60 Minutes: Stop the Lies!


Those who Would Give up Essential Liberty
to Purchase a Little Temporary Safety,
Deserve Neither Liberty nor Safety.

 – Benjamin Franklin


As the 60 Minutes episode featuring E. Fuller Torrey comes to air, I feel moved to ask: when will the lies that robbed me of my late teenage years and young adulthood stop?  When will the false notion that professionals can predict who – and who will not – be violent give way to the reality – proven over and again – that they are no better able than chance to make such predictions? When will we see the reality that forced treatment is actually, statistically, more harmful than helpful? It certainly was not helpful for me.

When will we realize that if we lock up people whose struggles have landed them with spurious psychiatric labels, we will not be safer?

While Torrey asks for more treatment, If we look carefully at those who have committed the epidemic of killings they are mostly people who have, in fact, been in treatment.  The Attorney General of Connecticut is resisting the release of Sandy Hook shooter Adam Lanza’s records, for fear that they might “cause a lot of people to stop taking their medications.” Congressman Jeff Miller is calling for an investigation into whether the psychiatric medications Aaron Alexis, the Navy Yard shooter, was taking was connected to his behavior.  NIMH Director Thomas Insel has acknowledged that the DSM, the book on which all current psychiatric diagnoses are premised, “lacks validity,” and that antipsychotics worsen long-term outcomes. Only a fraction of those deemed to be at risk of psychosis actually progress to psychosis. And, most importantly, research indicates that forced treatment does not work.

Despite mounting evidence that psychiatric diagnoses and forced treatment cause more harm than good, the specious promise of safety – this time coming from psychiatrist E. Fuller Torrey – is, as it has always been, a bad deal. Whether it’s for the people who imagine – incorrectly – that they are being protected from the people who would commit crimes, or for the people whose lives and liberty will be taken away – as mine was, unjustly, a lonely teenager who was sad over the loss of a boyfriend, it is, as it always has been, a mistake.

60 Minutes: Please correct the record by giving voice to the thousands who have survived, and millions who have not, the false promises of psychiatry. As Thomas Insel said about the longstanding promises of proof of the illnesses cited as justification for taking the liberty and bodily integrity of millions: “we’re still waiting.”





Tonight, CBS is airing an episode of 60 Minutes called “Imminent Danger” featuring Fuller Torrey about violence and people with psychiatric histories. If 60 Minutes supports biased reporting, let’s occupy their site and make our voice heard. Let them know that scapegoating people with psychiatric histories or labels, and promoting forced treatment is not a solution to gun violence. Tell 60 Minutes to air an episode that includes OUR voice and corrects the falsehoods broadcast by the Treatment Advocacy Center.
Below are a list of talking points you may want to use and ways social media can convey this message to TAC and the producers of 60 Minutes.
Avenues for Action
1.      60 Minutes website: Post a comment directly on 60 Minutes webpage for the “Imminent Danger” episode: http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50155990n . Let’s fill up the episode page with OUR voices!
2.      Post on 60 Minutes Facebook page: 60 Minutes Facebook page does not allow you to directly write on their wall. However, you can post a comment to their picture about the “Imminent Danger”episode. Right now 27 people have commented and some of them support Torrey. Let’s try and get 200 people to post onto their Facebook page challenging Torrey and others! https://www.facebook.com/60minutes
3.      Post on TAC’s Facebook page: TAC is heavily promoting tonight’s 60 Minutes episode. Torrey’s allies are showing their support by posting on TAC’s Facebook page. Let’s use social media to directly challenge TAC’s assertion and post OUR thoughts on TAC’s page! https://www.facebook.com/TreatmentAdvocacyCtr
4.      Send a Tweet to TAC: Over the last few days the Treatment Advocacy Center has been tweeting about the 60 Minutes episode. We can let TAC know that they are wrong by tweeting directly onto TAC’s twitter page. TAC’s twitter id is @TreatmentAdvCtr.  (Note to send a tweet to TAC you have to have a twitter account. Also tweets must be 140 characters or less.)
Optional Talking Points:
·         Studies show that a psychiatric history by itself is not statistically related to violence.
·         The main risk factors for violence still remain being young, male, single, or of lower socio-economic status.
·         Professionals cannot predict violence
·         Forced treatment is harmful.


Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.


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  1. Great piece and call to action. Thanks for the links Dorothy! I posted this to them:
    It’s heartening to see a number of people here seeing this for the propaganda that it is. The rise in psychiatric drugging of children and others has led to an increasing number of mass shootings, virtually all by people in “treatment.” There also has never been any proof that any psych drugs “work” in the long term and much evidenced that they do incredible harm, causing suicidal and homicidal thoughts and behavior. True “treatment” would be actually listening to people and genuinely caring, not from a place of fear, but love, and interest. Despite all the money big pharma puts into advertising in overt and covert ways, most of the ads are 3/4 “side effects.” By actually caring for our fellow humans and not drug pushing, we will be sure to eliminate most of these tragedies, as well as the far worse tragedy of pathologizing most human experience and experimenting on innocent people with very dangerous drugs that doctors don’t even understand. The number of people killed from psychiatric pharmaceuticals each week (over a thousand) is more than the number killed from mass shootings in a whole year.

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  2. I just finished watching the segment. It made me sick to my stomach.

    First there was no mention that each and every single one of the mass shooters shown was on drugs.

    Then the “biological” origin of so called “schizophrenia” was presented as a “fact”.

    Anybody who thought that Big Pharma and organized psychiatry were not going to counter this year’s phenomenal attack to psychiatry (including myself) was wrong.

    This documentary was psychiatry at its worst: presenting as fact their invented diseases; threatening of “consequences” for “non compliance”. I think it is time to initiate some kind of writing campaign to 60 minutes for presenting these lies unchallenged.

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    • I would find it comical were it not so tragic that psychiatry readily endorses the theory that illegal drugs such as cannabis and PCP induce the experiences referred to as psychosis, without fully understanding the science but happy to rely upon the what is obvious merely from observation. Yet when it comes to legal (and wildly profitable) neuroleptic drugs, the same or better evidence (both scientific and observable to a layperson) shows that addiction results in withdrawal-induced psychosis, then psychiatry makes every effort to establish a consensus that there exists insufficient evidence of the connection. Including efforts in the form of interpreting damning scientific evidence as support for the opposite proposition: i.e. that psychosis following discontinuation proves that the psychosis was biologically based. And what is more, psychiatry then wants to have it both ways: illegal drugs, which are bad, cause every bad thing that was ever suspected of them, including psychosis. But, no matter. Even if a psychosis was precipitated by an illegal drug, psychiatry deems that the person still has an illness. The illegal drug use, it is explained, was just a trigger of a pre-existing biological propensity to suffer from a mental illness. This is nothing new to this audience, but it is truly remarkable, as others here have observed, that there was absolutely no discussion whatsoever on the program of the possibility that the conduct might have been influenced by powerful, brain altering drugs. If Lanza had taken PCP, the drug would have been to blame and all over the news. Then, quietly and not on the news, had Lanza survived, it would be established that, PCP notwithstanding, the PCP triggered a pre-existing disorder. Though if were on the news, it would be because his defense attorneys would have raised it as an insanity defense. Which would, in this environment, play very well to a jury. In the end, the ATM that is the market for dangerous legal neuroleptic drugs keeps spitting out cash to line the pockets of Big Pharma, while enormous taxpayer funds are directed at the effort of trying to eliminate and ramp up the criminalization of other dangerous, but illegal other drugs.

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  3. Even if I had a TV, I wouldn’t have been able to stomach watching this crap. In my opinion, Torrey’s pontification verges on hate speech. I believe his motivation is to attempt to present psychiatry as both a valid medical science and a boon to our society.

    I doubt very much that 60 minutes will even consider our protests, never mind air something from us in the interests of fair reporting. Rational discussion doesn’t improve consumer ratings and make money.

    Sometimes I get awfully tired of this struggle. I really hate Torrey. “Hate” doesn’t even cover it. I loathe and despise this man. I’m taking an introductory psychology course at the moment and our textbook briefly praises Torrey, saying he provides schizophrenic brains to researchers all over the world. This is a bit like listing influential world leaders of the last century and mentioning Hitler only to say that he was kind to dogs (just an example, not sure if it’s true or not).

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    • Francesca,

      Did that text book also applaud psychiatry’s eugenics theories of the 1930’s that Robert Whitaker and Dr. Peter Breggin have exposed as contributing to all of biopsychiatry’s despicable human rights violations like those of the Nazi Holocaust their theories incited after they gassed those they stigmatized as mentally ill “useless eaters” to death as practice before and after the Holocaust?

      Did that text book also express thanks for all that was learned from Joseph Mengele’s many experiments on humans including children in the Nazi Concentration Camps?

      E. Fuller Torrey is just continuing this wonderful legacy of biopsychiatry of stigmatizing and torturing those he and his cohorts target for their degradation stigma ceremonies to push their poison drugs and forced commitment while robbing all civil rights from their victims.

      Biopsychiatry now worships Emile Kraepelin of the dark ages who was also a big supporter of eugenics and gave them the bogus theories to come up with the life destroying bipolar and schizophrenia stigmas to make them appear medical when they sold out to Big Pharma in the 1980’s as Bob Whitaker and Dr. Peter Breggin describe in their books.

      But, Kraepelin was also big on studying psychopathy, something modern psychiatry chooses to ignore because it hits too close too home and/or they don’t want to deal with these real dangerous people, so they prey on, blame and stigmatize their destroyed, traumatized victims with the bogus bipolar fad faud stigma. Ironically, there is no coverage for treatment of psychopaths (also called sociopaths) or malignant narcissists, known to be the most dangerous people around with many in the psychiatric profession.

      Why do you think this is so when Torrey like others of his ilk claim to be so concerned with identifying and treating so called dangerous people while they make sure to avoid these most dangerous people? See Dr. Robert Hare, a Psychologist and world authority on psychopaths, and creator of the PCL-R test to identify them and author of Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us and Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work. He also has a web site and has written tons of articles. Google psychopaths and narcissists and you will see many are dealing with this menace despite psychiatry’s avoidance of this growing menace that Dr. Hervey Cleckley, another expert, warned about in the 1950’s with is classic book, The Mask of Sanity.

      I must say I was thrilled and surprised about the many comments protesting this horrible, bogus, vile, dishonest program giving Torrey and Lieberman more attention as so called experts that they certainly don’t deserve. The drug company ad in the beginning and massive psych drug ads on TV in general explain this horrible infomerical of the worst possible kind.

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      • Hi, Donna. No, the text doesn’t get into any of that. They mention bipolar, ADHD, etc. as psychological disorders and then they get to schizophrenia when all of a sudden they switch to “brain disease manifested in the mind.” Funny you mention Hare, as we’re just dealing with psychopathy now and Hare’s “research” was indeed talked about.

        I’m interested in what you say about Torrey et al staying away from psychopathy. I wouldn’t have expected that. Would you mind expanding?

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  4. People need to realize the obvious truth and reality about Adam Lanza:

    He was CULTIVATED in weaponry (in more than one way). His home life WAS weaponry, both literally and in first person shooter games. Weaponry was his mentality, the way his mind was structured. What will people say, he was taking psych drugs and then he and his family, as a result of the drugs, began building an arsenal of weapons? I don’t think so, but I think people should ask: what came first, the weapons or diagnosis and drugs?

    American culture and society ARE VIOLENT. The drugs are toxic and deadly for a lot of people. That is TRUE, all on it’s own. But it is ALSO true that American culture and society ARE SICK. People in THIS country have NORMALIZED verbal and mental abuse.

    Domestic violence is domestic war. It is ALL I HAVE EVER KNOWN.

    For years, I’ve called YouTube “battlefield youtube” because it IS a battlefield. Yahoo is just as filthy, disgusting, violent, abusive, “stupid”, “moronic”, DEMONIC – the list goes on and on. Oh, and visit The White House’s Facebook page to see some of the absolute WORST behavior. They ARE sickening, sick, violent, abusive, demonic, immature and out of control – and it is a real war.

    People tell the truth all the time: stupid, crazy, idiot, psycho, schizo, nut job, whacko, looney tunes, moron, loser, piece of shit, asshole, kill yourself…

    It is verbal, mental and emotional SLAUGHTER.

    People talk the talk and it is NO SURPRISE when the words come to FRUITION.

    BULLY epidemic, how YOU doin’?

    At the time when a documentary called “Bully” hit the screen, a movie called “The Hunger Games” also hit the screen. Bully was OBSCURED BY THE DRAMA OF IT’S RATING – and did NOT have the audience that The Hunger Games had. Even if Bully’s rating hadn’t been a controversy, that movie NEVER would have had the millions upon millions of viewers.

    I’m not asking anybody to stop the lies. I’m asking, when will people BE HONEST?

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  5. I would say that we can talk all we want to people who don’t want to hear us and pretty often it’s wasted energy. If, instead, we put this energy into speaking up in more neutral forums that are set up to validate our point of view, a lot more good advocacy work might be done.


    How many Boston people went to the full day dialogue this Saturday? I emailed and Facebook invited and phone called my 10 Boston friends despite my brain injury which makes communications hard work still. Guess how many responded to me? Instead we’re going to get all het up and make 60 minutes feel like their show was successful because it gets a lot of feedback. How many other 60 minutes show on how many other topics tell just one side of the story? It’s always a one sided show.

    Why waste our time on people who don’t want to hear us? Instead, lets get out there and participate in those forums where our input is wanted and they are set up to handle multiple opinions.

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    • The thing is, if we stick to forums that validate our point of view, we may not find that validation in an argument that is extremely divisive! I agree that it’s difficult to convince those who so strongly believe they’re ‘right’ otherwise (I tried with our friend Mr. Jaffe for a long time), but given the gravity of this issue, (and the powerful interests parroting Torrey), some kind of confrontation may be necessary. Zones of relative comfort, where many people agree with everyone else, can impede progress, whether on ‘our’ side or others’.

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  6. Hi Corinna,
    I certainly hear you, but I also think it is important to respond to all media events if we possibly can. Many of us were in Harrford at NARPA this weekend and could not be in Boston.
    Thank you always for all of the wonderful work that you are doing.

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  7. Hi Dorothy,
    Thank you, for all that you do. I recently saw your video on LinkedIn and want you to know that you are a Survivor, but in your article here I can’t stress enough that you are also right on target. Last year I was hospitalized for depression and the doctor treating me gave me anti psychotic medications for sleep after I told her that it causes me to have suicidal tendencies, agitation and anxiety and she ripped me off my anti-anxiety medication. Two days later I attempted to hang myself in the bathroom.

    When I met with her in rounds the next morning I told her that I would not take the medication anymore and it was not helping me to sleep but making me worse. She then prescribed the same type of medication with no other option I took it. ( the medication was thorizine) The next morning after not sleeping because I was agitated from the thorizine because like I told her I could not take anti-psychotic medications, I told her I would no longer take any of those medications in it’s class. She then added tegretol to my medication regimen. I agreed and took it even though I knew it would not help. I was still feeling unsafe and depressed, I think partly because of all those medication changes and I told her to please not release me till I was feeling better. The very next day she told me that they wanted to start ECT and I told her that it was not going to happen. She said she would take me to court. Like you she changed my diagnosis from major depressive disorder to Schizoaffective Disorder and in hopes of verifying it badgered and harrased me for the next 10 days along with the staff. You can read my story which was featured in The Westchester Guardian here http://wp.me/p3VDMY-h5 .

    The fact of the matter is that medications have side effects that cause agitation, paranoia, suicidal tendencies and make symptoms worse. Teenagers are put on these medications like they are candy and the parents are okay with it because they are not properly educated about it. Young kids at the age of six are on lithium. When was lithium okay to give to a six year old and FDA approved for that? When was celexa approved to give to an adolescent? Psychiatry has become a market place and a breeding ground for corruption. Since my ordeal with New York Presbyterian Hospital I have been an avid Mental Health Advocate.

    You are an inspiration to many psychiatric survivors and we need more people like you to come forward with their stories. People are scared and don’t know how to go about placing complaints. It has been my experience that one complaint takes at least three months to get a response and then in some instance you have to resend the same complaint and fight with the organization to actually have it investigated properly and still because of politics it isn’t. Currently my case is being investigated by the DOJ special litigation and ADA, the office of civil rights under the department of education because NYPH violated HIPPA and went to my school and releaed my medical records without my consent.

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