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 info@keithablow.com

An Afghan interpreter who helped save then-Sen. Joe Biden's life in 2008 was among those stranded in Afghanistan after Biden's troop withdrawal. He has now escaped the country with his family, but not with President Biden's help.

Thanks to private organizations, including The Nazarene Fund, the interpreter and his family have now been rescued.

Watch the video clip below to hear Glenn Beck share the details:

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A shocking new report by The Daily Wire reveals that the furious father whose arrest at a school board meeting likely sparked the call for the FBI to investigate anti-CRT parents like domestic terrorists was furious for good reasons: The Loudoun County School Board allegedly tried to cover up his daughter's rape.

Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Tuesday to discuss the incident and explain why he joined 60 lawmakers in a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland demanding answers for why the FBI is targeting parents.

"We want to know ... what kind of coordination took place between the White House, activist groups and teachers unions, and the Department of Justice," Stewart told Glenn. "Because we have evidence that there was [coordination] and, in fact, that the White House are the ones who initiated this. They asked for these activist groups to write this inflammatory letter to the Department of Justice saying they were 'intimidated' and that they 'felt threatened', giving the Department of Justice Attorney General Garland, the excuse to say, 'Okay, well, we have to respond'."

Stewart went on to say he believes the federal government would only involve the FBI in such an issue if its purpose is to silence and intimidate parents concerned about the "poison" being taught to their kids in school. So, what can he and the other representatives who disagree with the Biden administration's overreach of power do to stop it?

Watch the video clip below to hear Stewart explain:

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Taiwan's Foreign Minister Joseph Wu is now warning that his nation is preparing for war with China after Beijing flew a record number of warplanes over Taiwanese territory. Wu reached out to another country for help, but it wasn't the United States.

In a video, Wu urged Australia to help prepare for a possible invasion, but gave the U.S. no mention.

"The defense of Taiwan is in our own hands, and we are absolutely committed to that. And if China is going to launch a war against Taiwan, we will fight until the end. And that is our commitment. And, of course, during this period of time, we would like to exchange with other countries for security cooperation," Wu said on ABC News In-depth's China Tonight program. "We would like to engage in security or intelligence exchanges with other like-minded partners, Australia included, so that Taiwan is better prepared to deal with the war situation. And so far, our relations with Australia is very good. And that is what we appreciate it for."

On "The Glenn Beck Program," Glenn, Pat Gray, and Stu Burguiere discussed whether or not America would do anything during such a conflict — because it sure seems like President Joe Biden is more focused on working with China to fight climate change. Plus, why did China just cut off all cryptocurrency?

Watch the video clip below to catch the conversation:

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On "Glenn TV" tonight, Glenn Beck heads to the chalkboard to reveal how the fundamental transformation of America has already begun by turning the Declaration of Independence upside down.

If Donald Trump was a dictator, then what do we call President Biden? In Biden's first nine months in office, he has already issued 64 executive orders – that's more than Trump, Obama, W. Bush, Clinton, Bush, and Reagan each issued in their entire first years in office.

You never hear the Left talk about the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, or the Bill of Rights any more, unless it's to "reimagine" the Constitution or slap a "harmful content" warning on our founding documents. Seriously. The National Archives said while its website label wasn't targeting the Constitution specifically, "some of the materials presented here may reflect outdated, biased, offensive, and possibly violent views and opinions." The Left finds basic, guaranteed rights so offensive they now spend all of their time on workarounds to deal with America's annoying founding documents.

Watch the full episode of "Glenn TV" below to see Glenn outline the aggressive unconstitutional abuses "King Biden" is jamming down our throats and teaches Americans how we can defend against presidential tyranny.

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