buried truths are the roots of depression and anxiety. Ultimately, we all need to be authentic, to look squarely at the complications in our lives, many of them painful ones. It makes us human, connects us to the challenges others face and gives us the insight to make real and lasting changes.

Burying painful facts by using psychological defenses like denial or booze or cocaine or one tumultuous, distracting relationship after another is no different than trying to treat an abscess with pain relievers. The trouble is that the infection gets worse and worse, spreading silently, under cover, until it invades muscle and bone and seeds the bloodstream, then the heart itself. Then a cure is much harder to achieve (if not impossible) and requires far more aggressive measures, like multiple IV antibioticsa, or even surgery, to cut away diseased, dying tissue.

Americans--taken as a whole--have the same tendency, it turns out, to want to avoid economic suffering. After all, seeing our economic circumstances for what they really are would mean having to experience the pain of big businesses—institutions we consider part of our life stories—dissolving. It would mean coming to grips with the fact that decades of non-competitive practices and products from huge companies that have left major industries on life support, when they have no real pulse, anymore. It would mean acknowledging that there are limits to the benefits companies can offer workers. It would mean admitting that politicians ignored timely cures for pathologies in our economy that have now spread to the muscle and bone and, yes, the heart of our great country. It would mean watching neighbors and friends and family members losing their homes because they, the banking system or both lost sight of reality and decided to get “high” on loans that should never have been made, loans that transported home “owners” and mortgage lenders into a euphoria of fake affluence that was as removed from the truth as any high induced by heroin or Ecstasy. It would mean not pretending that 9/11 was anything but what it was: the most horrifying evidence that millions of murderous people in faraway places see our love of liberty and our embrace of compassionate religions as abhorrent to them and, therefore, want to destroy us. It would mean acknowledging that the struggle against such dark forces must be unrelenting and will cost us dearly. It would mean simply this: experiencing pain. And the avoidance of pain is now not only part of our psyches as human beings, but an undeniable part of our national character.

If we are bored, we turn to our iPods or Wii machines to distract us. If we are depressed we rush to take antidepressants to feel happier. If we are panicked we take anti-anxiety agents to feel more secure. When self-esteem eludes our young people, they turn to their bodies for sexual gratification or YouTube for intoxicating glimpses of staged antics. When our own lives worry us, we shift our attention to the PR-driven, fake highs and lows of celebrities.

The path out of the economic and cultural trouble in which we find ourselves lies in resolving to not turn away from the pain at hand. It means inspecting all our actions—including government bailouts of banks and industry and homeowners—to make certain they aren't attempts to simply avoid reality and suffering (which many of them are). It means finding true American character again in our ability to face our problems head on, with open hearts. It means learning again that we can survive anything we do not run from.

If we do less than this, if we luxuriate in medicating ourselves with one economic and political fantasy after another, we will drift further from credible solutions. More, we will create an opening for those with very focused, very real and potentially very destructive, intentions to achieve genuine power in America. Because dodging pain weakens us as individuals and as a people and emboldens those who seek to subjugate individual thought and freedom.

Our battle to face reality is now an internal one we can win by deciding to stop evading it. But reality will have its due, one way or another. The truth always wins. If we cannot wrestle in earnest with our own demons—economic and cultural—we will have to dig deep to find our best selves when we are in worse pain, in even more perilous times.

Keith Ablow, MD is a psychiatrist and Fox News Contributor with offices in Boston and Manhattan. Contact him at

When Bevan Cooney — the former "junior" business partner to Hunter Biden and Devon Archer — went to jail in 2019, investigative reporter and New York Times bestselling author Peter Schweizer thought he'd never gain access to the damning emails Cooney had promised. That all changed three weeks ago when Schweizer was given complete access to Cooney's gmail account.

Schweizer joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Tuesday to describe just some of the business deals revealed within these emails — like Hunter working with an alleged Russian criminal and with Chinese communists to secure their assets, or to secure one-on-one time with his dad, then-Vice President Joe Biden. And all of this new information is completely separate from the emails allegedly discovered on Hunter Biden's laptop recently reported by the New York Post.

"So, I want to make this clear. This [Cooney's emails] has nothing to do with what's on the laptop … It didn't come from [Rudy] Giuliani. It didn't come from anybody else, right?" Glenn asked Schweizer.

"That's absolutely correct," Schweizer confirmed.

He briefly explained how Cooney, a former Los Angeles nightclub owner, is currently serving a prison sentence for his involvement in a fraudulent business bond scheme with Biden and Archer. From prison, Cooney gave Schweizer written permission to access his Gmail account.

"This is really important," he noted. "We're not looking at printouts. Not looking at PDFs. We're actually in his Gmail accounts themselves, sifting through these emails. And there's a shocking amount of information about deals involving China, involving Russia, involving all sorts of things they were trying to pull off."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

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The king of "No Spin" and bestselling author of "Killing Crazy Horse," Bill O'Reilly joined Glenn Beck on this week's podcast to talk about the latest developments in Joe Biden's Ukraine and China corruption scandal. Now that some of the details are finally coming out in the open, does the average Democrat care? Maybe, but the Left doesn't seem to.

O'Reilly argued there's more hatred for President Donald Trump now than in 2016, and that some people hate President Trump so much that they'd rather vote for the "senile, corrupt" Joe Biden.

"Hunter got tens of millions of dollars from Ukraine, from Russia, from China because his father was vice president. I have no doubt in my mind," O'Reilly said. "But the hatred for Donald Trump overrides that in the minds of millions of viewers. They're saying, 'You know, we'd rather have the senile corrupt guy than Trump.'"

Asked by Glenn if any other Republican running for president would be met with the same level of vitriol, O'Reilly answered, "The Left is the Left. They don't like America. The want to redo the Constitution. They want to take some of our freedoms, like the Second Amendment and the First Amendment, and change them. And they want to destroy capitalism and replace it with a big centralized government in Washington that controls the economy … but I'm talking about the folks. I have liberal friends and I say to them, 'Do you not understand that when you vote for Biden, you're voting against your own self interest?'"

Watch the video clip from the full podcast below, or find the full episode HERE:

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In a phone call with his constituents, Senator Ben Sasse (R-Neb) unleashed a torrent of criticisms about President Donald Trump, saying he "flirted with white supremacists," "kisses dictators' butts," and "spends like a drunken sailor."

On the radio program Friday, Glenn said he was disappointed in Sen. Sasse for apparently forgetting all of President Trump's accomplishments. Because, in reality, Trump has accomplished a lot more than many presidents before him.

Then, for anyone who may have forgotten President Trump's achievements — or who simply hate the man so much they've ignored them — Glenn listed just some of the many things this president has achieved during his three and a half years in the White House.

Watch the video below to hear Glenn's message for all the Trump-haters who have forgotten Trump's accomplishments, or you can read Glenn's list HERE:

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President Trump has given us great judges on the lower court, 3 judges far superior than Roberts and other bogus constitutionalists as SCOTUS and one just may turn out to be another Clarence Thomas. He kicked the ass of ISIS and came home.

He got us out of the disastrous Iran deal, killed their head of terror, boxed them in and is currently collapsing their economy while also brokering a Mid East peace deal that everyone said could never happen. He moved our embassy to Jerusalem despite the state department, something no president has done even though they all promised.

Yes, he met with the North Korean Dictator. I hated that, but I also hated the fact that no other president did anything and North Korea kept gaining power. He has gotten Europe to pay their share of NATO, brought the Arabs and the Jews together, while smashing the choke hold of the PLO, and stood up to the Chinese instead of selling them supercomputers (Clinton), accepting lead poison in dog food (Bush), or loving the CCP and taking millions in dirty money (Obama/Biden).

He also has defended religious liberty unlike any other president at least in the last 100 years, and is a true pro-life advocate that unlike most republicans backs it up with action instead of just talk.

President Trump has also opened doors that the GOP was too wussy to even try to open with Hispanics and Blacks. He again didn't pander. He instead cleared the dead wood and opened pathways up so they could get higher education, create jobs, and not get lost in the prison system.

He also has defended religious liberty... and is a true pro-life advocate.

President Trump also took on an economy that had been beaten down, a people who had been told "you didn't build that" and, in fact, Obama and Biden claimed that the economy was "as good as it would ever get," that we would never create jobs in sectors ever again.

President Trump gave us the lowest unemployment rate since 1969 (the year I celebrated my 5th birthday,) the lowest unemployment for Hispanics & Blacks ever, and the first real growth in pay that I can remember.

President Trump then responded to the largest pandemic in 100 years by doing a couple of things I have never seen a president do:

  1. America's biggest capitalist shuts down the entire economy and knowingly puts his re-election at risk in order to save people.
  2. Closes travel with China and Europe, only to be called “racist," "xenophobic" and accused of stirring hatred. Now everyone says they were for it, but he stood alone and took the heat.

When everyone bashed him because they thought he would seize control and become an authoritarian by telling states what to do, or taking control of companies and telling them what to produce, he simply asked the free market to step to the plate, because he trusts the people of this country to do the right thing. By not taking control, he was called a dictator and a Nazi. Meanwhile he has been blamed for the blood bath created by Gov. Cuomo's nursing home policies. They said 2 million would die, best case scenario 200,000 — if we did everything right. Gee, seems that we are now in the time period they told us would be phase two, it seems as though we seem to have hit that "best case scenario" at this point.

While all of this has gone on, President Trump has fought the lies that were started by Hillary Clinton's team to smear him as a Russian operative. It was enabled by the Obama White House and included the DOJ, CIA, Dept of State, FBI, and DNI. Did I leave anyone out? Oh, yeah we are now getting evidence that members of the Pentagon may have been involved as well. Not to mention the so-called "press" and Congress who did things that would embarrass not only "Frank Underwood" but also Kevin Spacey. He has single handedly exposed the press for who they are and have always been. Because of his tweets, personal style and frankly balls of steel, he has exposed those who truly are: "Enemies of the people." I hated that when he first said it, but it is true. Any person or group that knowingly lies to destroy our president, our Constitution and the free market, are not just enemies of the people, they are enemies of the freedom of all mankind.

As someone who didn't support President Trump at first (and that is putting it mildly) I remain honest enough to judge him on his entire record. He is perhaps the only man in America that can and has stood entirely alone, surrounded by enemies, surrounded by those who took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution, who are now actively engaged in destroying it and any elected president who stands in their way.

Personally, I have grown sick and tired of spineless, do nothing, old, corrupt GOP politicians who are either part of the problem or too frightened to stand alone and speak up. The vast majority are all "Sunshine Patriots." History will condemn those who did nothing but complain and whine, while others not only rang the bell, but stood and took the hits, who risked it all and lost money, reputation and perhaps, God forbid, some who gave the ultimate sacrifice to fight the evil that rages so clearly against the light.

100 years from now history will judge all of us. So will our children's children. Most will be forgotten. Those who failed to show up on the battlefield or cower in the trees, will be remembered with shame and disdain. Others like President Trump, I believe will be seen as indispensable.