Bush Derangement Syndrome

Bush Derangement Syndrome

"Bush Derangement Syndrome" ("BDS") is a pejorative political neologism coined by Charles Krauthammer, an American conservative political columnist and former psychiatrist,[1] in a 2003 column. The term has been used in newspaper columns and editorials, on talk radio, by commentators in the mainstream press, including The Washington Post, The New York Times, and Fox News Channel, and in the blogosphere.

In 2008, derived terms such as "Palin Derangement Syndrome" and "Obama Derangement Syndrome" came into use.


Meaning of term

Krauthammer defined Bush Derangement Syndrome as "the acute onset of paranoia in otherwise normal people in reaction to the policies, the presidency — nay — the very existence of George W. Bush".[2][3] While Krauthammer's column was somewhat tongue-in-cheek (e.g., "What is worrying epidemiologists about the Dean incident, however, is that heretofore no case had been reported in Vermont, or any other dairy state"), the term indicates a belief that some extreme criticisms of President Bush are of emotional origins rather than based on facts or logic. The term has been widely adopted by other writers in the political arena.[4][5][6]


Variants / spinoffs

  • The Washington Times columnist Richard Haddad suggested that a similar term, "Bush-hating disorder", be used, defining it as "a condition in which a person feels and expresses a degree of antipathy toward former U.S. President George W. Bush that is grossly out of proportion to any remark, proposal, or action of the former President, or to any combination of such or to the sum of Mr. Bush's weaknesses as the leader of his country."[7]
  • The term Palin Derangement Syndrome (PDS) began to be used in the blogosphere in 2008.[8][9] It has also been used in reference to reviews of Sarah Palin's best-selling memoir, Going Rogue: An American Life.[10]
  • Clinton Derangement Syndrome (CDS) relates to irrational criticism of Bill and Hillary Clinton.[11][12] At the time, "Clinton crazies" was the term more frequently used.[13][14][15]
  • Obama Derangement Syndrome (ODS) is used to describe criticism of Barack Obama such as the Obama citizenship controversy; it has been used by political commentators such as David Horowitz as well as by reporters such as ABC News' Jake Tapper.[16][17][18][19] A related term with similar meaning is Baracknophobia (a portmanteau of the words "Barack" and "arachnophobia"), which was originally coined in 2008 by political satirist Jon Stewart on The Daily Show. Stewart jokingly defined the term as "an irrational fear of hope."[20]

See also


  1. ^ "Charles Krauthammer Biography". The Washington Post. 1998. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/opinions/krauthammer.htm. Retrieved July 19, 2011. 
  2. ^ Krauthammer, Charles (December 5, 2003). "The Delusional Dean". The Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn?pagename=article&contentId=A37125-2003Dec4. Retrieved 2007-10-11. 
  3. ^ Mosely, Brian (2007-09-08). "Putting the blame on Bush". Shelbyville Times-Gazette. http://www.t-g.com/story/1252574.html. Retrieved 2007-09-10. 
  4. ^ Mosely, Brian (2005-12-31). "Culture, Bush-bashing and more". Shelbyville Times-Gazette. http://www.t-g.com/story/1133592.html. Retrieved 2007-09-10. 
  5. ^ Gibson, John (2007-01-16). "Bush Haters' 'Derangement Syndrome'". Fox News. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,244028,00.html. Retrieved 2007-09-10. 
  6. ^ "FISA and Bush Derangement Syndrome". editorial (Washington Times). 2007-08-06. http://www.washingtontimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070806/EDITORIAL/108060002/1013. Retrieved 2007-09-10. 
  7. ^ Haddad, Richard (January 23, 2009). "Bush-hating disorder - A pathology for our time". The Washington Times. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jan/23/bush-hating-disorder/. Retrieved 2009-01-28. 
  8. ^ Michelle Malkin (October 5, 2008). "P.D.S. on NBC’s Sunday Night Football". http://michellemalkin.com/2008/10/05/pds-on-nbcs-sunday-night-football/. Retrieved 2008-11-26. 
  9. ^ Matthew Balan (September 26, 2008). "CNN’s Jack Cafferty Exhibiting Palin Derangement Syndrome". NewsBusters. http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/matthew-balan/2008/09/26/cnn-s-jack-cafferty-exhibiting-palin-derangement-syndrome. Retrieved 2008-11-26. 
  10. ^ "Sarah Palin Stirs Up Interesting Commentary About Her Book". Fox News. November 17, 2009. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,575493,00.html. 
  11. ^ Glenn Harlan Reynolds (November 4, 2008). "Whoever Wins, Chill A Bit". Forbes. http://www.forbes.com/2008/11/04/hate-presidential-election-oped-cx_ghr_1104opedreynolds.html. Retrieved January 29, 2008. 
  12. ^ Kevin Drum (November 12, 2007). "CDS". The Washington Monthly. http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2007_11/012491.php. Retrieved January 29, 2008. 
  13. ^ Michael Isikoff, Uncovering Clinton: a reporter's story, Crown Publishers, 113, 1999.
  14. ^ Philip Weiss, Clinton Crazy, New York Times, February 23, 1997.
  15. ^ Philip Weiss, Hillary's Baggage: A Story From My Former Life as a Clinton-Hater, Mondoweiss blog, May 26, 2006.
  16. ^ Obama Derangement Syndrome. Political Punch. Published November 10, 2008.
  17. ^ Why Hasn't Obama Fixed Everything Yet? By David Knowles. AOL News: Political Machine. Published Jan. 22, 2009.
  18. ^ Get over Obama derangement syndrome. By David Horowitz. The Politico. Published November 8, 2008.
  19. ^ Has Obama Derangement Syndrome Arrived? By Robert Stacy McCain. Pajamas Media. Published January 28, 2009.
  20. ^ June 16, 2008: Headlines - Baracknophobia. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Retrieved May 20, 2009.

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