About Being Paul Revere

Alice Keys, MD
107
130

A reader asked why more psychiatrists don’t speak up louder against psychiatric drugs. He said there’s enough harm being done each day to those taking psychiatric drugs that not speaking up is like being a “good German”.

I’d like to think there’s someone in charge who could sound the alarm. It’s nice to imagine that working doctors have the power and freedom to speak up in a forceful and visible manner. If such a doctor exists, it’s not a psychiatrist who works in the trenches. A working doctor today is not in a position to be Paul Revere.

There is no doctor’s union. Every worker without a union is easy to chop off and replace like a malfunctioning cog. This leaves the individual cog to bear the devastating consequences alone. Doctors are wage-slaves with debt shackles and family hostages like everyone else. Advanced degrees and years of experience confer no protection against a lifetime of being unemployed.

As a doctor-employee, I wasn’t often invited to meetings. I wasn’t asked how I thought things were working. I was seldom asked how things should be done. I was told that I was “too expensive” a worker to be in meetings. Meetings took me away from the purpose for which I’d been hired. I’d been hired to shovel prescriptions in billable units as fast as I could. Period.

Doctor work today is high-speed prescription writing, test ordering and report typing. Nothing more is allowed.

Even doctors who are “medical directors”, direct little. They also have to earn their keep by shoveling prescriptions. They are sometimes in charge of physician recruitment and retention to keep the trenches full. They are the ultimate coverage for prescription refills.

Over the years, I’ve spoken up at jobs about clear and immediate dangers in patient care. I’ve written and talked my way all the way to the CEO in my efforts to protect patients. Each time, the final outcome was that I could either play along or leave. Period.

There’s no “whistle blower protection” except for obvious federal billing fraud. Given the current lack of protection afforded Federal whistle-blowers in the national arena, I wonder if this government-mandated “whistle-blower protection” would protect any tweeter.

At the same time, I think psychiatrists and other professionals are speaking up. But, out of necessity, they’re speaking up in private conversations with patients and colleagues. Even this underground resistance carries with it the risk of being tossed on a permanent junk heap.

Every psychiatrist, nurse practitioner or primary care doctor who says “no” to pressure to prescribe more drugs is speaking up.

Every medical and mental health provider who has a personal chat with a patient to discourage them from hooking their mouth to the American pill pipeline is speaking up.

Every therapist and doctor who offers non-pill treatment alternatives, who gives genuine support and who re-frames natural human emotional and behavioral responses is speaking up.

Each time one person’s drug dose is lowered, this is speaking up.

These all count.

* * * * * * *

Thanks for reading, thinking and writing.

Alice de Saavedra Keys MD

107 COMMENTS

    • Duane,

      I was thrilled to read that some Harvard medical students caught on that their professors were delivering drug company tainted information in their classes and started a big protest. This led many sympathetic professors to join their cause including the famous Dr. Marcia Angell, author of THE TRUTH ABOUT THE DRUG COMPANIES, and former editor of the formerly prestigious NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE before it prostituted itself to BIG PHARMA and fired Dr. Angell for protesting such selling out. Unfortunately, it seemed to focus on medical students other than psychiatrists, but as with OCCUPY WALLSTREET, where there is a will (and ethics) there’s a way!

      Here is the hyperlink to the NEW YORK TIMES ARTICLE about this student led drug company infested Harvard education protest:

      http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/03/business/03medschool.html?pagewanted=1&_r=2&emc=eta1

    • Although I think even they get leaned on by thier employers if they threaten the party line too much. A leading light said they all work in teams so trying to suggest anything but medication can be fraught, pressumably with worries about lossing a job or not getting promotion as you say.

  1. Thanks Alice, for posting your thoughts on this. It’s great to see you are one of the people speaking out.

    I think we need to expand the discussion to address the question of why more psychologists, social workers etc. aren’t speaking out. Many of these people are in private practice, there is no one to fire them, yet they keep quiet.

    We really need a lot of voices speaking up and supporting each other if big change is to happen.

    • I agree with you, Ron. It’s still pretty quiet out here in Mental Health Land. Getting better, but I still feel like the guy in Bermuda shorts at the black tie dinner most of the time.

      I was recently at a meeting discussing the lower age limit for an automatic review if a foster kid was prescribed certain drug categories. When they asked if 6 made sense as a lowest age for antidepressants, I said, “There is no evidence base for the use of antidepressants in a child under 6.” No response. I said it again, louder. Again, no response. They’d given me studies on earlier points when I’d raised them, but not a word here. My read is they all knew I was 100% correct, but nobody wanted to talk about it. Too uncomfortable, I guess.

      But that’s what we’re up against. Denial, plain and simple. People know what’s happening isn’t right, but we’re not supposed to talk about it. Most people, having received this treatment, will never mention it again. Of course, I’m not most people…

      —– Steve

  2. Dear Alice, I enjoy your writing and your thoughts. I became a Social Worker at the same time you entered the Psych field. It was a different time.I also dropped out of my field because of what it had become. Unfortunately for me, I became ill and didn’t realize the massive changes in the Mental Health field. I wasted ten years of my life following the dictates of the system. I had known about the Psych survivor movement but only in passing and I did not appreciate the realms of abuse patients were thrown into by locked wards and forced treatment. I know now and what to speak up. Sometimes a seclusion room can be a saving grace for freedom work.

  3. My sister, a psychiatrist for the past 20 years, had her entire Ivy League education and medical school paid for by our father. She graduated without a cent of debt. She has a beautiful house in the suburbs, three healthy well-adjusted kids, and derives a lot of satisfaction from the social standing and respect that one gets from being a doctor (even a psychiatrist). She has tremendous skills and would be a success at whatever she chose. Her husband works on Wall Street and is very well paid. And she still won’t criticize psychiatry publicly, even though she has serious reservations about the effects of some drugs. Let’s face it, not all psychiatrists are forced to keep quiet by a life of indentured servitude. Some are just too cowardly to risk their social standing by challenging the mainstream.

    • None are forced to keep quiet. No psychiatrist operates under external compulsion. They are not literally captives of the system. True, the role of an individual within oppressive, hierarchical institutions is carefully circumscribed as to often deny scope for individual choice and discretion, but no one’s forcing them at gunpoint to keep quiet.

      What’s the worse that can happen? Well, they might lose their job. Unlike those of us who have been consigned to the quasi-leprous, socially dead community of “mentally ill” unpeople, there’d be employers willing to take them on in some job which, although it perhaps wouldn’t bring the psychological gains that accrue to power and privilege, would perhaps allow them to exist in good conscience.

      Personally, I think there are far too many psychiatrists paying a purely verbal homage to the need for change, whilst leveraging the system for all its worth, keeping humanitarian, liberal principles ostentatiously on the end of their tongues without feeling the emotions they evoke.

  4. I appreciate you’re speaking out and asking these questions, Alice. Your essay brings to mind a book by Colin Ross “The Great Psychiatry Scam” that a friend suggested but I’ve not yet read.

    Its a slow process but perhaps as “providers” of all income brackets start speaking up perhaps more will as time goes on.

    Thanks for being one on the frontlines so to speak.

  5. “Doctors are wage-slaves with debt shackles”

    Doctors make AT LEAST FIVE TIMES the amount that working class Americans make. I live next door to a doctor, who despite being in her early 30’s, built a horse farm and buys brand new cars every two years. It’s not fair to compare doctors to everybody else. I live off 7,000 dollars a year. My father lives off 26 thousand a year and has nearly 100,000 of debt. My sister lives off 14,000 a year and has over 20 thousand in debt. Doctors make 160+ thousand a year and should be no more than 100,000 in debt. They are NOT “wage-slaves with debt shackles”

    If I could be a doctor for even just a year, I could retire at the end of that one year and still be living better off than I am now. Please stop trying to make doctors look and seem no different than the rest of us.

    • Jeffrey C,

      I couldn’t agree with you more. Given the millions of lives, careers, educations, livelihoods, reputations and very health/survival of the many needless victims deliberately destroyed by the perpetrators of biopsychiatry with bogus stigmas geared to rob the stigmatized of all their human, civil, democratic rights in the guise of “mental health” in addition to their health, brain and very lives to push the latest lethal drugs, ECT and other brain/body damaging tortures on the most vulnerable they target with impunity by selling out to those in power, I find it sickening to endure any pretense whatever that psychiatrists are the poor victims abused by an oppressive system while a vast majority are making a killing literally. Talk about turning the tables on the victims!!

      This is like the German SS complaining of the stench they had to endure in the concentration camps they managed while eating their lunch. Can it get any worse than this??

      I suggest that everyone read the Stanley Milgram experiments that resulted in the book, OBEDIENCE TO AUTHORITY, whereby though many people would shock another human to apparent death if an “apparent” authority took responsibility, more independent, ethical people refused. Dr. Philip Zimbardo did the famous prison experiments that proved that certain people given too much authority and others too little would result in gross abuse of power by some in the former group and too much submissiveness and deterioration by some in the latter group, which sounds a lot like the mental death profession and their oppressed victims. Things got so bad that Dr. Zimbardo had to cancel the experiments. He wrote a book called THE LUCIFER EFFECT whereby he blames environments for causing such a descent into evil, but I disagree with him. I tend to agree more with Dr. M. Scott Peck, Christian psychiatrist, in his book, THE PEOPLE OF THE LIE, whereby he finds that certain people are or become evil because they refuse to see or acknowledge their own capacity for evil or evil in themselves, so they must scapegoat and destroy others with their malignant narcissism. He points out that an average garden variety “sinner” or humble person well aware of his/her faults, shortcomings and tendency to make mistakes/miss the mark or sin tends to become very confused around an evil person and cannot think or survive very long in their toxic presence. This is especially true for children trapped by evil parents or caretakers like abusive psychiatrists. Because mainstream biopsychiatry has chosen to sell out to BIG PHARMA at the cost of human lives including toddlers and babies no less, I believe they are a perfect example of THE PEOPLE OF THE LIE whereby even the APA president admitted the APA chose to “dance with the devil” of BIG PHARMA leading to the devil calling the tune. Dr. Loren Mosher’s resignation letter to the APA in disgust said it all and was a wonderful gift to his many supporters he left behind to validate their reality.

      Again, the “poor victim psychiatrists” is pretty hard to stomach when all is said and done given that many risked and even their lives to save Jews and others during World War II. Of course, there are the usual heroes like Dr. Peter Breggin, Dr. Loren Mosher, Dr. Fred Baughman, Dr. Timothy Scott, Dr. Phillip Thomas, Dr. Grace Jackson, Dr. Johanna Montcrieff, Dr. Paula Caplan, Dr. Judith Herman, Dr. Frank Ochberg, Dr. Carol Warshaw, Dr. Marcia Angell, Dr. Sydney Walker III, Dr. Willaim Glasser, Robert Whitaker and many other noble whistleblowers who risked their careers and reputations to expose the truth and help people save themselves as much as possible while challenging the establisment.

      Alice, whether you intend it or not, it strikes me that you appear to be saying that if one has to fraudulently prey on vulnerable people to give them life destroying bogus stigmas from the junk science DSM to push lethal drugs and other brain/body damaging drugs/”treatments” in the guise of “mental health” to make a good living and pay off their student debt while depriving their victims of theirs probably permanently due to stigma and disability, then it is totally justified.

      So, I guess the conclusion of this mentality is that it’s a jungle out there and it’s every person for themselves or eat or be eaten with no pretense of any civilization, normality, morality, altruism, etc. And people believe biopsychiatrists should be calling the shots as to what is normal and what makes a “healthy” environment? NOT. They only want a healthy environment for the 1% power elite and current robber barrons so they can feel free to prey on the rest of us with the latest “SHOCK DOCTRINES,” so we should at least call a spade a spade.

      And though you compare mainstream medicine’s crimes with psychiatry’s, at least if you get a diagnosis of high cholesterol and a prescription for harmful statins, you can research that and not take them. Plus, you aren’t saddled with a life destroying bogus stigma that will follow you for life to destroy your life and that of your family in countless ways along with the prescribed poisons on patent that can be forced on you for life with the constant threat of loss of freedom for which these monstrous dehumanizing stigmas were created.

      Alice, I appreciate your honesty about your own experience with psychiatry, but this evil menance to humanity grows in power and an ever growing capacity to do global harm daily and many so called doctors are complicit in these crimes against humanity including the general GP’s now doling out the toxic psychiatric drugs often without a stigma at least.

      Again, you are doing a great service by admitting and exposing the truth, which does help to validate the reality of those so horribly invalidated, deceived and harmed by the fraud of biopsychiatry. But, every medical doctor is supposed to uphold, “First do no harm,” and when Dr. Peter Breggin, long term psychiatrist had to warn in his book, TOXIC PSYCHIATRY, that visiting a psychiatrist was the most dangerous thing one could do, our government, medical profession and society at large lost its moral compass.

  6. My ex-psychiatrist, the one who hooked me on benzos and told me that my brain was “broken” and needed Celexa for life the way a diabetic needed insulin, was a solo practitioner who did not accept insurance. He and his wife took several vacations a year, in locations all over the world. He had interesting and expensive hobbies. I think he may have begun his career with an interest in healing people, but as drug therapy took off, he based his practice around his prescription pad and it paid in spades.
    What doctor wants to willingly give up a patient with good insurance? And see that green walk out the door? Lose three or four and there goes a lifestyle, until they can be replaced.

  7. Hi Alice,
    Your article makes a good point – It is not reasonable to expect all doctors to be advocates, or fighting the system, or publicly speaking out as anti-APA or anti-big pharma. This is a role for advocates and journalists; the role of doctors is to be doctors. However, it is reasonable to expect doctors to be up to date on empirical findings in their field, and honest with their patients about why they recommend what they do and the risks that accompany them. (Yet sadly, many are neither.)

    Doing things differently does count. Sometimes the most powerful agents of change don’t come from outspoken critics of a system, but from those inside the system who simply choose to quietly do things differently . For example, a doctor who is concerned that patients are not receiving adequate information about the risks of taking medication can provide more information in the clinic in simple handouts comparing the risks of different drugs.

    To manage the risk of over-medicating patients, some community mental health centers are integrating therapy and primary care in the same facility that allows patients to address other things that are fueling their psychiatric symptoms and compounding the medications’ side effects (drug/alcohol use, smoking, poor diets, sedentary lifestyle, bad relationships, too much stress) at the same time.

    I have found the key ingredient for me for successful management of my condition was 1) to be fully educated about treatment options including all the drugs and their side effects and 2) to be in an integrated clinic with treatment teams that work together, so that the psychiatrist has a clearer picture of what is going on, and what other coping techniques are being used, and what does actually need medication to keep in check. When the condition is being addressed comprehensively, I have found I can keep the amount and duration of medication down to a bare minimum so that I have very few side effects and minimal disability.

    I realize this is not the norm in clinical practice, and I’m not the norm in patients, because I do demand this high standard of care. But the doctors I work with aren’t advocates either; they just chose to try to be better at their jobs.

    Alexa

  8. I don’t know much about the difficulties of doctors and psychiatrists, I know a bit more about the difficulties of research scientists and most are lucky if they can maintain the standard of living of a graduate student; research does not pay (unless you are in the private sector, of course). Is that a justification for bending the truth in their research? For lying? No. I understand why some do it, yes, but that doesn’t make it any better; it does not exculpate them; it doesn’t attenuate their guilt. A lie is a lie even if it is only a half truth.
    Is it better to be unemployed and sidelined then? Well, if the only two options are collaborating with a harmful lie or be sidelined, then you bet being sidelined is better. Infinitely better.

    Alicia, don’t take away from your own achievement. Even if everything you had achieved was simply not collaborating with a harmful lie, that would already be an awful lot.

  9. One thing struck me this morning. We attack the psychiatrists who don’t speak out to save their jobs. We attack the drug companies who create and push the poison pills. We berate the system for doing the horrible and terrible things that it does.

    What about the general public that is so gullible that it accepts all the advertizing and lies of the drug companies even when it’s all nonsense that a 5th grader could figure out? What about all the people who flock to their doctors begging for a pill that will keep them from being sad or the benzo that will alleviate their anxiety? What about all the people who run away from the adversities of life and seek only perpetual happiness?

    I was once one of the sheep even though I don’t like to admit it now. I think that this is one of the fundamental issues of what we’re dealing with here and until we deal with it, we’re only spinning our wheels. It’s not just psychiatrists, it’s not just drug companies, it’s not just a corrupt government or the terrible “mental health” system. It is the prevalent attitude among the public that we should never have to suffer for any reason that is also a large part of the equation.

    • I agree with what you say, there’s a much larger cultural issue and, frankly, I think a lot of the great ‘social triumphs’ of the modern world need to be questioned and re-examined; I suppose that makes me retrograde. I think however that there’s a stark difference of responsibility between those who don’t know any better, those who should know better but don’t, and those who do know but don’t care. It’s the ones who know and don’t care that worry me the most; there’s no line they will not cross because, well, they just don’t care.

  10. Indirectly I have encountered excellent and not so good people in this profession.. The latter a pill-dispenser, the former, took the trouble to assess my partners needs and revealed that what she had been on,provoked serious weight-gain issues which resulted in her weight rocketing (she’s 5′ 4″ tall and has CP) from under 8 Stone to at one point 20 Stone! This was down to her meds and it seems that whilst the Pharma industry are all too willing to produce this stuff, side-effects like this are considered awkward side-effects which in reality, damage the users self-image … = more meds … and make people seriously obese in a way that no-kwown method of dieting can deal with. The are people ‘kicking up a stink’ about this, but their complaints and concerns are just brushed under the carpet by the Pharma industry and probably a lot of those dishing this stuff out

    At the end of the day, the cost of councelling and therapies are far far more time-consuming & expensive than pills, even though in many instances, the latter results in a much less distressed person and someone who is able to live a far more fulfilling and happy life. Some ‘conditions’ can only be effectively controlled by pill-popping, but I’m pretty sure that the number of people needing to resort to this option, is a far lower % than the Pharmaceutical industry would have us believe it is!

    • No Alice, I’m in no way offended or even slighted by your reply. When I wrote that medicating is cheaper than therapies, I meant that ‘Many people due to the disinformation put out by the pharma industry and by getting someone to take meds, means that once prescribed, those who dish them out have ‘washed their hands’ in relation to that patient, unless some medication ‘problem’ surfaces …. A bit like Pontius Pilate … I suspect another issue (In the UK) with the councelling route, is that there just aren’t the number of qualified therapists there needs to be, and ‘quick fixes’ and short-term solutions which enable the beurocrats within the NHS to ‘Tick boxes’ as part of a process has been done, whilst the tick-box for councelling can’t be ‘ticked’ until the patient’s treatment has finished. If it’s meds, it seems that once the meds have been prescribed (even if they are not effective) that NHS ‘box’ can be ticked off!!

  11. Alice,

    Thanks for the view from the inside – very interesting, because from other vantage points within the mental health industry psychiatrists look like the All Powerful Oz. I definitely see what you were up against – another psychiatrist I know, Grace Jackson did what you did, and she was not only forced to leave her job, they tried to take her license too. They also went after Peter Breggin’s for speaking out.

    But my perception is that the majority of psychiatrists don’t even try. If they aren’t drinking the cool aid, they give every appearance of doing so. They generally act entitled, superior condescending and dismissive of anyone who seriously questions them. I have attended numerous grand rounds at one of the country’s most prestigious mental institutions – and the party line medical model is seldom questioned, and when it is questioned, it is in a perfunctory way that is somehow more cover up than questioning. Kind of like the cigarette industry pretending to search its soul about tobacco, finding a few issues of “concern” but generally giving itself a pass and a pat on the back for being so broad minded in being willing to question itself. More of an inoculation than a soul searching.

    I insisted that the manual for the program I directed have a provision that no child would be put on psychiatric drugs or have meds changed without consultation with our social workers and our social workers being present at the medical appointment. I wrote to the head of the state chapter of the National Association of Social Workers about the need to examine the drug question – no response. I challenged drugs at grand rounds, speaking out and distributing a bibliography of honest literature about the drugs. I repeatedly educated my staff and our foster parents about the drugs. I supported the social workers I supervised in trying to get psychiatrists to reduce, eliminate (or not start) drugs – usually to no avail.

    Meanwhile, our state foster care regs just expanded the bureaucratic requirements on treatment foster care – check list measures of “progress,” reports ad nauseam – just before I retired I asked my social workers how much time they spent on paper work. It was 75%!!!!!!!!!!! But the real killer is the recently imposed requirement that all children entering treatment foster care have a psychiatric evaluation – that of course almost inevitably leads them to be put on drugs even before they are referred to our program.

    Psychiatry is not the sole culprit. Social workers, psychologists, LCPC’s, nurses, GP’s are all drinking the cool aid. Some will confess to reservations, or will grant that drugs are “overprescribed,” but that means next to nothing in terms of what actually happens.

    People DO need to risk their livelihoods and $300k houses. This is a human rights issue. It won’t change unless people are prepared to throw themselves into the cogs of the machine. Psych drugs and the medical model are the intake mechanism to the whole rest of the mental health industry, ending in forced drugging and incarceration. There are virtually no patients who actually have the opportunity to give real informed consent before they start these pills – that is a human rights issue.

    Thanks for your writing. This is a great site. We do need to keep writing and thinking, but eventually this needs to involve action – and most psychiatrists don’t even seem in the game to me.

    • Peter, thanks for mentioning the foster care horrors. I live with that every day. I can’t say I’m having no effect, but it does feel like we’re swimming upstream and nobody seems to be willing to risk their livelihood by speaking the truth. Or very few are, not enough to really stem the tide. I’ve also gotten the “silent treatment” for mentioning unethical behavior by prescribers. No one wants to admit it, even when they know it’s true.

      Thanks for your comments!

      — Steve

  12. Thank you Peter. Yes I know this some of this scenario well. I know of a Mental Health working who is barely functioning due to the work environment. She is waiting for her 3 years until retirement.She is a dead person walking. Somehow despite high turnover rates the Mental Health system continues to hire willing workers. The quality of these workers grows worse every year and many are too poorly educated and in to desperate need of employment to even begin to develop a clear and intellectually rigorous assessment of the truth. It is convenient for the hospitals and community mental health system to have workers that are lacking in intellectual curiosity and financial security. May are avid users of psychotropic and or recreational drugs.A long time ago I tried to get the nursing staff to complete an alcohol use questionnaire no nurse would agree to complete it once they read the questions on personal usage.
    May are good workers working in a toxic environment and suffering from burnout and compassion fatigue. Continuing education used to be pain for by the agency. I was allowed to go to a two week intensive program back in the good old days. Now workers are given CUE’s at their workplace that are repetitive and different versions of the bare bones basics as in “How to Write A Treatment Plan”. There are now books that have generic treatment plans for every psychiatric diagnosis from which workers can copy for treatment plans. I have seem them used copiously over and over again. Diagnostic assessment used to be allowed for three sessions now it is ordered to be finished in 3 hours. The best colleagues have all left in disgust. The older ones are only staying for financial reasons. All are so used up they are unable to talk the truth after they retire.This state of affairs is a pure and unilateral mess.

  13. Steve reports revealingly above sitting in a meeting with other professionals: “The topic was the lower age limit for an automatic review if a foster kid was prescribed certain drug categories. When they asked if 6 made sense as a lowest age for antidepressants, I said, “I said, “There is no evidence base for the use of antidepressants in a child under 6.” No response. I said it again, louder. Again, no response.My read is they all knew I was 100% correct, but nobody wanted to talk about it.”

    Morris states, “I think however that there’s a stark difference of responsibility between those who don’t know any better, those who should know better but don’t, and those who do know but don’t care. “ Morris finds the latter the most worrisome and Alice agrees.

    I deliberately juxtapose these two comments. Is there a stark difference of responsibility between the second and the last category? I don’t think so. Members of both of these groups would be willing to give drugs to the underage children. Psychiatry today invents its own evidence base. It provides its members and society with what they want and need: the illusion of the concerned doctor, the reassuring rhetoric of Science and the appearance of infallible scientific verdicts based upon conscientious scientific experimentation–i.e., the Holy Grail of random controlled trials. I say appearance because the trials are written up by ghost writers hired by the marketing department of the drug companies who are trained to manipulate the evidence.(See Healy’s latest book) Donna invokes Milligram. Milligram also found that in order to commit harm to people (the subjects were even willing to shock the pseudo-subjects whom they were led to believe might suffer heart attacks) most people required the illusion of Science: It was a man in a white coat who told the subjects that the pseudo-subject must be shocked because Science required it. They were not in Morris’s last category. They were not happy shocking subjects and possibly triggering heart attacks (or so they thought) but they complied. Eichmann wasn’t happy about killing the Jews. He had nothing against Jews, he liked many of them, particularly Zionists. Does President Obama enjoy choosing subjects for the drones? Or is he in the second group like Eichmann? We don’t know. We do know he won’t tolerate whistle-blowers. The greatest whistle-blowers since Daniel Ellsberg is 23 years old Bradley Manning. Those who doubt his moral convictions should read the speech that was secretly recorded in Court.(www.democracynow.org) Thanks to President Obama, the Nobel Prize winner, Manning faces a life time in prison as a reward for refusing to follow orders–for having a heart.

    What is the purpose of the psychiatric system? To provide markets for the pharmaceutical companies. This entails marketing both the drugs and the illnesses–as Whitaker has shown– and providing the enterprise with an aura of legitimacy, with the sanction of Science. Both for its 2nd category members and the public. So that those who should know better but don’t will feed the drugs to those under 6. (Steve did not mention that those over 6 will have an increased incidence of suicidality with SSRIs.)

    Does the profession do ANY good? Practically nothing relative to the harm it causes.
    In the NYT of May 10, 2007 we are informed: “
    From 2000 to 2005, drug maker payments to Minnesota psychiatrists rose more
    than sixfold, to $1.6 million. During those same years, prescriptions of
    antipsychotics for children in Minnesota’s Medicaid program rose more than ninefold.
    Those who took the most money from makers of atypicals tended to prescribe
    the drugs to children the most often, the data suggest.”
    2nd or 3rd category?

    Are psychiatrists wage slaves?
    Alice’s numbers are lower than any I have ever seen. I’m sure they are true FOR HER. But that is because the system does not reward those who don’t play the game–and prescribe drugs. I do not know what Alice means when she says she had 24/7 “coverage” which is why she made so little. Does that mean insurance? As I mentioned
    I became unemployable. True I’m a lowly psychologist–but it’s the same principal.

    If the system does not help people what is its purpose?. Its ostensible purpose is to treat mental disorders. Its true purpose is make money for the 1%–everyone here agrees about that. But it is also part of the game. BTW I invented the term “mental death system” 15 years ago, and I use it frequently. We live in a cannibalistic society. Is there any possibility of any opposition? Or take the MIC. Most Americans think its purpose is to protect US national security. But it actually must generate wars––at least for its second category true believers.

    Donna is right on the mark. She writes “I guess the conclusion of this mentality is that it’s a jungle out there and it’s every person for themselves or eat or be eaten with no pretense of any civilization, normality, morality, altruism, etc. And people believe biopsychiatrists should be calling the shots as to what is normal and what makes a “healthy” environment.” We live in a predatory society, as Donna notes. Many of the predators should know better but don’t. But psychiatrists are not merely the Scientists. They are also the priesthood:They “call the shots,” they determine what is normative and what is illegitimate– “mentally ill.”

    From whence comes the opposition? It was not psychiatrists who started a trade union for higher wages. It started with 2 dissident psychiatrists in the 1960s– Thomas Szasz and R D Laing. Both Szasz and Laing challenged the psychiatric idea of what is normative. Ten years after Szasz decried “the myth of mental illness” those at the bottom of the psychiatric caste system–schizophrenics–created a mass movement against the system. These severely disabled people were transformed into brilliant political organizers. If Szasz was the Karl Marx (an irony for a disciple of von Mises), the intellectual grave-digger of the mental death system, “schizophrenics” were the proletariat. Psychiatrists were not the mass base of the revolution. Schizophrenics were–and later “bipolars.” Remember there were still less than 50,000 bipolars in 1970. Today there are over 5 million. The mental patients liberation movement was the most radical mass movement in the post-60s, This is because it challenged the very idea of what was normal. David Oaks founder of MindFreedon, unearthed some speeches of Martin Luther King Jr and seconded his call for the promotion of “creative maladjustment.”

    In my current book on the history of the mad movement, THe Spiritual Gift of Madness.. I criticized the movement for not following through on the trajectory begun by The Icarus Project in 2004 when it called upon the Mad to cherish and cultivate the gift of madness. Although the founders of TIP had not read Laing they were certainly channeling his spirit–about 15 years later. Laing wrote in 1967 in The Politics of Experience, “The well-adjusted bomber pilot may be a greater threat to species survival than the hospitalized schizophrenic deluded that the Bomb is inside him. Our society may itself have become biologically dysfunctional, and some forms of schizophrenic alienation from the alienation of our society may have a sociobiological function that we have not recognized.”

    Inspired by Laing whom I first read in high school before I ever thought going into psychiatry I argue in The Spiritual Gift of Madness http://www.amazon.com/The-Spiritual-Gift-Madness-Psychiatry/dp/159477448X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1362598238&sr=8-1&keywords=farber+gift that the Mad pride movement has the potential to be the most radical movement since the 2nd Great Awakening, which engendered the abolitionist movement. Precisely because –as Laing realized –many of the mad had visions (“hallucinations”) of a new order, of a messianic-redemptive transformation. (Yes of course they also suffered–I always have to say the obvious to preempt copious objections) I say potential because of the change in TIP trajectory. As of now only a few among the mad or formerly mad take seriously the messianic visions they have had. Paul Levy, author of the just released book Dispelling Wetiko, is one who has and does. Paul, whose story is recounted in my book, wrote, “ We are and always have been the very Messiah we have been waiting for.”

    Today it is not the threat of the bomb but the even more dire prospect of global warming that menaces. I wrote in a recent article, “We must be aware that those of us who are alive now will be the ones who will determine whether humanity will outlast the 21st century. I think all political and social activism should be based now on the awareness that this may be humanity’s last chance — only thus will we make the kind of efforts necessary to change the world. We must face the catastrophic as well as the messianic — both of these realities have been banished from awareness.” http://www.realitysandwich.com/ecodoom_redemption_mad_movement\

    Vaclav Havel said in 1991, “Without a global revolution in the sphere of human consciousness, nothing will change for the better and the catastrophe towards which this world is headed will be unavoidable.” As Sri Aurobindo the Indian philosopher and yogi wrote in the 1920s, “A spiritualised society can alone bring about a reign of individual harmony and communal happiness; or, a new kind of theocracy, the kingdom of God upon earth, a theocracy which shall be the government of mankind by the Divine in the hearts and minds of men.The gnostic being would feel the presence of the Divine in every centre of his consciousness, in every vibration of his life-force, in every cell of his body. All beings would be to him his own selves, all ways and powers of consciousness would be felt as the ways and powers of his own universality.. His own life and the world life would be to him like a perfect work of art; it would be as if the creation of a cosmic and spontaneous genius infallible in its working out of a perfect multitudinous order.”
    \

    The enlightened being would find his existence would be fused into oneness with the transcendent and universal Self and Spirit. .He would feel the presence of the Divine in every centre of his consciousness, in every vibration of his life-force, in every cell of his body. All beings would be to him his own selves, all ways and powers of consciousness would be felt as the ways and powers of his own universality.. His own life and the world life would be to him like a perfect work of art; it would be as if the creation of a cosmic and spontaneous genius infallible in its working out of a multitudinous order.
    2.
    It may well be the Mad Pride movement that will become the catalyst for such an epochal change.

    • Seth,

      I can’t help but feel that you are implying that I stole your term of “mental death system” when you claim, “BTW, I am the one who invented the term “mental death system” 15 years ago”…because someone complimented me for using it.

      Since this makes me look like I am stealing credit for something you “invented,” I have to disagree with you here. Apparently, we both “invented” the obvious separately once we saw the horrific nightmare that covered psychiatry’s evil, lies and vicious destruction of the vulnerable in the guise of “mental health” or the “mental health profession.” Therefore, once I saw how it did all in its evil power to try to destroy loved ones of mine I was able to save thanks to Dr. Peter Breggin, it was a NO BRAINER for me to rename it “the mental death profession” professing nothing but evil lies that came to me automatically through very painful experience. I have never seen this term used elsewhere though I have read tons about the psychopaths of psychiatry and its fellow criminals in power.

      Actually, I am surprised that more people didn’t see this obvious need to expose psychiatry’s Orwellian doublespeak and call a spade a spade: “the mental death profession” since it continues the evil eugenics/euthanasia agenda that created the NAZI Holocaust and all human, racial and other “cleansings” of the “vermin unfit to live.” Despite Hitler’s horrific reputation of evil, it was psychiatry that supplied him the vicious eugenics theories he used in his infamous book, MEIN KAMPF. They were already using these evil theories to gas to death those they stigmatized as “mentally ill” or otherwise useless eaters before Hitler came to power and persuaded him to continue this monstrosity and happily moved this apparatus to the concentration camps to continue their destruction of normal humans since such murderers are psychopathic instraspecies predators as described in Dr. Robert Hare’s (foremost world authority on psychopaths) WITHOUT CONSCIENCE and SNAKES IN SUITS, Dr. Hervey Cleckley’s THE MASK OF SANITY, Dr. Martha Stout’s THE SOCIOPATH NEXT DOOR, Dr. John Clarke’s WORKING WITH MONSTERS, POLITICAL PONEROLOGY and many others. Such experts have been warning for decades that psychopaths as inhuman, intraspecies predators coupled with malignant narcissists and other evil people are the greatest threat to the survival of humanity. There is a ton of information about this on the web.

      Anyway, I applaud you for seeing the obvious and more accurately naming evil for what is is: “the mental death profession” or the “mental death system” as you say.

      Finally, I don’t agree that glorifying madness will ever help anyone in the system or at risk from it, but rather, fuel the fires of the unenlightened to see the so called mentally ill as the “other,” dangerous, defective, etc., reinforcing/justifying the “need” for more mental death torture treatment.

      Moreover, enlightenment is a wonderful goal for humanity, but as Abraham Maslow pointed out in his famous hierarchy of needs, one cannot aspire to self actualization until one’s basic physical needs for food, safety and shelter are met, so such enlightenment only seems to be within the reach of the privileged minority of humanity and even they are hard pressed to achieve it.

      I appreciate your comments and whistleblowing too. Again, I don’t want to seem petty, but I also don’t want you or others to think I stole your idea without giving you credit.

  14. In keeping with my comments, here is an article on Stanley Milgram’s famous or infamous experiments that culminated in his book, OBEDIENCE TO AUTHORITY:

    http://nature.berkeley.edu/ucce50/ag-labor/7article/article35.htm

    Though many of the tormentors or shockers of their students probably wouldn’t have done such evil without being able to pass the buck to a so called authority figure, much depended on their own penchant for good or evil in terms of their responses since many refused to follow such orders as was true in NAZI Germany and other crimes against humanity.

    This is what makes psychopaths so scary and dangerous in that they are masters of disguise, the ultimate charmer manipulator instigators of evil in the guise of goodness and the instigation of the elimination of those they scapegoat by projecting their own evil and lack of conscience/moral sanity on others. Whenever a psychopath joins a group, it is well known that the ethics of all deteriorate very quickly into a jungle mentality of every person for themselves in an attempt to survive such a group assault!

    The book EICHMAN IN JERUSALEM: THE BANALITY OF EVIL shows how an everday average human cog in a massive mechanical, robotic system can do massive evil in the guise of just following orders, just doing one’s job efficiently, etc. I doubt that the Eichmans of the world would dream up such massive evil on their own, but I also don’t doubt that such malignant people without such power do perpetrate daily psychological terror and other hidden crimes against those who have the misfortune to have contact with them as Dr. Martha Stout exposes so well in her great book, THE SOCIOPATH NEXT DOOR.

  15. Hi Donna,
    I wasn’t implying anything about you. I meant to clarify that I did not borrow the term I’ve been using for years–although in informal writings.

    I’m surprised you are not more familiar with the writings on the interface between madness and mysticism. In my recent book I interviewed (again) several people who were labeled schizophrenic or bipolar. Some of these people are activists in the mad movement, like David Oaks, Sasha DuBrul, Chaya Grossberg. The Spiritual Gift of Madness http://www.amazon.com/The-Spiritual-Gift-Madness-Psychiatry/dp/159477448X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1362598238&sr=8-1&keywords=farber+gift
    Almost all of the mad persons or formerly mad I have interviewed for my books believed what the establishment termed pathology was a breakdown-breakthrough, to use Laing’s term. Although as Laing said many of their breakthroughs were aborted by the mental death system.

    You know in the 1980s there were many “transpersonal psychologists” and transpersonal thinkers like the iconic Ken Wilber who decried those–like Joseph Campbell, Stan Grof, RD Laing–who contended that “schizophrenia” WAS often a transpersonal experience. These transpersonalists drew a dark line between madness and mysticism, claiming the former were so deeply pathological they could not possibly have had a mystical expperience. BUT THEY DID. No they didn’t claimed Wilber, it was really a pathological PRE-personal not a transpersonal experience. That’s nonsense. Not only did mad persons have mystical experiences but many of the great spiritual geniuses had spiritual crises that looked just like “schizophrenia.” The distinction between the two is spurious.As Anton Boisen pointed out in 1930 Jesus own experiences paralleled that of hospitalized mental patients. Jesus successfully resolved his “schizophrenic” breakdown–thus it became a breakthrough.

    Now you want Mad persons, people who were psych- iatrically labeled and felt they were undergoing a spiritual awakening, a potential spiritual breakthrough, to deny that madness is a potential spiritual breakthrough because affirming it would alienate people who don’t understand what a spiritual breakthrough is? It is your privilege Donna to say whatever you want about your own experiences but I think it’s presumptuous of you to claim to know what others have gone through. Or to tell them they should try to conform to normal people’s conception of “reality” lest they alienate them. Many of them agree with me: that unless we change our conception of reality we will not resolve the world-crisis that threatens humanity’s survival.

    Furthermore most poor people in the undeveloped world, in India, or poor African Americans would strongly disagree that they should postpone the expression of their spirituality until they have met Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. I read that book in 1971 and I do not think it is the last word on the topic—although I’m not sure Maslow would agree with your interpretation. But I strongly urge you to read R D Laing, John Weir Perry,Paul Levy ( you might start with the interview with him in my new book) and Anton Boisen. There are other books but those are seminal.
    Seth Farber, Ph.D.
    wwww.sethHfarber.com
    PS Excuse the errors in previous email. At the very bottom there were note I had not intended to include.

  16. Seth,

    Thank you for clarifying our coincidental individual discovery of the appropriateness of calling biopsychiatry the “mental death profession” or “mental death system.”

    I find it unbelievable how many thoughts you are claiming are in my head that aren’t there and words in my mouth I never said.

    I am familiar with many of the sources you mention, but you fail to admit that many survivors and those struggling to get there do not agree with your narrow view that people with these junk science stigmas with or without delusions or psychosis are having a spiritual experience.

    You cite and quote Sasha Dubrul, so I found his article where he reviews and praises your book that I recalled, but in the end, he doesn’t agree with your conclusions:

    https://www.madinamerica.com/2012/05/mad-pride-and-spiritual-community-thoughts-on-the-spiritual-gift-of-madness/

    Many of the comments there also express frustration with your narrow view.

    You totally missed my point. Ron Leiffer makes the excellent point that though he doesn’t buy the bogus psych stigmas and drugging, if you don’t want to be subjected to forced commitment and forced drugging, you’d better shape up and fly right or act normal. I think Sasha is saying that too when he speaks of the need for wellness after he went off the deep edge and I don’t think David Oaks and others you cite would disagree either.

    I think you are misunderstanding me in that you of all people should know that trying to explain your real life problem, crisis or even spiritual emergency/experience to a biological psychiatrist is a lesson in futility in that they will just cherry pick what you say to give you a bogus stigma and lethal drugs. As you very brilliantly said, their goal is to push the lethal drugs only and they don’t even pretend to heal anyone!! So, anything you say like the above will just be used against you by the mental death profession and its cohorts in NAMI and the brainwashed public at large. As Sasha says, such spiritual experiences or so called “mad pride” may be okay to share with those who understand, but he also points out that it is crucial to be well and act sane if one is to survive, thrive and be of any help to the survivor movement. Many people protested because some like Sasha believe a trauma perspective is more or equally apppropriate which I detailed in a post above. One of the great crises of trauma is a loss of one’s spiritual or religious faith or SHATTERED ASSUMPTIONS per Janov-Bultman’s trauma book, so restoring or finding a new spiritual path can be crucial to one’s recovery, but safety comes first per Dr. Judith Herman in her classic TRAUMA AND RECOVERY.

    Many people stigmatized with bogus psych disorders have suffered a great deal in many different ways, so I question your tendency to lump everyone’s experience together as some glorious mystical experience when many are anything but that and can end in suicide and/or destroyed lives. You are probably accurate in some cases I am sure, but I think each individual has the right to define his/her experience rather than having it defined by you though you accuse me of doing this.

    I disagree with you that Jesus was schizophrenic in that I believe many descriptions in the NT about his spiritual experience and awakening are based on religious/spiritual metaphors of the times. Yes, his family supposedly accused him of being crazy, but based on my studies, much “tailoring” was done to the original manuscripts and probably the oral tradition they came from. I don’t see anything crazy about Jesus’ behavior, but rather the wisdom of a very enlightened man if you ignore the diatribes against the Jews and pharisees that were added later per Dominic Crossan that aren’t even historically accurate. Plus, Jesus was a Jew and per one Jewish expert, probably a pharisee himself, so lots of the garbage added to the NT makes no sense. This is a very complex topic, so I won’t go into it here.

    It seems that you deliberately assumed the worst of everything I have said. When I spoke of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, it was only with the idea that if one is starving, lacking a safe place to sleep or other bare essentials it is hard to think of much else for most people. Yes, the Buddha left his wealthy family and experimented with all kinds of self abuse and flagellation to get enlightened only to find futility until he AWOKE under the bodhi tree to understand the true causes of suffering and rebirth as the story goes. This was a long and painful journey as it is for anyone who seeks “enlightenment” or to travel along a spiritual path. That’s all I was trying to say rather than some nefarious agenda to deprive the poor, starving and homeless the same path to enlightenment and I am sure some very special individuals do just that. But, that is not the same as the dessert monks choosing such harsh living conditions to achieve certain spiritual goals instead of having such a fate forced on one due to the greedy, evil people stealing far more than their fair share of the world’s wealth.

    This is such a huge topic one could go on all day, but it’s getting late. All that I can say is that I think you over reacted to what I said and ended up accusing me of what it seems you are trying to do: making the false assumption that everyone’s experience with the mental death profession, altered states of psychosis/delusions and other stigmatized experiences are “spiritual gifts of madness.” Some people are atheists, agnostics and some are religious and/or spiritual, but you just can’t paint everyone with the same brush; that’s all I was trying to say along with trying to pass off psychosis and delusions as spiritual awakenings to the mental death profession and a brainwashed public may be a very dangerous lesson in futility given that they lie and deny the obvious like domestic violence as I explained in a post above.

    Interesting that you didn’t comment about some of my other points like the dangers of psychopaths to society. Are you familiar with any of this research of work I cited?

  17. Hi Donna
    You write, “You cite and quote Sasha Dubrul, so I found his article…” I did NOT cite and quote Sascha. I mentioned him because I did not think it would be fair to omit someone as well known and dedicated to the movement as he is.But his views are too conservative for me. In every article I have written since my book was published I mention my disagreement with Sascha. I discuss how he originally expressed views similar to mine but changed his mind in 2008. Now Sascha considers my vision and his vision of 2008 to be “grandiose.”
    I believe in “grandiosity.” As Henry Miller wrote, “All that maters is that the miraculous becomes the norm.”

    I devote 60 pages to my disagreement with Sascha in the book itself. The Spiritual Gift of Madness http://www.amazon.com/The-Spiritual-Gift-Madness-Psychiatry/dp/159477448X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1362598238&sr=8-1&keywords=farber+gift I quote about 5 pages of statements he made in 2004–8 in which he describes the mad as a spiritual “vanguard.” The chapter ends with recent statement by him and my response. I said above in my description of my books that “most” of the people I interviewed in my books(I wrote one in 1993 that has 7 interviews) agree with what you call my “narrow view” that psychiatric survivors “with or without delusions or psychosis are having a spiritual experience.”

    I am not sure what you meant in your paragraph on Maslow. I think it is unclear and I was wrong to presume I knew what you meant to say. I’m sorry. Now that you reformulated it, I completely agree. But we have substantive disagreements.

    I’m trying to determine our differences, and there is a difference.Let me quote you a couple sentences from my statement to which you responded. I wrote above “The Mad pride movement has the potential to be the most radical movement since the 2nd Great Awakening… Precisely because –as Laing realized –many of the mad had visions (“hallucinations”) of a new order, of a messianic-redemptive transformation. (Yes of course they also suffered–I always have to say the obvious to preempt copious objections)” Did you see that statement in parenthesis? Let me explain it. Considering that I was writing a very brief composition it seemed to me to be both obvious and irrelevant to note that madness involves suffering.Yet if I do not say the obvious many people will write me accusing me of claiming that madness is all happiness and light—as they used to say of Laing. So even though it is “obvious” to any intelligent person in touch with reality that madness involves suffering I repeated it again in the parenthesis in an effort to “preempt copious objections.” Really Donna it never works. People always make the same objections anyway. It is a waste of my time having to say that and having to discuss this now. But I am doing this because , as I said, very intelligent people like yourself make silly objections. How could anyone who interacted with so called schizophrenics or other sensitive people claim that madness was sheer joy?How could anyone who is aware not be in deep pain about the state of the world? Yet EVEN WHEN I SAY “yes of course madness involves suffering” people still DO NOT SEE THE VERY WORDS. Or they –YOU–do not assimilate them. When The Icarus Project first called madness a gift they said it was a dangerous gift that needed to be nurtured.

    This is the problem I have in making my argument. Because I say madness is a transpersonal experience rather than a disease or a wound or a tragedy, people assume that I am making a very shallow argument. Thus you write

    ” I don’t agree that glorifying madness will ever help anyone in the system or at risk from it…”
    Neither Laing nor Perry nor Campbell have ever glorified madness. Nor have they or I glorified mysticism. Or spirituality. Or love. I cherish madness and think it should be nurtured. Would it not be stupid if I were to say love does not involve any suffering? Yet if I said “Love is a redemptive force” probably no one would say “You are glorifying love.” I would not feel I had to put in parenthesis a caveat that love involved suffering.

    You wrote,”I question your tendency to lump everyone’s experience together as some glorious mystical experience when many are anything but that and can end in suicide and/or destroyed lives.” Is it not true that love can end in suicide and/or destroyed lives?.. Listen to AM radio. Read Shakespeare. Read Dylan Thomas. Just turn on the TV and watch Jodi Arias.
    Does that mean we should disparage love. Renounce it? I would not agree, even though love is difficult.

    If you read Wm James or Evelyn Underhill you will see that mysticism OFTEN involves great suffering. From whence comes this idea that spirituality means all happiness and light? If the world were sane it would. But it is not. It’s insane. It’s new age escapism to insist that spirituality should be free of pain.

    The difference between you and I is not over whether madness involves suffering. It is my “narrow view” that psychiatric survivors “with or without delusions or psychosis” are in most cases having “a spiritual experience.” I am referring to so-called schizophrenics and so called adult bipolars. I am not talking about a 12 year old who has been on drugs for 5 years.
    When I first discovered the survivors’ movement it was 1988 and most were former “schizophrenics” who had had spiritual experiences. Now it’s different because half the population are psych survivors. They put them on drugs at 6–or 2. Sascha and I completely disagree now.It’s discussed in detail in my book. Frankly I don’t think he really answered my point but you could decide for yourself. Sascha still has not read –or he had not a year ago–Laing or John Weir Perry or Breggin (or Szasz?), so I still get the impression he had not completely defined his position–or that it is still evolving.

    But Paul Levy, a psychiatric survivor around my own age (60) agrees with me. You can read his discussion with me on his website.SCroll down on the right at wwww.awakeninthedream.com He reprints the chapter from my book. I don’t have time to explain my ideas on this topic. To be quite frank I think my own ideas are seminal,since I am the only one who has tried to develop embryonic ideas expressed by Laing in the 1960s. Laing’s other fans are more conservative than I am. You can read a brief version of my thesis in an essay published on MIA. The essay is Szasz and Beyond:The Spiritual Promise of the Mad Pride Movement.It was published here in Nov 2012. My hope is to find a few mad people who agree with my thesis that they can contribute to the transformation of the earth-consciousness.

    I am not an expert on the historical Jesus. However Boisen, himself a psych survivor (a rare feat in 1934), bases his thesis on the Gospel version. BUt he also mentions St Paul and George Fox–founder of the Quakers. His point was that so called psychotics had a divine calling to contribute to the transition to a messianic age. My theory does not depend upon the assertion that all mad persons have had a spiritual experience, but that some have, many have. And it carries an obligation.(That doesn’t mean that the 12 year old on drugs is less worthy.)

    My original statement was in accord with what you said. Normal people are the major obstacle to spiritual change. Some are unhappy about it,but so was Eichmann. I don’t know whether the danger lies in evil people or people who just seek to adjust. This is a predatory society, and it does not matter that many psychiatrists feel bad about what they are doing. The kind of radical transformation that can save the planet was exemplified by the mental patients’ liberation movement.I can’t see how a trade union of psychiatrists’ would be radical enough to save humanity..

    THe Mad movement was radical because it redefined what was normative, because it called for creative maladjustment. Whether Mad Pride will fulfill its salvific potential depends upon whether a few among the mad have the courage to trust their vision and to seek to inspire a new Great Awakening, like the one in 1830 or in the 1960s. If creative maladjustment gives rise to the vision of a new spiritual order based upon the renunciation of our current social order, then there is hope. But not if visionaries suppress their visions, not if they too seek to adjust. Only if they have the courage to propagate a new Zeitgeist, a vision of a new order based upon the unfettered imagination and the redemptive power of love and madness.
    Seth
    http://www.sethHfarber.com

  18. For the record Donna inadvertently misquoted me. She said I had written,”BTW, I am the one who invented the term ‘mental death system’ 15 years ago.” But I looked it over a couple weeks ago and noticed I actually wrote, “BTW I invented the term ‘mental death system’ 15 years ago, and I use it frequently. We live in a cannibalistic society.” In other words I did not write that I was “the one” who invented it. Thus as I said, “I wasn’t implying anything about you [Donna],”– I was not implying that our usage of a similar term was not coincidental,an assertion Donna accepted.
    We both also had a very similar perspective about the cannabalistic nature of society, something we both stressed.
    However we differed over my high assessment of madness.
    SF
    http://www.sethHfarber.com