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February 7, 1977

An Imposter Is a Tax Assessor

JAMA. 1977;237(6):532. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03270330022014

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To the Editor.—  My little old lady patient visits the office, at times to see me, at others to read medical journals in the waiting room. I report a recent incident.

Little Old Lady:  I read in the JAMA tax assessors now parade the corridors of medicine in a more than ordinarily confusing manner.

Liddle:  Not really?

Little Old Lady:  Oh, yes indeed really. See page 2395, volume 236. Happens I was born in a fourposter in a northern Vermont township which still employed a fenceposter, a surveyor in effect; our tax assessor was our imposter. But your JAMA turns him into a disease, somewhat as Samuel Butler made crime a disease. Not an editorial or typographical error, do you suppose?

Liddle:  In the prestigious JAMA? "Nevah!"

Little Old Lady:  You must be right, because in a later issue for October 18, page 1846, he's back as an organic disease