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February 14, 2017

Quick Insomnia Update Plus Flynn's Resignation and Why I'm Reasonably Happy About It

I wanted to thank everyone for their suggestions on dealing with insomnia.

A couple of commenters mentioned making the bedroom as cold as possible. I always preferred a cold room for sleep, but I didn't realize that the body takes cold as a sign that it's night and therefore that it's time to sleep. This video mentions that head-caps filled with circulating cold water helps people sleep quickly and deeply; I didn't have a head-cap filled with circulating cold water, but I did throw a cold compress on my pillow (wrapped in a cloth).

I don't know if that helped because I was attempting six different things at once, but I'll tell you, I think it worked, because within minutes of putting my head on that cold compress I wanted to sleep, even though it had been my plan to read for an hour before knocking off.

Oh, and apparently cold baths before bed do wonders for signalling the body to sleep, and, surprisingly, so do hot baths. The latter actually works to cool you down because, after emerging from the bath, your body cools down in response to the exogenous heat, and also just generally loses heat through steam. But you need to give yourself like a half hour or forty minutes to cool down if you want to use the hot bath for sleep-inducing purposes.

I didn't try that yet but might try it tonight. I'm curious about the cold bath strategy but that sounds a lot like torture.

I got to bed reasonably early. Got up a bit late, but I needed the catch-up sleep. I did immediately blast myself in the face with a wake-up light (strong blue light helps re-set the body clock by signalling the eyes and thus the brain that it's daytime). I don't know if that worked yet; I guess I'll know tonight, given that the idea is that the light should cause the body to start to get sleepy about 16 hours later. Thanks to commenters for mentioning delayed sleep phase disorder, which I must surely have. (And which light therapy is often effective in curing or at least mitigating.)

Anyway, I got some sleep. Not really totally awake because of sleep debt and that jet-lag feeling of changing sleep hours. But I hope by the weekend I've got a regular sleeptime.

To add a little news here, let me just get out of the way the obligatory news that's already old news: Around 11 pm last night (when I was already in bed), Mike Flynn resigned. It's suggested that the main reason for the resignation was that he had lied to Vice President Pence about the substance of his discussion with the Russian official. There's also chatter that Yates (the Obama AG holdover who refused to defend Trump's travel EO), Clapper, and Brennan had previously tried to warn Trump that Flynn was "blackmailable" by the Russians.

And oh boy, do those three subverters of democratically-elected government officials have a huge supply of credibility in my book.

Incidentally, I hear the loss of Flynn is no great loss anyway. Natsec people I know complain about him a lot. Yes, he famously broke with Obama. But there was a reason Obama appointed him in the first place -- he shares most of the assumptions of other liberal defense wonks, and (I hear, can't confirm) he or his people have worked to keep out more conservative people out of key natsec positions.

Like, there's a whole coterie of people who think saying "The Muslim Brotherhood is potentially dangerous and should not be placed into key natsec roles" is some kind of extremist rhetoric that can't be tolerated.

Actually, I hear that a lot of Trump's picks are kinda liberal-ish on foreign policy so there's a lot of resistance to letting the Barbarian Infidels into the city from a lot of different people, but I gotta think Flynn was either one of the gatekeepers or could have chosen to overrule other people keeping out clear-eyed conservatives, but chose not to.

To be honest, I've wanted him out of there since the transition.

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posted by Ace at 11:15 AM

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