Republican presidential contender Jeb Bush on Saturday rebutted Donald Trump’s relentless mocking of him as a “low-energy” candidate, telling congregants of a Westhampton Beach synagogue of 16-hour campaign days crisscrossing the country.
“If you’ve been following the campaign, there’s a candidate that says that some candidates are idiots and some candidates are this and some candidates are that,” Bush said at the Hampton Synagogue. “I’ve been apparently the candidate that has low energy. So I’ll just give you a little taste of the low-energy candidate’s life this week.”
Bush recited a long list of cities he’s visited in the past six days, boasted of a “physical therapy workout” Friday with former Navy SEALs and said he would be jetting to North Carolina after his speech.
“The low-energy candidate this week has only been six days, 16 hours a day, campaigning with joy in my heart,” the former Florida governor said.
A friend of mine who knows a lot more about political campaigning than I do pays close attention to where the multitudinous GOP candidates are based out of because convenient travel is expensive and airline travel is tiring. The worst is probably California, which may explain why Carly Fiorina has relocated to Alexandria, VA.
From the WSJ:
The Sleepless Elite
Why Some People Can Run on Little Sleep and Get So Much Done
By MELINDA BECK
Updated April 5, 2011 12:01 a.m. ET
For a small group of people—perhaps just 1% to 3% of the population—sleep is a waste of time.
Natural “short sleepers,” as they’re officially known, are night owls and early birds simultaneously. They typically turn in well after midnight, then get up just a few hours later and barrel through the day without needing to take naps or load up on caffeine.
They are also energetic, outgoing, optimistic and ambitious, according to the few researchers who have studied them. The pattern sometimes starts in childhood and often runs in families.
While it’s unclear if all short sleepers are high achievers, they do have more time in the day to do things, and keep finding more interesting things to do than sleep, often doing several things at once.
Nobody knows how many natural short sleepers are out there. “There aren’t nearly as many as there are people who think they’re short sleepers,” says Daniel J. Buysse, a psychiatrist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and a past president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, a professional group.
Out of every 100 people who believe they only need five or six hours of sleep a night, only about five people really do, Dr. Buysse says. The rest end up chronically sleep deprived, part of the one-third of U.S. adults who get less than the recommended seven hours of sleep per night, according to a report last month by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
I do best on about 8.25 to 8.5 hours of sleep per night (or per day, since my combination of being a night person and being on Pacific Time means I’m probably sawing Z’s while you are at work, unless you are my Hawaiian reader.) I think I need about 15 minutes more than a decade ago.
To date, only a handful of small studies have looked at short sleepers—in part because they’re hard to find. They rarely go to sleep clinics and don’t think they have a disorder.
A few studies have suggested that some short sleepers may have hypomania, a mild form of mania with racing thoughts and few inhibitions. “These people talk fast. They never stop. They’re always on the up side of life,” says Dr. Buysse. He was one of the authors of a 2001 study that had 12 confirmed short sleepers and 12 control subjects keep diaries and complete numerous questionnaires about their work, sleep and living habits.One survey dubbed “Attitude for Life” that was actually a test for hypomania. The natural short sleepers scored twice as high as the controls.
I’ve never seen anybody explain a downside to hypomania other than that you get on everybody else’s nerves. Also, the decline in popularity of the word “bully” as an all purpose term of approbation since Teddy Roosevelt’s day has deprived hypomanics of their ideal word, but still …
There is currently no way people can teach themselves to be short sleepers. …
Christopher Jones, a University of Utah neurologist and sleep scientist who oversees the recruiting, says there is one question that is more revealing than anything else: When people do have a chance to sleep longer, on weekends or vacation, do they still sleep only five or six hours a night? People who sleep more when they can are not true short sleepers, he says.
Sleep deprivation makes most people grumpy. It’s sometimes used as a form of torture. Oddly enough, it can also bring on temporary euphoria, according to a study in the journal Neuroscience last month.
Yeah, I’ve seen that. The crash can be pretty hard, though.
To date, Dr. Jones says he has identified only about 20 true short sleepers, and he says they share some fascinating characteristics. Not only are their circadian rhythms different from most people, so are their moods (very upbeat) and their metabolism (they’re thinner than average, even though sleep deprivation usually raises the risk of obesity). They also seem to have a high tolerance for physical pain and psychological setbacks.
“They encounter obstacles, they just pick themselves up and try again,” Dr. Jones says.
Some short sleepers say their sleep patterns go back to childhood and some see the same patterns starting in their own kids, such as giving up naps by age 2. As adults, they gravitate to different fields, but whatever they do, they do full bore, Dr. Jones says.
“Typically, at the end of a long, structured phone interview, they will admit that they’ve been texting and surfing the Internet and doing the crossword puzzle at the same time, all on less than six hours of sleep,” says Dr. Jones. “There is some sort of psychological and physiological energy to them that we don’t understand.”
Drs. Jones and Fu stress that there is no genetic test for short sleeping. Ultimately, they expect to find that many different genes play a role, which may in turn reveal more about the complex systems that regulate sleep in humans.
Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and Leonardo da Vinci were too busy to sleep much, according to historical accounts. Winston Churchill and Thomas Edison came close but they were also fond of taking naps, which may disqualify them as true short sleepers.
I suspect that the ability to take naps correlates with high achievement, especially in management-type positions that require a lot of travel.
Pat Buchanan’s recent memoir, The Greatest Comeback, on being an aide to Richard Nixon during the campaigns of 1966 to 1968 emphasizes that Nixon could always fall asleep soon after taking his seat on the airplane. It’s hard to get important work done on an airplane since the planes are typically pressurized to the 8,000 foot level, and the rapid change leaves most people groggy (the new carbon fiber Boeing 787 is intended to be pressurized at the 6,000 foot level so business travelers can accomplish more onboard).
So the best thing to do on a plane is to nap. But it takes me, for example, a long time to fall asleep and a long time to fully wake up, so I never sleep on flights shorter than cross-country: Chicago-L.A., for instance, isn’t long enough for me to sleep. My impression is that CEO-types, however, tend to be guys who nod off rapidly and wake up instantly.
Nowadays, some short sleepers gravitate to fields like blogging, videogame design and social media, where their sleep habits come in handy.
Actually, blogging of the type I do where I try to come up with some idea that is true, new, interesting, and funny (in declining order of priority) is a pretty good test of how much sleep you need.