How Doctors Became Such Prolific Drug Dealers

Lawrence Kelmenson, MD
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It began in 1954, when Milner/Olds1 published a study which showed that all rats, if able to press a bar that electrically stimulated a part of their brain dubbed the pleasure center, did so frantically and endlessly. They went wherever the stimulation was given, even if having to endure painful shocks to get there. They didn’t eat, drink, sleep, mate, or nurse their young, and soon died. This implied that: 1. A potential for addiction isn’t unique to the morally weak lower classes as was then thought (or an addictive nature as is now taught), but is intrinsically present in all mammals. 2. Using science, man can elicit and control it, and 3. He can capitalize on it to manipulate the masses to do as he wishes.

Light bulbs likely went on in many entrepreneurs’ minds about the huge, as-yet untapped market of suckers waiting to somehow be transformed into addicts and thus forever-returning clients, like Milner’s rats. Perhaps those people who considered themselves too upstanding to resort to illicit drugs could be lured into using new, similar ones if couched as non-addictive wonder drugs that are easily obtained from respected, trusted, knowledgeable authorities (doctors). Many real miracle pills (antibiotics) had just been found, so faith in new breakthroughs was high; it was perfect timing.

This may be why the maker of the addictive pill Miltown first shelved it in 1950, but then brought it to market in 1955 as a stress reliever.2 It was called a happy pill, was used to make Miltinis at parties, and produced a third of all prescriptions in 1957 — the first blockbuster drug. It also explains why another drug company set out to create similar pills in 1955;3 this led to two blockbuster benzodiazepines: Librium and Valium (the top-selling pill 1968-1982). Doctors knew these were all addictive; Miltown’s creator and NIMH’s Addiction Research Center acknowledged it.4 Doctors also began heavily dispensing stimulants as diet aids in the 50s, despite knowing they’re addictive too.5

Why did doctors knowingly participate in these scams?

Doctors only had middle class incomes until then6 (it was before boons from Medicare and long-term diabetes, cholesterol, hypertension and ulcer care). Becoming drug dealers rapidly enriched them via huge volumes of in-and-out clients who return reliably and eternally once hooked. So goodbye house calls!

But after 20 years of big profits, the public caught on that daily use of such pills led to tolerance to their benefits and withdrawal when stopping them. They became stigmatized and business waned.

Since people, unlike rats, were thinking ahead and opting to avoid their addictive rewards, doctors had to devise new ways to trick clients into seeking them, in order to again thrive as drug dealers. So in the 80s and 90s, they began claiming, without any evidence, that all unpleasant feelings and sensations are Medically Treatable Diseases. And surprise! Their usual treatment, coincidentally, happened to be addictive pills. The transformation of normal, unavoidable aspects of life into MTDs made it not only justifiable, but a moral obligation for potentially everyone to come get euphoria-giving pills. Upstanding, responsible people obey doctor’s orders and do whatever’s medically needed to cure serious illnesses. This business model worked so well that clients knock down doctors’ doors for 400 million addictive scripts yearly. Nurse practitioners and physician assistants help meet the need.

Here are the main new, bogus MTDs and their addictive meds:

All of us feel anxiety every day, so calling it an MTD provided a legitimate reason for family docs or psychiatrists to addict hordes to benzos, including new entries Xanax and Ativan. Three times as many are now dispensed, and they’re involved in five times as many overdoses as occurred 20 years ago.7

We all get aches and pains as we age; 84% of us have chronic back pain at some point. So Chronic Pain Syndrome (CPS) and Fibromyalgia were invented to justify anyone’s getting opiates. They’re the most euphoric of all drugs, since they mimic our endorphins.8 For acute severe pain post-surgery/injury, thirty days of pills became the norm, enough to hook clients on their elating effect after the original pain eases. A strong opioid, hydrocodone, was the most prescribed drug every year from 2006 to 2015.91011 A new medical specialty, Pain Management, arose to strike gold.

ADHD’s creation provided an excuse for any teen or adult who finds it hard to stick to boring tasks (which is all teens/adults) to be given daily stimulants. Although not euphoric and addictive if used on little kids, treated kids never mature since they’re sedated by pediatricians rather than raised by parents and schools, making them easy prey for licit/illicit dealers as adults (they only learn to cope by mind-numbing pills). And if kept on stimulants into their teens, they’re directly led down this path. Speed is now the medicine most prescribed to teens.12

Everyone feels sad at times, so that too was converted into an MTD. Antidepressants aren’t euphoric, but they’re gateway drugs to the above addictive pills, in three ways: 1. Since they’re placebos13 their initial benefit fades, so users try one after another in futile quests for cures;14 they can then get desperate enough to move up to a pill that’s sure to give good feelings, even if addictive. 2. They lure people to dealers’ offices, where they’ll be subliminally tempted to report symptoms that lead to the good stuff (benzos, speed, opiates) being added to their medicine cocktail. 3. They’ll feel more justified using opiates once diagnosed as having depression, since it’s said to hurt and is called the new cancer. This may be why they sell so well despite being fakes. Antidepressant users often get benzos at the start; the majority do get opioids;1516 it’s likely why opiate use rose in tandem with them.

Addiction itself became an MTD, even though most addictions are now directly or indirectly (from mom’s purse or medicine cabinet, or from peers who took their parents’ pills) caused by medical treatment. Unsurprisingly, the main pill addiction medicine specialists use to treat opioid addiction (suboxone) is yet another opioid. People hoping to try or continue an opioid habit licitly now just have to claim they’re addicts hoping to quit, in order to score endless suboxone. Heroin addicts use it to tide themselves over until the next fix, or to sell to raise cash for it.17

How Long-Term Opioid Prescribing Produced a Chronic Pain Epidemic

Pain patients are initially rewarded with relief or highs from their pills. But daily opioid use shuts down the body’s endorphin production; it gets the body to think that there’s no need to make any since there’s plenty around already.181920 So they lose all ability to give themselves pleasure (enjoy things they once enjoyed) or resolve any distress; only pills can provide these from now on.

Then the pills inevitably stop giving any pleasure; now they’re needed just to curb withdrawal symptoms like insomnia, anxiety, agitation, and pain that occur if a dose is missed (only more drugs can stop drug withdrawals). Doc cleverly says these are CPS symptoms, to trick patients into staying on the very pill causing them. Once clients say, “I need it — it’s the only thing that helps my pain so I can function,” doc owns them. This turning of acute, severe or mild chronic pain into incessant severe pain explains why chronic impairing back pain rates spiked 162% from 1992-2006, but acute back pain rose just 43%.21

Users ultimately become tolerant to their dose, so it no longer relieves withdrawal; they thus need the dose raised just to take the edge off. As the cycle repeats, their withdrawal symptoms (such as pain) get so bad22 and doses gets so high that they die by motor vehicle accidents, falls, suicide, or overdose. It’s caused the life spans of white people (doctors’ biggest suckers) to steadily fall for 20 years.23

All doctors learned these realities in pharmacology/physiology classes in med school, as I did. This knowledge gave them choices: Either protect clients from harm by avoiding such pills (that’s why opiates used to be given rarely and briefly except in cancer cases), or exploit clients by hooking them for life. There are no good intentions in dispensing daily opioids, stimulants, or benzos. Three governmental studies242526 proved that it doesn’t help but only hurts. “Our medicines ease suffering” really means: “Thanks, Milner/Olds, for showing us how to make a killing by inflicting agony that only we can relieve.”

Show 26 footnotes

  1. “Positive Reinforcement Produced by Electrical Stimulation of the Septal Area and Other Regions of Rat Brain” Olds, J, Milner, P, J Comp Physiol Psychol 1954;47;419-27.
  2. “Frank Berger, 94, Miltown Creator, Dies” Carey, B, New York Times, March 21, 2008.
  3. “The History of Benzodiazepines” Wick, J, J Amer Society of Consultant Pharmacists, Sept 2013,28(9)538-48.
  4. “Warning is Issued on Tranquilizers” New York Times, Dec 30, 1963, p. 23.
  5. “America’s First Amphetamine Epidemic” Rasmussen, N, Am J Public Health, June 2008,98(6)974-85.
  6. “Why Doctors Complain: A History of Physician Income” Patterson, R, KevinMD.com, Sep 2, 2012.
  7. Bachhuber, M, et al “Increasing Benzodiazepine Prescription and Overdose Mortality in the United States, 1996-2013” Am J Public Health, April 1, 2016, 106(4)686-8.
  8. “Opiate-like Substance in Brain May Hold Clue to Pain and Mood” Schinieck, H, New York Times, 10-2-1977.
  9. “Hydrocodone History and Statistics” Patterson, E, Drugabuse.com (from IMS Health 2006-10).
  10. “Top Drugs of 2014” Bartholow, M, Pharmacytimes.com, July 12, 2015 (from IMS Health 2010-14).
  11. “The 10 Most Popular Prescription Drugs in the US” Ramsey, L, Businessinsider.com, Oct 26, 2016 (from GoodRx 2015).
  12. “Trends of Outpatient Prescription Drug Utilization in U.S. Children 2002-10” Chai, G, et al, Peds, 2012, 130,1,23-31.
  13. The Emperor’s New Drugs: Exploding the Antidepressant Myth, Kirsch, I, 2010, Basic Books.
  14. “How Many Antidepressant Meds Have You Tried” Kaitrin, Depressionforums.org, online survey begun on Aug 15, 2004.
  15. “Etiology of Chronic Pain and Mental Illness. How to Assess Both” Gatchel, R, et al, Prac Pain Man, Nov 2011,11,9.
  16. “Prescription Opioid Use Among Adults with Mental Health Disorders” Davis, M, J Am Board Fam Med, June 2017.
  17. “Addiction Treatment has a Dark Side” Sontag, D, New York Times, Nov 16, 2013.
  18. “Effects of Morphine Treatment on Pro-Opioid Melanocortin System in Rat Brains” Brain Research, 1990:519(1-2)102-11.
  19. “Tolerance of Hypothalamic Beta-Endorphin Neurons to Mu-Opioid Receptor Activation after Chronic Morphine” Zhang, G, et al, J of Pharmacological Experimental Therapeutics, 1996;2,77;551-8.
  20. “Cellular Mechanisms of Opioid Tolerance: Studies in Single Brain Neurons” Christie, MJ, et al, Molecular Pharmacology, 1987;32;633-8.
  21. “The Rising Prevalence of Chronic Low Back Pain” Freburger, PT, et al, Arch Int Med, 2009, 169(3)251-8.
  22. “Painkillers Can Sometimes Increase Chronic Pain” Burke, S, Spine-Health.com, 7/13/2016.
  23. “Drug Overdoses Propelling Rise in Mortality Rate in Whites” New York Times, Kolata, G, Cohen, S, Jan 17, 2016.
  24. “NIH Pathways to Prevention Workshop; The Role of Opioids in the Treatment of Chronic Pain” Reuben, D, et al, Ann Intern Med, 2015, Feb 17, 162,4,295-300.
  25. “Raine ADHD Study: Long Term Outcomes Associated with Stimulant Medication in the Treatment of ADHD in Children” Western Australia Department of Health, Feb 2010, p. 6.
  26. “Systematic Review of the Benzodiazepines” Committee on the Review of Medicines, March 29, 1980, Br Med J, 280(6218)910-2.

225 COMMENTS

  1. And let’s not forget that deinstitutionalization occurred in the during this same period when psych drugs started becoming available in the 1950s-60s. All these folks who had been traumatized and institutionalized were drugged up “so they could live independently” (or were homeless).

    Humans have a desire for short-term fixes (e.g., feel better now), and I think doctors and big pharma exploited this reality in our brains. Nobody really enjoys feeling any emotional pain, and luckily for us these drugs numb us or change our emotional state, so we like them (sometimes)! Once someone is physiologically hooked, they are dependent on the system to maintain that status quo. Doctors, one could argue, are no different than bar keepers, liquor store owners, or local corner drug dealers. But they have the law on their side.

  2. I enjoyed reading this. It made me chuckle a few times. I’m not in the frame of mind to feel much motivated to defend people suffering from functional disorders such as fibromyalgia. You seem very dismissive of them. I suppose some people have a higher tolerance for pain than others. But if it’s ruining someone’s life, popping pills is probably the lesser of two evils. Certainly chronic insomnia induced by unremitting pain would be nothing to scoff at.

    But scoff some will and no matter.

    What advice would you give a sufferer of fybromyalgia? “Stop being a sissy and get over yourself?”

    Actually, my GP would probably say that. He doesn’t mince his words.

  3. I’m sorry, but not all pain is created equal. Perhaps this is news to you, but some people do suffer more than the everyday aches and pains that more than 84% of the population has had at some point and it can be truly disabling. Do you have any idea what it is like to be in your 20s and have a complex injury that kept you from walking more than 500 feet maybe 2 times a week (and otherwise had at stay at home sitting or laying all day) for nearly 3 years? Really sick of the ableist attitudes sometimes on display at MIA.

    Am I saying that opioids or other addictive meds are the answer to pain (physical or emotional)? NO. However, you seem oblivious to one of the reasons why people with chronic pain conditions feel compelled to resort to dangerous treatments in an often desperate attempt to make pain subside- the lack of understanding and accommodation from others. We are often made to feel that pain is something we can push through, we are not deserving of accommodations that allow us to maintain some semblance of productivity (e.g., working from home). This attitude everyone has pain, everyone gets anxious or sad, etc only fuels the lack of empathy and understanding towards those who suffer in disabling ways.

    • Thanks, cali, for your perspective and acknowledgement that many people are in great physical pain from serious illnesses and not just “drug-seeking”. We should never be blaming the patient. I would like to see more research dollars and insurance payments for more holistic treatments, i.e. massages, Reiki. I was at a meeting at the hospital I work and I was astounded to hear a MD state how opiates pay the bills and how other treatments work but “not a money maker”. I wish you well.

      • Thanks, knowledgeispower. I find Lawrence’s dismissiveness of the the legitimacy of chronic pain both disappointingly hypocritical for MIA (aren’t many people here because a psych dismissed their emotional pain?) and upsetting. I agree that more research on holistic treatments would do a lot of good. I have seen some benefit from vitamin therapies…namely vitamin d3/k2 and magnesium . Money being the driver of MDs has certainly been my experience. Many docs (especially rheumatologists) get pissy if they can’t drug you up with potent meds like steroids, dmards, etc. If you say you want them to monitor you/your labs but want to try natural therapies instead of these drug therapies, they will make you feel like you are a waste of time.

  4. Hi Lawerence,
    Having recently been in hospital for what is thought to be one of the most painful kinds of surgery, I have to say that I’m feeling pretty grateful for modern analgesia. It’s been a couple of weeks and I’m now down to anti-inflams and paracetemol.

    I understand that this is a polemic, but one reason for clamping down on pain after surgery is to prevent chronic pain conditions developing, because they do exist, and they make life miserable for sufferers. I had pretty open access to opiates for a few days. I was lucky to not have much need of them, but one of the things that alleviates suffering is compassion and not feeling afraid of pain becoming unmanageable. Ironically, if I had been subjected to a judgemental, punishing attitude to being in pain, as I’ve experienced in psychiatry, my fear and pain would have been greater, and I probably would have asked for a lot more.

    Pain was managed with a wide variety of drugs including anaesthetic agents, steroids, anti-cholinergics, anti-inflammatories, and paracetemol with an eye to potential dependency and opiate-induced hyper-algesia. (not sure how that is spelled). -Being pretty bored in hospital, I was asking a lot of questions of the staff about the drugs.

    What you have written makes important points but I don’t think it is a particularly fair account, certainly compared to my most recent experience.

  5. Hi Lawrence, just a thought. But is the epidemic an aspect of humanity transiting into post-modernity? Lot of pain and suffering caused, l know.

    But is it possible that the epidemic is a feature of humanity waking from the nightmare of history, in a 21st-century realization that we are not our mind’s?

    Psychiatrists are described as doctors of the mind, and as a doctor, can l ask you ‘how’ your own mind, your patterns of thought, is energized?

    Or, as a well educated person who recognizes words and numbers, like your name and your age. Can you write a few word’s about how you walk & talk. How these two quintessential human behaviors are subconsciously orchestrated by your nervous system?

    And is our fixation on the issue of medications, a feature of our normal avoidance of our inner environment, as we ‘reflexively’ keep the energies of our attention firmly focused on the environment beyond our skin.

    As l say, this just a bigger picture thought, and l’m not trying to embarrass you, by asking you HOW you do, Being Human.

  6. Lawrence

    Why did/do doctors/psychiatrists seek a higher and higher income by buying into the disease model and prescribing more and more drugs?

    Why does Big Pharma (colluding with psychiatry) corrupt the scientific process, create new diseases, and sell more and more new drugs to treat them?

    The answer is simple: PROFIT, WEALTH, AND POWER – THE BEDROCKS OF MODERN CAPITALISM.

    Lawrence, why is it that you never target the capitalist system in any of your writings? You seem to only want to focus on the “symptom” of a much larger “disease” in our society.

    Richard

    • Richard, I agree 100% that so-called “capitalism” *ALLOWS* the gross excesses you describe, but I DISagree 100% that capitalism *REQUIRES* these excesses. I say, the excesses of capitalism arise from human nature and greed, and are NOT a requisite feature of capitalism. Making money is not inherently bad or good, and neither is capitalism.

      • Bradford

        The law of survival in capitalism is to achieve the highest rate of profit by any means necessary OR be destroyed or eaten up by other competing capitalists.

        Where is there ANY evidence that the capitalist system somehow arises from human nature? Human nature is an extremely malleable entity in the world.

        In some ENVIRONMENTS human beings can be very loving and cooperative. In other environments that promote competition for survival of the worst kinds, human beings can and will be violent and very selfish.

        Bradford, it is the ENVIRONMENT that triggers these types of behaviors and patterns of human nature. Just as it is the ENVIRONMENT that can trigger normal responses (depression, anxiety, psychological disassociation etc) to abnormal (traumatic and stressful) conditions that get labeled as “mental illness.”

        The powerful elites who run the capitalist system want us to believe (and spend billions propagating these lies) convincing us that capitalism is somehow an expression of an inherent quality of human nature. Just as they spread similar lies justifying the Medical Model.

        Bradford, don’t fall for these lies, you are better than that.

        Richard

        • Your reasoning is circular, Richard, as regards “capitalism”. I’m saying that “capitalism” *ALLOWS* the excesses that you and I rightly reject. But *I* am saying that “capitalism” DOES NOT REQUIRE these excesses. When you use “ENVIRONMENT” above, I don’t think you mean, “sky, and air, and water, and plants and trees and soil, etc.” Don’t you mean “human environment”? 99.99% are CAPABLE of murder, but 99.9% DO NOT murder. Human nature *allows* murder, but human nature does NOT *require* murder. Seriously, Richard, I think your mind and thought process are tripping over your own ideology, and “anti-capitalist” emotional bias. And rhetoric. I do appreciate your critique. But I can’t agree, because I think you’re misunderstanding what I’m saying. Just because I *CAN* take drugs, doesn’t mean that I *MUST* take drugs. I’m saying the same thing, in essence, about PhRMA AND “capitalism”. And psychiatry. Just because we have psychiatry, doesn’t mean that we need psychiatry. I bet you’d agree on THAT, Richard! Thnx!, ~B./

          • Capitalism follows specific laws — such as that the purpose of capital is to generate more capital, at any cost. If murder is required, no problem. Of course exploitation without murder is preferable from a p.r. standpoint; plus it’s hard to further exploit dead people. But corporate profit is always the bottom line.

    • Richard, why is it that you never target your own system, in writings about revolution?

      Are you unaware of your nervous system and the subconscious dynamics of your conscious recognition of words & numbers?

      And joining the choirs cheers for Robert’s outing of psychiatric opinion masquerading as knowledge, do you ever wonder how the word Anatomy, was chosen in the title word formulation?

      Was there a subconscious prompt of the body, perhaps?

        • Big Picture, oldhead. The Systems created by human beings are subconsciously orchestrated by their nervous system, just as our self-nurtureing intellectualism about they and them is.

          Just trying to get folks to notice how they much prefer to write about the politics of experience, rather than the experience of experience.

          The word Anatomy, can of course be used in different contexts, but if we don’t believe in the medical perception of mental illness, then we are left with anatomy and the experience of the body.

          Or are you convinced that you are your mind? Richard is a long-time therapist who knows the mysterious ways of our subconscious Self. And as Carl Jung said of the paradox in our human motivation and perception, when your certain that your fully conscious, you should probably think again.

  7. It’s a relief to read you, Lawrence Kelmenson. It is not enough to be a scientist coldly analyzing the consequences of drug trafficking, we must still explicitly denounce drug dealers. And whether they are petty criminals or graduate doctors, it’s the same scum: we need a revolutionary law that strikes them equally and without any mercy.

  8. Lawerence, You have written about a searing issue in today’s world.
    As always I wear several hats on this issue.
    1) Having worked on a medical floor in Social Services pre opioid era there were huge pain issues for folks. Sickle Cell Anemia who mostly come out of an African American population base were sometimes not believed by some of the staff. Elderly folks with compressed spinal fractures were totally incapitated.
    So pain was a huge quandry on multiple levels.
    Pain used to be used as a diagnostic tool back in the day.
    Salk developed a vaccine for Polio. He refused any monetary gain. And why NOT others?
    How this all became so awful is still unbelievable to me. Who was supposed to be monitoring the ethics of ALL of this?

  9. Profit, wealth, and power are the bedrocks of all the inane socialist doctrines that have somehow managed to linger even after the terrible destruction that they caused during the last century. A little healthy capitalism keeps such nonsense at bay.

    But that is beside the point. Excellent article Lawrence. You hit the nail right on the head. I would add that drug dealer doctors represent just one of the many snares that draw the innocent into the foul clutches and the bloody maw of psychiatry.

  10. Slaying,
    I think you inserted “socialist” with “capitalist” by mistake. Remember it is capitalists who put their aim at making the most amount of money they can, often without thinking or caring about the long terms risks. Just ask all the rich investors who buy drugs and then jack up the prices. Remember Martin Shkreli? Lovely capitalist human right there. Or the 2008 housing bubble which was driven by greedy lenders and deregulation.

    • So-called “capitalism” is an economic system. So-called “socialism” is a political system. Neither can exist without the other. They both require each other.
      But I prefer the words of Bob Marley, from the song, “Get Up, Stand Up(for your rights”:
      I’M SICK AND TIRED OF YOUR ISM SCHISMS!
      And I’m sick and tired of the pseudoscience drug racket known as “psychiatry”.

  11. No. I was constrained to refute Richard’s socialist diatribe because he was trying to pressure Lawrence into blaming psychiatry and drug-dealing doctors on capitalism. The lack of historical perspective in some of these conversations would be laughable if it weren’t so appalling. Are psychiatry and big pharma all about profit, wealth, and power? Of course. Does this mean that we should try to transform the United States into a socialist utopia? Not remotely. In any case, these things are a distraction from the main point, namely, that Lawrence’s article is spot on: doctors are prolific drug dealers.

    • For the record, socialism is not envisioned as utopia but as a temporary reversal of the present dictatorship of the 1% over the 99% to the opposite, pending the abolition of class systems altogether.

      However I do think DS is right about focusing on the main point, as the larger context is a given.

      As for ALL mh professionals, the time has come to stop repeating things we have long known on MIA and start actively campaigning against the lies and destruction being wreaked in your names.

      • Oldhead

        You said: “However I do think DS is right about focusing on the main point, as the larger context is a given.”

        Since when is targeting capitalism in these discussions some sort of distraction?

        The so-called “larger context” is NOT yet understood by very many people, that is, the intimate connections between capitalism and the Medical Model, and how their future is inseparably intertwined.

        Both DS and Lawrence want to have an abstract discussion about the evils of the Medical Model WITHOUT drawing any connections to the System that needs and sustains this oppressive Psychiatric/ Pharmaceutical/Industrial/Complex.

        We cannot end all forms of psychiatric oppression without discussing these much larger questions of economic and political context.

        Richard

    • “Are psychiatry and big pharma all about profit, wealth, and power? Of course.”~Slaying_the_Dragon_of_Psychiatry

      Of course? Whatever happened to health?

      I think the blind spot in your description, Dragon Slayer, must be capitalism.

      How does the Department of Environmental Protection become the Department of Environmental Devastation? Capitalism and capitalists…Unreal estate is big, big, big. Just fly over the land mass sometime, and gaze down at the patterns of human intervention.

      • DS would likely argue that this is not capitalism but “big government,” an ambiguous term people who lean right use as a catch-all scapegoat for the failures and contradictions of capitalism itself. Supposedly “true” capitalism is almost no government at all — except for the military and its arsenal of destruction, just in case…

        • Ah, the magic of the “free market.” Worked great in the early industrial revolution, leading to sweatshops and kids working 80 hours a week and slave labor and… oh, wait, that’s still happening, isn’t it?

          Anyone who believes that the “Free market” will solve everything should visit Malaysia or Indonesia and see how our running shoes are assembled. Capitalism unchecked leads to a few rich people and a lot of poor ones.

          • Capitalism is exploitive in practice. This is why regulation is necessary. Humans have yet to find a balance where everyone wins. There always seems to be “losers” (in any system) in reality. I think income disparities will only grow as the human populace increases. About 1 billion of the world’s population still doesn’t have access to clean drinking water!

          • shaun f

            You said: “This is why regulation is necessary.”

            The key question is “regulation by whom?”

            As long as we live in a capitalist society the so-called “regulation” will always be controlled by those who hold the key instruments of power. Thus the wolf will be overseeing the chicken coop.

            Just calling for “more regulation” is a dead end and a sham.

            Richard

          • Regulation isn’t a sham. We need regulation to prevent excessive abuses within the system, like monopolies and sub-prime loans. Of course regulation will be controlled by those in power; this is the case all around the globe. We need regulation that protects the poor and middle class, but unfortunately this isn’t a priority for the 1%.

          • Excessive abuses, huh? So ‘abuse in moderation’ is okay with you? One would though, I imagine, have to conduct an thorough investigation to determine how much abuse was taking place. Without prosecution, too, I don’t see any way for abuses to go except up.

            Drug, drug, drug is the mantra of the mental health movement and the system it fosters. This begs the question of what is excessive drugging unless you say, as I do, most all of it.

          • Frank,
            NO, I never said any abuse is “ok.” Wwhen it comes to psych drugs, the FDA and state licensing boards are there to help “regulate” the industry, and many would argue they are doing a poor job of it. Many people do get excessively drugged by their doctors. I see it all too often. I understand why people think psychiatry is a sham; PCPs, however, are also largely responsible for their prescribing practices. They are the ones who often start people into the world of benzos, SSRI’s, opioids, etc.

          • shaun f

            You said: “Regulation isn’t a sham…but unfortunately this isn’t a priority for the 1%.”

            You are not making sense here. Under this system, regulation is most certainly an utter “SHAM.” It is NOT “unfortunate [ly]” that the 1% do not not make this a “priority.”

            It is their very nature as capitalists to take care of their own class needs at the horrible expense of the broad masses. Why do you expect any thing different from their rule?

            Richard

          • Richard,
            Conservatives value deregulation because it helps them make more profits. I think there are many examples of regulation which has protected the environment and people. The creation of the EPA helped to eventually clean up the polluted waters in America. Regulation also helps prevent consumers from being exploited by creditors. The concept of regulation isn’t a sham, but when industries are deregulated, everyday citizens usually suffer in the long rung.

          • shaun f

            Yes, you are correct that some regulation fought for against ruling class interests has helped protect the environment and people to a small degree..

            BUT, in the long run you CANNOT regulate capitalism and somehow make it work for the majority of the people. Capitalism must be eliminated as a barrier to human progress, or it will destroy the planet through Imperialist war or by destroying the environment.

            Therefore, in the long run “regulation” IS a SHAM.

            Richard

          • Richard,
            I’m just not sure what the viable alternative to capitalism is? I mean, most of the industrialized world is capitalist to one degree or another. Humans have yet to perfect any system which avoids exploitation of land and people.

            Regulation doesn’t have to be a sham if the regulators are righteous, but far too often politicians are corrupted by the system. In America, for instance, we now treat corporations as people. We have super pacs which wield immense power. The rich run things. The rest of us fight for the scraps. The current system is unsustainable, but I just don’t see what we could realistically replace it with.

          • Posting as moderator here.

            If you are honest with yourself, the vast majority of comments don’t even vaguely reflect a Marxist viewpoint, and very few truly do. I think it’s a gross overgeneralization to suggest that more than a small fraction of people who post here identify as Marxists (not that there is anything wrong with being a Marxist, mind you.) Even if they were, you have been a strong advocate for making sure that certain possibly minority or at least less empowered viewpoints get a full hearing here. I think this should hold also for any and all viewpoints, no matter whether they are popular or not, as long as they are consistent with the purpose of this site. I think we want to try and create an environment here where people don’t get to shout other people down just because their viewpoint is not popular or is threatening or because one person simply disagrees with it. After all, aren’t most of the views that are expressed here unpopular or threatening to the general public?

            I’d like to make sure that we are open to and supportive of all viewpoints that are consistent with the goal of protecting people from the lies and power dynamics of the “mental health” industry as it stands today. Maybe for you, Marxism isn’t a valid answer, but it is certainly a valid topic for discussion and should be viewed as such. You’re welcome to challenge why a particular person believes Marxism will work or to provide evidence that it won’t or provide your own alternative ideas, but not to generalize negatively about people who identify as Marxists simply because you don’t like Marxism. In other words, I challenge you to critique the ideas of Marxism, rather than trying to downgrade the people who might find them convincing.

          • Dragon Slayer, you seem to be undergoing a personality change; I wonder what has come over you — some new political influence perhaps? At any rate you seem to have abandoned your focus on psychiatry to return to bashing political abstractions such as “marxism.” As Steve suggests, why not deal with the ideas involved — not as you have them written off in your personal “talking points” but as they are presented by real people? Personally I try not to even address labels such as “marxism” without a joint understanding of what is meant by the term.

            Have you seen the recent Psychology Today article by Pies (see link)? Your talents are greatly needed to refute such drivel, should you choose to adhere to the principle of choosing one’s battles. This is addressed to everyone really. What we should all be looking for in the anti-psychiatry movement is common ground which links the concerns of those who identify as both “right” and “left” — terms which have become largely meaningless anyway in our current retreat from literacy.

            https://www.psychologytoday.com/gb/blog/freud-fluoxetine/201808/the-reality-mental-illness

            (Thanks to Auntie Psychiatry for pointing this out.)

          • Oldhead and All

            Oldhead, you said: ” What we should all be looking for in the anti-psychiatry movement is common ground which links the concerns of those who identify as both “right” and “left” — terms which have become largely meaningless anyway in our current retreat from literacy.”

            This political position on the anti-psychiatry movement (or any human rights struggle today) is DEAD WRONG and a prescription for failure, and a guaranteed path into REFORMISM.

            There is NO such thing as reconciliation between Left and Right perspectives and their particular blueprints for the world.

            Correctly defined, “Left” represents an anti System/capitalist perspective. And does not yet necessarily require an exact agreement on the replacement for the class based /profit system of capitalism. This will be ultimately be determined in the course of the revolutionary struggle that transforms the world.

            “Right” in today’s world represents holding onto, and defending, an oppressive status quo of class oppression and all the other manifestations of inequality. And for some it may even mean going backwards towards more outright fascism and ultra authoritarian rule.

            These two world outlooks cannot, and should not, be reconciled.

            Therefore, Dragon Slayer’s world (or anyone else’s on the Right) that somehow wants to eliminate psychiatry (which is really impossible because of the inseparable links between capitalism and psychiatry) would still be a highly oppressive world, with ALL the other forms of human rights oppression.

            Oldhead, would you really want to live in this world, even if psychiatry was somehow missing (which again, is impossible)???

            ANY, and ALL, politically advanced organizations taking on human rights struggles in today’s world (such as, anti-psychiatry) must have an anti System perspective if it wants to have ANY MEANINGFUL impact on changing the world for the better.

            We accomplish NOTHING of substance in the world today, if we are not educating and drawing together people, who eventually grow to understand that there is NO human progress in this historical era (in fact, the planet and the human race will die from environmental or nuclear destruction) as long as the capitalist system continues to exist.

            Organizing from this anti-capitalist system perspective actually creates favorable conditions (over time) for many of those people currently on the Right to shift to a more Left position. This will NOT happen with a watered down attempt to reconcile “Left” and “Right.”

            Oldhead, the surprising and confusing thing here is that you know exactly what I am saying is true for every other human rights struggle. You have been correctly advocating for a similar position here at MIA for several years.

            BUT, when it comes to the anti-psychiatry movement, you somehow abandon your revolutionary politics and opt for a watered down, impossible reconciliation of “Left” and “Right.” This is very sad and disappointing. I hope you will take a serious look at the contradictions in your position here.

            Richard

          • “A Marxist echo chamber”? Good one, Dragon Slayer. I never heard that one before. Got any others?

            Left-wing sentiment is far from predominant at MIA. I imagine your objection must be that right-wing sentiment isn’t predominant. Alright, but that’s a good thing as far as I”m concerned.

            I think it is possible for right and left to work together in opposition to psychiatry, if that’s okay with you. Alright, why not do so? Division among us, as far as I’m concerned, only empowers our enemies.

            In George Orwell’s 1984 you had Thought Police. In this world you’ve got, same thing, the mental health authorities. You don’t have to be left or right to oppose that kind of intrusion on our potential, but it helps.

          • BUT, when it comes to the anti-psychiatry movement, you somehow abandon your revolutionary politics and opt for a watered down, impossible reconciliation of “Left” and “Right.”

            Not a contradiction. There is no “reconciliation” of capitalism and socialism. But this is largely irrelevant to the struggle against psychiatry at the moment, which is not at that level of political maturity. For example, to exclude Dragon Slayer on such a basis would be insane, as he understands the nuances of psychiatric oppression more than most people at MIA. (Though he seems presently to be excluding himself.)

            The primary clash in the AP movement is between anti-psychiatry survivors and “mental health” professionals, regardless of ideology. And currently the so-called “left” is probably more supportive of psychiatry than the “right.” I don’t see why you don’t spend more time addressing this.

            “Mental patients” comprise a sort of “quasi” class within the formal class structure, and there are significant battles to be won which need not wait for a general uprising.

          • Oldhead,

            “The primary clash in the AP movement is between anti-psychiatry survivors and “mental health” professionals, regardless of ideology. And currently the so-called “left” is probably more supportive of psychiatry than the “right.””

            What evidence supports that the left is more supportive of psychiatry?

          • I don’t think either left or right is particularly supportive of stopping human rights abuses and protecting the so-called “mentally ill” from being lied to and having their lives shorted by doctors claiming to understand and help them. But such POLITICAL objections that I have heard have come mostly from the right, who assert excessive government interference when people are forced into “treatment.” I have not heard any coherent objections from the political left to this kind of “treatment.” Of course, when someone with a gun does something scary, the right are the ones quick to blame “mental illness” while the left blame lack of adequate gun control, so let’s be honest, it comes from both sides of the aisle.

          • What evidence supports that the left is more supportive of psychiatry?

            Show me an anti-psychiatry “leftist” who isn’t already posting at MIA. The cry is “more funding for mental health.”

          • In Russia, no longer the Soviet Union, it is still a “mental illness” to disagree with the government. In China, the “mental health” hospital system has been used to suppress some religious sects. In the USA, the “mental health” system is used to segregate and isolate eccentrics and non-conformists. I think there is a great potential among left and right for building a movement to oppose these kind of oppressive measures on a global level.

          • I agree. When the “left” and “right” are reconfigured into the “authoritarian” and the “anti-authoritarian” or “non-authoritarian,” we may make some progress. Some folks on both left and right agree that corporate corruption of government is a huge issue. If we can get together with such folks and come up with some agree-upon tactics, we’d be in great shape. But my experience is the majority of people asserting “left” or “right” politics are really following some authoritarian dogma, regardless of what they claim. And it’s hard to get dogmatic people to think beyond their dogma.

          • Liberals these days, in some cases, ARE much less likely to go up against the law than rightists. The right wing has a valid issue regarding government intrusions, that the liberal left, playing up centralism and federal spending, often neglects. On the other hand, there is also the anarchist black bloc, and a great deal of potential for support among the more radical left, but you’re talking about a much smaller contingent of people there I would imagine.

          • I think authoritarianism is a problem in most states and among most people. Do something about authoritarianism (mental health expertise, for instance), and you might be getting to a more worthwhile place all the way round.

          • Oldhead

            You said: “The primary clash in the AP movement is between anti-psychiatry survivors and “mental health” professionals, regardless of ideology.”

            This is a classic example of your dip into “Identity Politics” which is very connected to your unfortunate “reformist” proposal to reconcile with the Right Wing in the anti-psychiatry movement.

            The anti-psychiatry movement (in the making) is in a fundamental (life and death) clash with the Psychiatric/Pharmaceutical/Industrial Complex (PPIC). And the PPIC has become an important pillar of the capitalist system. THIS is the main struggle going on, and we all need to recognize and identify this.

            For you to over emphasize contradictions between survivors and professionals is straight up Identity Politics in this context. Of course, these contradictions must be addressed, but we must know our priorities in the overall struggle and where those particular struggles (among the “people”) fit in.

            In the anti-psychiatry movement (in the making) where the hell are all these “clashes” between survivors and professionals you describe as the principle conflict? There is an extremely small number of professionals today who are (all the way) anti-psychiatry.

            In any anti-psychiatry organization formed today, professionals would represent a tiny tiny minority. Why do you want to focus on (and foment) this contradiction into something it is NOT?

            At a future time, I will go much deeper into the question of the negative role of *Identity Politics* in current political movements, including in the AP movement. I am surprised that YOU would be the one to champion such positions.

            Dragon Slayer has serious limitations in his ability to understand the OVERALL role of psychiatry in the world today, and especially, how to go about abolishing it. That does not mean that I don’t occasionally pick up a nugget or two of understanding from him in the course of his writings.

            I would have no problem working in an organization with DS, IF he accepted principles of unity that involved anti-System language connecting psychiatry to capitalism.

            In today’s world, for an anti-capitalist political activist person such as yourself, to be actively building ANY human rights struggle attempting to reconcile the LEFT with the RIGHT, is flat out wrong and straight up reformism.

            Oldhead, please reconsider your position here, you are better than this.

            Respectfully, Richard

          • Oldhead,
            Conservatives want to reduce government spending in general (although clearly they don’t practice this belief when it comes to benefiting themselves), which is why they don’t support spending for “mental health treatment.” Many of them, do, however, believe that mental illness is a legitimate concern. They just don’t love the idea of universal healthcare. There are plenty of conservative veterans who believe in PTSD.

          • Lawrence,

            I was talking about regulation in general. There are many good examples of how regulation has protected consumers; for instance, requiring that cigarette packages have a warning label has probably helped to reduce tobacco use over time (as well as rising the costs through taxation). When it comes to MH treatment, regulation has done very little to protect consumers. The FDA has failed, as well as state boards.

          • In today’s world, for an anti-capitalist political activist person such as yourself, to be actively building ANY human rights struggle attempting to reconcile the LEFT with the RIGHT, is flat out wrong and straight up reformism.

            Richard:

            “Left” and “right” are abstractions. I’m concerned with PEOPLE. No matter what our political philosophies, there are issues that we share and can organize around. Do you consider every struggle to be invalid unless it is couched in the rhetoric of class analysis? Excluding those with less-than-perfect analyses is not a wise method of movement-building to me. People learn as they go along. Further, those here who extol the supposed virtues of capitalism are actually victims of capitalism; should they be further victimized by excluding them from anti-psychiatry as well?

            BTW I wasn’t talking about clashes between survivors and professionals “within the movement,” but in general. There are precious few professionals who could be considered part of the anti-psychiatry movement. (And yes, I would consider you one of the few.)

            Finally, you have been asked by myself and others repeatedly to define what the term “identity politics” means to you; without a response it’s hard to address.

          • I’m all in favor of fielding a variety of viewpoints and hashing out political differences, but it is disingenuous to pretend that MIA is a completely neutral forum for discussion. There are few, if any, genuine conservatives who comment here, and those who dare to question the dominant liberal paradigm are anathematized, at least by Richard.

            Steve writes: “If you are honest with yourself, the vast majority of comments don’t even vaguely reflect a Marxist viewpoint, and very few truly do.”

            Do Richard’s comments not reflect a Marxist viewpoint? Please correct me if I’m wrong. As a moderator, you need to be honest with yourself. If a Marxist or a liberal paradigm is a minority or less empowered viewpoint that doesn’t get a full hearing in MIA, then I’m captain Jack Sparrow.

          • I said the majority. There’s also a very big difference between Marxist and liberal, as Richard I’m sure will passionately agree. And there are definitely conservative folks who post here, as well as “centrists” and anywhere else on the political spectrum. There is no requirement that people believe in any particular political worldview to post, only that they are respectful that their views are not the only ones that can be heard.

          • Oldhead

            You said: ““Left” and “right” are abstractions. I’m concerned with PEOPLE. No matter what our political philosophies, there are issues that we share and can organize around.”

            How can you ever say that: ““Left” and “right” are abstractions…”

            The “Right” is the current status quo. The “Right” is the class in power TODAY. The “Right” IS the capitalist system, with ALL the horrors that go with it.

            Tell all the people in the world today that are currently harmed by the status quo of capitalism. that they are suffering from an “ABSTRACTION.”

            The “Left” are all those people in the world organizing legitimate (not Liberal reformist) opposition to capitalist oppression, and comprise many of the important human rights struggles around the world.

            Many of these people are putting their lives on the line everyday; some are dying in the course of the struggle. Tell all these people that are really some sort of “ABSTRACTION.”

            Oldhead, when you say “I’m concerned with PEOPLE…” are you implying that somehow I’m not concerned with people when I put forward my political perspective?

            And when you say “No matter what our political philosophies, there are issues that we share and can organize around.” Does that mean advanced political activists should work with ANYBODY? Do I need to spell out who “ANYBODY” could be? You can’t really be saying this with any careful thought.

            And when you say “… there are issues that we share and can organize around.” I would say “organize” for what purpose, and exactly what kind of world are we trying to create here?

            Psychiatry is NOT an ABSTRACTION. It is very much an important cog in a specific type of system, in a specific historical era.

            The struggle against psychiatry and the Medical Model is an important human rights struggle in the world today. It is currently in desperate need of some type of advanced political organization to lead the struggle both ideologically and politically, which eventually includes organized direct actions.

            No advanced political organization attempting to lead an important human rights struggle in this era can EVER reconcile the “Left” with the “Right.” What kind of world are we trying to create here?

            You said: ” Excluding those with less-than-perfect analyses is not a wise method of movement-building to me.”

            I am not in any way suggesting that people need to have a “perfect” analysis or that we should not be trying to win over the broad masses, including some people who are on the “Right” at this time.

            None of these important bigger shifts in public opinion can, or will, EVER take place WITHOUT the role of advanced political organizations leading important human rights struggles. And these types of organization MUST have a “LEFT” tilt to their overall analysis and strategical orientation, otherwise we accomplish NOTHING in the long run! And we will most certainly end up being in the REFORMIST dust bin of history without a “Left” leaning compass to guide our political direction.

            Richard

          • Very well. Let’s work this out. Steve claims that there is a very big difference between Marxist and liberal. He also claims that there are definitely conservative folks who post here. Let’s examine these claims. What is the difference between Marxism and modern liberalism? Are Richard and Bonnie Burstow Marxists or liberals or neither or both? Also, who are the conservatives that post comments here? What is a conservative? And to return to my original question, is it possible for a person to be 100% antipsychiatry and also a genuine conservative?

          • The obvious answer to the last question is “yes.” As to the rest, seems like we’re getting WAY off track here. But I’d bet that very, very few posters are in favor of nationalizing all industries and completely eliminating corporations and private ownership of stocks and that sort of thing. Marxism is the most extreme version of anticapitalism. Most “liberals” are in favor of stuff like Sweden and Denmark and Japan, where the government makes sure that people are able to survive the worst fallout from the profit motive, but companies are still privately owned and driven by profit. I don’t think that point is even worthy of debate – it’s simply obvious from the kinds of policies they promote. Even Bernie Sanders, avowed “Democratic Socialist,” has never even started to go down the path of nationalization of any industry or corporation. He just wants everyone to have healthcare coverage and decent wages and that sort of radical craziness.

            Sorry, but Marxists are very, very rare in the US of A, including on MIA.

          • To All

            DS asks: ” …is it possible for a person to be 100% antipsychiatry and also a genuine conservative?”

            I would answer emphatically NO!!!

            To be a 100% anti-psychiatry in today’s world you must understand psychiatry in all its origins, social and political manifestations (especially as a vital institution of social control), political and economic connections in society etc., AND THEN MOST IMPORTANTLY, based on this analysis, be able to chart a course towards what it will require to ultimately ABOLISH this institution from our future society.

            A “conservative” by definition in today’s world is most definitely a supporter of a class based capitalist system. This means overtly (or covertly through bias and ignorance) defending and supporting all the inequalities of class, race. sex etc. etc.

            A “conservative,” because of their biased and limited understanding of class based oppression, CANNOT understand how psychiatry (with its executive powers to drug and incarcerate people) is used as a vital institution in maintaining social control of the more potentially volatile (rebellious) sections of society, such as minorities, women, prisoners, and other system outliers.

            A “conservative,” because of their political blind spots, CANNOT understand the role that the capitalist profit motive plays/has played over the past 40 years in accelerating the growth of psychiatry in collusion with Big Pharma.

            NOR do “conservatives” understand (or have a problem with) the excessively high rate of profit that the pharmaceutical industry has accumulated via the sale and promotion of psychiatric drugs and psychiatric labeling, AND how this situates the Psychiatric/Pharmaceutical/Industrial Complex as an essential cog in the entire U.S. economy.

            Also, “conservatives” DO NOT understand how the the future of psychiatry as an institution (because of its social role and economic importance) is now inseparably bound to the future preservation of the capitalist/imperialist system.

            And “conservatives” either overtly support the current political trend towards fascism in this country, OR they covertly “enable” this trend (as do Liberals) because of their political biases and blind spots about the oppressive nature of a class based capitalist system.

            AND FINALLY, “conservatives” (and also Liberals) who do not understand the full connections of psychiatry to the capitalist system, have NO CLUE as to what kind of radical political organizing will be necessary (in the real world) to actually have a legitimate chance to ultimately abolish psychiatry from human society.

            Therefore, it is very clear that “conservatives” who hold onto and retain all their political biases and blind spots, DO NOT EVEN COME CLOSE to being 100% anti-psychiatry.

            Richard

          • Well said, Richard. I do think it’s important to also distinguish from social and economic conservatives. The former is concerned with things such as abortion and gay marriage, whereas the latter group is most interested in lower taxes, increased profit margins, deregulation, and reducing the size of the government (but usually still support military spending). At the end of the day most conservatives believe in the capitalist system, and thus it would be difficult for them to support abolishing psychiatry and limiting big pharma from attaining their profits.

          • “Sorry, but Marxists are very, very rare in the US of A, including on MIA.”

            Hopefully conscious Marxists are becoming more rare. It’s just strange how so many of them ended up here on MIA. Unwitting Marxists are a dime a dozen.

            Thankfully, Richard has answered my question. His tirade demonstrates exactly what is wrong with the Bonnie Burstow school of antipsychiatry. Richard’s definition of “conservative” reveals the many blind spots in the progressive liberal paradigm. He goes so far as to brandish the worn out trope of “fascism.” Even those with the most cursory training in history and the most basic powers of reasoning comprehend that modern liberal progressives are the direct inheritors of Mussolini styled fascism and the very philosophies of eugenics that antipsychiatrists should most vehemently oppose.

            But Richard’s theories don’t hold water. I am more opposed to psychiatry than anyone on this planet, and I also understand the philosophical, political, economic, and social origins of psychiatry better than anyone on this planet. I am 100% antipsychiatry BECAUSE I am a genuine conservative (not one of these straw men conservatives that Richard likes to beat up).

            Therefore, Steve answers “yes,” and Richard answers “no.” Which is it? Can genuine conservatives be 100% antipsychiatry? Bonnie Burstow’s utopian vision of antipsychiatry and Richard’s anti-capitalist diatribes almost persuade me to be pro-psychiatry. Almost.

          • [Continued]

            DS asks: ” …is it possible for a person to be 100% antipsychiatry and also a genuine conservative?”

            I would answer emphatically NO!!!

            This is so wrong, and so divisive, that it’s almost embarrassing. I can’t believe Richard would say this, as it lends credence to some of Dragon Slayer’s claims. This strikes me as dogmatism, not Marxism — which does not currently even have an anti-psychiatry analysis, or identify psychiatry as a tool of repression. Not that the analysis would be out of place were it to be incorporated, and would in fact dovetail quite nicely with the notion of alienated labor under capitalism.

            On another note, I don’t remember shaun ever identifying as anti-psychiatry so I don’t know why he feels qualified to be taking positions on such strategic matters. Maybe he would care to explain this contradiction.

          • Oldhead

            You have thrown out words such as “wrong” “divisive” “embarrassing” “dogmatism,” but provided absolutely NO ANALYSIS to my last two comments in this comment section.

            Psychiatry is NOT an ABSTRACTION!. It does not live in a bubble isolated from the world that surrounds it. Psychiatry has a history, an evolution, and certain important factors in the world that have nurtured and accelerated it growth in the world.

            “Conservatives” (due to their political biases and blind spots) do NOT fully understand all these factors that give psychiatry and the Medical Model its sustenance and ability to grow and expand in its influence in society.

            If someone cannot fully understand or dissect the social, economic, and political environment that gives psychiatry its reason to exist, then they will be INCAPABLE (unless they rid themselves of their biases and blind spots) of understanding how psychiatry can be removed from that environment.

            Oldhead, where is there any critical analysis in the above comment?

            Richard

          • Is the handle a psyop – ?
            The dropping of the ‘identity bomb’ works as if – or as much as if it were intended to divide.
            ‘Handles’ are identities and leverages upon or set over a sense of threat of lack.
            Words with original true meanings are masked in to pass off as real and thus devalued.
            Meanings that drift from a truly shared recognition become like fake money; a currency of exchange that floats as if apart and outside the world as truly lived. Derivatives of derivatives are like fragmenting identity fragmentation of split minded evasion from; What Is; Truly Current; Now or Always 😉

            Noticing the current active investment in being ‘This’ or ‘anti-That’ is the instant of opportunity for expansion to an embracing perspective – if that is what you want. If a habitual action or reaction is indeed your current choice, then re-evaluation it has only made more conscious your appreciation of freedom to accept or choose. But when the reaction is in a sense of persistent or repetitive negative outcomes, the re-evaluation of acquired beliefs and identifications, is within the desire for a better or more coherent outcome – and I feel that that is the difference between replicating ‘head stuff’ as a self-reinforcing habit, and identifying habits that call to be re-evaluated because there is something true being denied by something false being accepted in its place.
            The idea of changing the mind is actually part of the freedom that Mind Is. But the idea of forcing change on the mind is the origin of the belief that you have become something ELSE, different, and split off from – BY the investment and identification in WANTING to live such a ‘changed’ experience. The desire for a true peace of unconflicted self and world, is different from wishful thinking, because it is the stirring of a recognition that the current ‘reality’ is not true, valid or ultimately ‘real’ despite it being part of our current reality experience – as feedback to what we are thinking and desiring, now (perhaps as old habits that seem to run tyrannous to our sense of subjection).

          • “Even those with the most cursory training in history and the most basic powers of reasoning comprehend that modern liberal progressives are the direct inheritors of Mussolini styled fascism and the very philosophies of eugenics that antipsychiatrists should most vehemently oppose.”

            Kinda don’t think so, Dragon Slayer. Doesn’t pass my smell test. The people who did the state the service of offing Il Duce were resistance fighters and communists, and I’m certain they would be very offended indeed with any effort made to connect them to the policies and actions of Mussolini.

            “On 25 April 1945, allied troops were advancing into northern Italy, and the collapse of the Salò Republic was imminent. Mussolini and his mistress Clara Petacci set out for Switzerland, intending to board a plane and escape to Spain. Two days later on 27 April, they were stopped near the village of Dongo (Lake Como) by communist partisans Valerio and Bellini and identified by the Political Commissar of the partisans’ 52nd Garibaldi Brigade, Urbano Lazzaro. During this time, Clara’s brother posed as a Spanish consul. After several unsuccessful attempts to take them to Como they were brought to Mezzegra. They spent their last night in the house of the De Maria family.

            The next day, Mussolini and Petacci were both summarily shot, along with most of the members of their 15-man train, primarily ministers and officials of the Italian Social Republic. The shootings took place in the small village of Giulino di Mezzegra and were conducted by a partisan leader who used the nom de guerre of Colonnello Valerio. His real identity is unknown, but conventionally he is thought to have been Walter Audisio, who always claimed to have carried out the execution, though another partisan controversially alleged that Colonnello Valerio was Luigi Longo, subsequently a leading communist politician in post-war Italy. Mussolini was killed two days before Hitler and his wife Eva Braun committed suicide.”

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benito_Mussolini

            Emphasis added

        • Actually blaming big government is not just a right wing term although modern day words have taken a life of its own and of course the American Party associated with the Right likes to use this while the American Party on the left likes to use corporations when they both mean the same thing.

          Proof of this from a copy-paste on the Wikipedia section of the 2nd Amendment of the United States Constitution:

          “While both James Monroe and John Adams supported the Constitution being ratified, its most influential framer was James Madison. In Federalist No. 46, Madison wrote how a federal army could be kept in check by state militias, “a standing army … would be opposed [by] a militia.” He argued that state militias “would be able to repel the danger” of a federal army, “It may well be doubted, whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops.” He contrasted the federal government of the United States to the European kingdoms, which he described as “afraid to trust the people with arms,” and assured that “the existence of subordinate governments … forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition”

          If you look up the Wikipedia article on James Madison, this was no right wing conservative:

          “He became increasingly worried about the disunity of the states and the weakness of the central government after the end of the Revolutionary War in 1783.[27] As Madison wrote, “a crisis had arrived which was to decide whether the American experiment was to be a blessing to the world, or to blast for ever the hopes which the republican cause had inspired.”[28] He was particularly concerned about the inability of Congress to capably conduct foreign policy, which threatened American trade as well as settlement of the lands between the Appalachian Mountains and the Mississippi River.[29]

          Madison helped arrange the 1785 Mount Vernon Conference, which helped settle disputes regarding navigation rights on the Potomac River and also served as a model for future interstate conferences.[30] At the 1786 Annapolis Convention, he supported the calling of another convention to consider amending the Articles. After winning election to another term in Congress, Madison helped convince the other Congressmen to authorize the Philadelphia Convention for the purposes of proposing new amendments. But Madison had come to believe that the ineffectual Articles had to be superseded by a new constitution, and he began preparing for a convention that would propose an entirely new constitution.[31] Madison ensured that George Washington, who was popular throughout the country, and Robert Morris, who was influential in the critical state of Pennsylvania, would both broadly support Madison’s plan to implement a new constitution.[32]”

    • Why do we think a totalitarian dictatorship is the answer?

      Absolute Dictators and Pharmapsychiatry will just become best buddies in the end. Like the pigs and piggish humans at the end of Animal Farm.

      Already we can see this happen with the bribes (lobbying) that got Murphy’s Law passed.

        • Not quite Oldhead. Progressivism has brought us closer to the kind of totalitarian regimes that ravaged Europe and Asia, particularly in the 20th century, but we’re not quite there yet. Woodrow Wilson, FDR, and JFK were benign dictators, as were Bush, Clinton, and Obama, but they weren’t Hitler, Stalin, or Mao. Even Trump is more of a benign, progressive demagogue than most people realize. Progressives have been paving the way towards a new totalitarianism for quite some time. Fortunately there are still those who stand athwart history, and the history of psychiatry, yelling “stop.”

          • We live in such a thoroughly totalitarian state that most people take it for granted. You just like “our” bastards better. Plus Mao is still a hero to peasants in China, where his picture is in almost every hut, just like that of Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam. And there is currently a resurgence of Maoism in China.

            As for “progressivism,” like I said before, definition please?

          • The ‘front man’ might be the one making the decisions, or they may be walled in and handled by an inner circle or even be a knowing actor puppet to powers that confer protection and privilege.

            The political sideshow has always been a sideshow, and the methods of deceit have always been employed to capture and direct the mind of the demos by the hieros.

            The idea of ‘rule by consent’ is close to the idea of aligning in the law of love. The giving of consent to a deceit is the giving away of power to an illusion of power. This can also work in giving away power to the illusion of protection to a perceived and believed threat.

            Consenting choice is a result of an informed decision, and so the information relating to the outcomes of such a decision have to be clearly appreciated.

            The capacity to give consent is the capacity to listen or receive and hold information – that includes relational qualities as well as what we usually use information to refer to.

            Purpose aligns the forms of meaning that are accepted in the mind. When conflicting ‘identities’ fight for the mind, it splits into the conserving of the ‘little that remains’ and the escape from the pain and fear of such a conflicted state. Perhaps to a sense of a golden age that the sense of LOSS implies was once, but which was denied, or deprived by this or that facet of a larger pattern that is never allowed to be brought to light as a whole.

          • There are white supremacists and neo-fascists behind Donald J. Trump. He knows who helped put him in office. He can’t dis progressives without, at the same time, tossing a wink to the alt right. I’d say there might be a real danger of totalitarianism lurking about, but the danger is more pronounced from the right than it is from the left.

          • Oldhead,
            The definition of a totalitarian state is one which requires complete subservience to the state, like the Handmaid Tale or North Korea. The US doesn’t come close to approaching this level of government control in our daily lives.

          • Shaun, don’t think I’m missing your comments, I just don’t think most of them require responses.

            Interestingly one of the most cogent examinations of brainwashing and mass programming in the U.S. was produced in North Korea. Maybe they recognize the methods.

          • shaun f but that journey to totalitarianism is a slippery slope. I’ve learned this by observing the differences between America and Australia. Much more of our lives are regulated here, and Australians generally (despite their convict origins) colour between the lines.

            In China, the social pressure of “fitting in” becomes greater and greater, and many Westerners are also slaves to those social media devices, and many of our young people do not know what privacy is, nor do they find it desirable.

            So – for the pleasure of belonging, the ball and chain of devices is welcomed, and minds are controlled so much more easily than with Soma. And the telescreens – people clamber to get the newest hottest portable telescreen devices.

            The old “totalitarianism” is unnecessary. The bread and circuses of the telescreen is all that is needed (coupled with the soma of psych drugs) to control the masses.

            it is a slippery slope.

          • JanCarol,
            Yes, it is a slippery slope. We have a POTUS who is an authoritarian and attacks anyone who he perceives is against him. Not good.

            Regarding social media use, cell phones are ultimately a choice in terms of how we use them. The government certainly isn’t forcing anyone to use “smart phones” if we don’t want to. Frankly, most of what goes on with social media and smart phones is just about advertising and selling products. It’s not about controlling us but maybe keeping us numbed out to some degree. The truth is that if we woke up we would see that the economic system is heavily benefiting a relatively small group of people at the expense of the rest of us. That is what we should be concerned with IMO.

            I’d suggest using a different word to describe the situation than “totalitarianism”. If we describe the current state of affairs as the same as true totalitarian regimes, then we watering down the real thing, like North Korea. That place is nothing like Australia or the US.

          • shaun f – I continue to be amazed at how people who recognise the problems with chemically fiddling neurotransmitters (psych drugs) think that our use of the devices is purely voluntary and “we can control it,” when it is zapping the dopamine – especially in our children who are being raised with this protocol – and interrupting our attention. It is the *job* of the device to zap dopamine and interrupt attention. This device has permission to interrupt anytime.

            I’m sure there are a few who put chains and keep it in a lead lined box and only use it when they choose – but there are too many who are falling into the dopamine trap as easily as a psych drug.

            Just because you have a choice doesn’t mean that it’s not a dangerous drug. Especially for children who are becoming hard wired to this. A choice? Corporate programming, which is still totalitarian.

          • You are right that our modern computer/phone technology is highly addictive. My point is that it’s designed this way for profit not social control. People make lots of money off of this technology, and frankly many of it’s users are happy to spend our money on it. Certainly many people become addicted to anything which increases dopamine. I think that we do have a choice as adults as to how we use it. My phone doesn’t control me! I do have trepidation when it comes to children using it, because their brains are still developing. It’s a huge industry which is why Apple, Microsoft, et all, are worth so much. We as consumers do have a choice. We can’t blame companies for all of our problems. We do need to take some personal responsibility in this situation. If there wasn’t a demand, there would be no supply!

          • “I’d say there might be a real danger of totalitarianism lurking about, but the danger is more pronounced from the right than it is from the left.”

            Benign totalitarianism has been a part of the progressive, therapeutic state since Woodrow Wilson. Wilson and his cohort were great promoters of the therapeutic state, as was JFK. The Clinton dynasty was no different. Bush declared 1990-1999 the “decade of the brain.” Obama launched the “Brain Initiative” in 2013. It’s not the in your face, masculine totalitarianism of Hitler or Stalin. It’s a “compassionate” totalitarianism that smothers freedom in the name of “care” and “treatment.” In other words, psychiatry and the progressive, therapeutic state go hand in hand. C.S. Lewis was clairvoyant:

            “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

          • Steve,
            Going old school with your BF Skinner reference!

            PS your posts are showing up out of order on MIA. I get an email notification but then it shows up before other posts have been made on MIA. It’s a little confusing in the order of posts. Let me know if that doesn’t make sense! Maybe it’s based on time zone? See the times on these few last posts.

          • If he felt sufficiently threatened by you be assured you would not be posting this. Anyway the system is more sophisticated now, as it has programmed people to censor themselves for the most part. As for the others, well, there are political prisoners who have been locked up since the 70s.

          • A captured opposition does not have to know it is running as such. The way the mind-slavery works, is under the belief it is freedom.

            Mind-capture is a ‘system’ of usurpation of the true will, by a mind of conflict. Working from a mind conflicted is a kind of locked up entanglement with shadow self.

            We live in true being – even if we be-lieve in a false becoming and do not know we live in true being. Because we wanted to be different than we are – by whatever ‘ruse’.

            In the defending of what we think to have become under the conditions of such a sense of loss and the attempt to limit loss, is the control mentality that is innately blind to what we are.

            Fighting it, is feeding it, so I seek truth outside the frame of all such thinking. A truth I recognize I have not manufactured.
            Seeking freedom by standing in it – any way or in any way, may seem like a fight, but I believe that aligning with the true and free desire of our being is not strain at all. The ‘defences’ arrayed against such a clear seeing may be deeply laid, but no less undone by true recognition given allegiance.

            If an illusion operated instead of true. its undoing would be the witnessing to truth and not the focus in the false as the wish to eradicate or fix it. Both of which persist the reinforcement of the illusion as true.

            Obviously a continuity of self-recognition is the process of shifting perspectives over time as a result of experience. The mutually exclusive polarity is the split of a sense of self. We are familiar with the experience of a split sense of self.

            The experience of a reintegrative self appreciation is of a different order. Perhaps Big Brother et al, play an unwitting role in the eventual recognition of who we are NOT and what can never work in terms of a truly shared self appreciation?

            Would buying into self illusion be a ‘total’ experience of self-distortion even if it maintained itself as a shifting in and out of the various roles and facets of such a self and world?

          • “In a true totalitarian system we would not be posting this. Big Brother would not allow it.”

            Perhaps in a truly masculine totalitarian system. That’s not the problem that we currently face. We live in the nanny state, the therapeutic state, a feminine-styled tyranny that smothers freedom with “care” and “therapy.” Vigilance is still required. Big Brother is still a threat. But Big Sister is more of a threat because her tyranny is less obvious.

          • Oh, boy. This must explain why people were so scared of Hillary being president!

            If we really lived in a nanny state I assume we wouldn’t have millions of people who are homeless and tens of millions who are very poor. We clearly don’t provide “care” to those who need housing, basic healthcare, and substance abuse treatment.

        • Corporate engineering operates a different order of control – or rather, mind capture.
          So the goal posts of political thought are way behind the actual capture by open stealth through vectors of dependencies, real or substitute.
          The system that runs is the logical outcome of the accepted thinking of the day.
          The drive to GET and become ‘more than’ is indebting us under a tyrannous thinking – which is essentially blind to life.

          • Bush’s “compassionate” conservatism was closer to liberal fascism than, say, Reagan’s patriotism. In any case, I’m sure you see the problem inherent in calling 1990-1999 the “decade of the brain.” These are the kinds of things that show the direct connection between psychiatry and the therapeutic state.

          • Actually, it’s ironic that the “Decade of the Brain” research that was expected to find specific genetic or structural problems associated with “bipolar disorder” and “schizophrenia” and the like actually showed the opposite: that the human brain is incredibly flexible and capable of enormous growth and change, even in adulthood, in response to the environment. Other than the part about how early trauma causes brain changes (which fits with the “broken brain” agenda), very little of this research has seem the light of day, as it conflicts massively with the “bad genes” theory of “mental illness” and actually deeply supports the idea that positive relationships and a positive, supportive environment is the key to people avoiding or working through what has euphemistically been called “mental health symptoms.”

  12. The issue of chronic pain is an extremely complex one with a lot of unknown factors. I dealt with chronic pain for 18 years following a car accident and later a slip and fall on a wet floor at work. I was diagnosed at different Pain Clinics with Myofascial Pain Syndrome with multiple trigger points in my back and neck. When trigger points are activated by a minor task involving a twist or turn it sets off back spasms similar to having a Charlie horse in my back. When palpated the muscles are tight, knotted bands and there is often swelling. The pain from the spasms is excruciating and each episode can last anywhere from 2 days to 2 or 3 weeks. I tried many treatment modalities and many different pain medications, including a trial of the opioid Dilaudid. There was not any drug that helped much and the side effects were hard to tolerate. If the drug provided a little relief the side effects rendered me unable to think straight or to function and that was not acceptable to me. Instead I resorted to using infrared heat and as many holistic methods as possible. I appreciate Dr. Kelmenson acknowledges every situation is different. I agree opioids were likely prescribed too often and maybe too carelessly but I also appreciate my family doctor didn’t dismiss my chronic pain. I know her only goal was to try get me some relief. What does concern me however is to have chronic pain described in the blog as an “invented” diagnosis.

      • Thanks, littleturtle, for a balanced perspective. I work with dedicated group of internal and family medicine MDs. We see more patients who are IV heroin and fentanyl drug users in the hospital than patients who are addicted due to being prescribed for pain. We talk here a lot about abuse of power but what about abuse of free will? Certainly there are corrupt MDs but not the majority.

      • There is a difference between bashing DOCTORS, who are individuals who vary widely in their intelligence, competence, and ethics levels, and bashing PSYCHIATRY, which is a set of assumptions and beliefs and processes that are organized and promoted as a way of dealing with people who are seeking some kind of help with mental/emotional issues, or who are behaving in ways that are not illegal but are judged as upsetting or “weird” by our society (or certain powerful members of that society).

        There are doctors (including psychiatrists) who are ethical, hard-working, open-minded, and/or kind-hearted people. There are also doctors who are insensitive, lazy, rigid, and corrupt. And everything in between.

        But the psychiatric system of thought, including LABELING people based on subjective “disorders” with no scientific validity, JUDGING people for not fitting into society or having certain kinds of difficulties, LYING to people about their supposed understanding of the causes of these invented “mental illnesses,” as well as about the serious adverse effects of their “treatments,” CREATING AND SELLING diseases or disorders, DENYING real research that contradicts their dogmatic worldview, and FORCING people to accept “treatment” that is damaging and potentially deadly. I could go on.

        So it’s not DOCTORS I am criticizing. It is the intentional distortions of fact being passed of as “science” by the psychiatric leadership in collusion with the pharmaceutical industry. There is a BIG difference.

        • Cali made very good points, chronic pain is often disabling and people become desperate for relief so they take a risk with a dangerous drug. Until a person has experienced it him or herself they should refrain from making unfair judgements.
          Steve hit the nail on the head that we shouldn’t paint all doctors with the same brush (including psychiatrists) as there are some good ones. Unfortunately those few can’t change a corrupt system. It is a real injustice to people with chronic pain to have it described as “invented” when pain is often related to objective conditions, i.e. arthritis, scoliosis, spinal stenosis, or other painful conditions including myofascial pain or fibromyalgia that often follow trauma or injury but unfortunately for patients there is less objective evidence to prove it. Chronic pain has no easy answers and certainly the use of opioids have harmed patients and caused many deaths. But as far as the truly “invented” diagnoses, and diagnoses with no objectivity or evidence to prove them, psychiatry sure wrote the ‘book’ on that. And it seems their psychiatric drugs have done just as much harm as the opioids.

  13. The drug companies are getting on the NMDA receptor antagonists bandwagon to treat pain. Don’t buy it ! Evolution has it sorted – Mg is the fail safe to the firing of the NMDA. If you have enough Mg in your head, problem – within reason – solved. People who are low on Mg tend to have migraine and anxiety/panic attacks. It takes a long time to get enough Mg in their heads – at least 4/6 months – but once there those horrific migraines stop and remain low level irritants. Those nagging back pains go, the terrible panic attacks go.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mHgPfXHzJE&feature=youtu.be&t=46

    btw has anyone seen a bar tender deck a punter and jab a gin and tonic in their arse ?

    • Big Pharma is a big problem, and I agree with you about magnesium being something that can bring a lot of benefits. it’s already widely used in anaesthesia, btw.

      Part of the problem is the cost of research – it needs public money to prevent some of the giant moral hazards it has fallen into.

      I’d like to see more research into NMDA antagonists (including magnesium). Pain can be both severe and disabling. We could use more information to inform how to best help people. Having only recently been lucky to be successfully treated for a condition that had for a few months caused me to be in constant, grinding pain and caused disability that restricted my life down to a small number of steps per day and not much else, I’m hugely, bloody grateful for science, and to be living in a place that gave me my life back via US $80,000 worth of treatment, and people who were really kind to me in the process.

      • Drug NMDA receptor antagonists will not work- especially in the long term – the body will react against them. The only thing accepted on earth by all humans is Mg as a voltage gated ion to the NMDA, nothing else.

        The problem with humans is they think there is a way for them to become more human than human, this is clearly demonstrated in the history of art. When the great ancient Greek artists perfected realism in sculpture (Kritian boy) they stopped and started creating scupture that improved the human physical make up (Riace bronzes). Similarly humans think there is some drug/potion/lotion that is a mirical cure. This is how people become exploited and end up far worse off.

          • The problem with humans is they think there is a way for them to become more human than human

            Yes — this is the essence of much that is considered “progress.” And the essence of medical totalitarianism is treating physical death as the most horrible fate imaginable.

  14. Dr Lawrence,
    I, for one, am not afraid to bash doctors. They are not gods in my book but have waaay too much power.

    I love that you tell it straight, exactly how it is.

    For the most part, people can choose to be victims or fighters, no matter what the challenge. I have certainly been there myself. Two people with the exact same issues may choose to tackle them in extremely different ways. Doctors, of course, love to cater to the “victims” and diagnose and label and prescribe away!

    Thanks for the straight talk- you are of one my favorite authors here.

    All the best to you.

  15. It is easy. Normal people did not protest, no one dehumanized the normal people, so the main power of the state – the majority, do not see the problem in destroying and killing the psychological minorities. It is not their problem, when inquisition burned their slaves, those who were not accused for anything, they ate sth, and then they went to watch the show.
    Now, they are doing the same thing. Normal do not mean -empatic, or special. Normal do everything to harm those who are not “normal”.

    Manufacture of madness, and Re- visioning psychology. Without these books psyche means nothing. I can see the obvious superiority of the psychological minorities over the apollonian ego material psychopathy. The way normal are treating psychological man, this is a horror of dehumanisation, and they call it help.
    Szasz and, Hillman wrote books for people, not for biological machines who likes the brain fairytales, phenomenology of the psyche is not for pseudo medical butchers, it is for humans beyond material money obscurantism. And Those people are being destroyed, the pioneers. They are the victims of psychiatry, of the state, of the normal people.

  16. I’ve had two major surgeries in the past year. I don’t know why, but I didn’t have pain with either surgery. Of course I had some discomfort and I couldn’t lift or do the least thing that was strenuous, but I did not have any pain. Both surgeons insisted on sending me home from the hospital with a nice big bottle of hydrocodone! I told each of them that I didn’t want the pain meds and they insisted that I get them filled. So, I got the first prescription filled just in case the surgeon knew something that I didn’t, but I never had to take one pill of the prescription. The second surgeon told me that the only way he’d let me leave the hospital was if I filled the prescription of hydrocodone. I don’t know how he was going to enforce his edict since he didn’t go home with me but that’s what he said. So, I lied and said that I’d do it knowing that I had an already full bottle of the very same stuff that he wanted me to get. I’ve not touched one pill out of the bottle.

    It does seem to me from just my two experiences that the doctors give out opioids much too easily. I guess that they didn’t want me to get home, have pain, and then bother them in the middle of the night or during their vacation for a prescription so maybe this is why they forced the issue. I still can’t believe that I didn’t have any pain from the surgeries either in the hospital or at home.

  17. I sent to the address [email protected] this text and I propose everyone to send their messages there:
    Dear members of the council! I appeal to you as an absolute opponent of psychiatric coercion. I fully support the position of Supreme Commissar Zeid Ra’adAl Hussein! Psychiatric coercion should be excluded from acceptable in human community measures. I quote excerpts from the 2015 petition https://goo.gl/sMnJ6y
    «All people are equal in the rights.
    Everybody in the equal measure is endowed by the all declared human rights in the independence how a man looks, thinks, what kind of ideals he has.
    We emphasize – the respect in full measure rights of all people, of every human, conforms fundamental goals and essence of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
    We insist, that any usage the psychiatric lexicon is absolutely cynically and offensively for human dignity. We insist, that a determination of a will, senses, aspirations of human as a symptom of a disease is a monstrous perversion of the fundamental principles of morality and legality! That such determination leads to the cancellation of a legal personality of a human, of a complete decrease of his human value and thus justifies all forms of violence. In fact it leads to the denial of a recognize a human as a human! This is the absolutely racist, misanthropic ideology!
    We proclaim – the legalized psychiatric coercion is a one of most monstrous methods of a reprisal with objectionable people. Impacts, being applied against a human in the psychiatry – such as electroshock, psychosurgery, the impact of neuroleptics – destroy a human essence. They literally crumble his soul, mind, senses, aspirations, his flesh and bone. The psychiatric “treatment” is an incredible torture and destroying a human. We deny that the United Nations General Assembly has the right, supporting this biological racist doctrine, to exclude the part of the humanity from a recognition as human beings.
    We insist on the absolute necessity to recognize psychiatric coercion as the crime against humanity and to exclude it from acceptable in the human community measures»
    I assert that in many times more people signed this petition! But their signatures deliberately not were not taken account.

  18. It’s not just some doctors who are causing problems with all of this. Two years ago I ivied in a section of the city where people peddled hydrocodone pills door to door. One woman would take her brother’s three month prescription that he got from the VA and go door to door trying to sell the pills. I told her in no uncertain terms to never come back to my door with her pills. What have we come to in this country when people sell pain killers door to door? I don’t think that her buyers were buying them for pain relief.

    I didn’t get the idea that Lawrence was saying that people who experience great pain should just pull themselves up by their bootstraps and go on as if nothing was happening. What I got from what he wrote, and I do agree with this, is the idea that the medical community has tried to capitalize financially from all kinds of things without always having our true safety and benefit at heart. I left my old doctor and went to a new one because the new one was closer to where I lived. He immediately decided during our first visit that I was going to take statins. I believe that statins are dangerous and that they’re prescribed far too often to people. I stated that I would not take them and he stated to my face that I would do what I was told. I walked out of that office and never returned and I didn’t pay the bill either. The medical community in many instances bullies people into doing, not what is good for us, but what is financially good for the medical community.

  19. When all is said and done I must support Lawrence in what he writes here. I grew up in a family that didn’t take any kind of medicine at all. My grandmother and mother took care of us with their own version of “medicine” that medical doctors would never have approved of. My mother married a man who didn’t believe in going to doctors so we didn’t. I didn’t take any kind of medicine at all until I was in my forties and then it was for high blood pressure. My original GP was not in favor of putting me on the bp medicine so I quit him and got another doctor who was willing to put me on the meds. Now, some 30 years later I’m beginning to question the intelligence of my decision. After the bp meds I let myself be convinced that I needed to go on “antidepressants” and rue ever going on them. Today I’m free of those devil’s tic tacs.

    I believe that Americans take way too much medicine and doctors are the gateway to all of these drugs. We have a drug for everything these days and all kinds of invented diseases. Just watch the commercial television stations and count the number of commercials there are for drugs and for diseases that must be treated with drugs. It’s amazing. The pharmaceutical companies, combined with doctors, with the addition of direct to consumer advertising is wrecking havoc on Americans. I believe that Lawrence has it absolute correct.

  20. I think a lot of mysterious chronic pain conditions like FM and CFIDS may stem from malabsorption or poor diet. Lack of magnesium can cause a lot of symptoms linked to fibromyalgia. Iatrogenesis also may play a role. Many of these conditions were rare or non existent 50 years ago.

    • Rachel777 good point. Thing is, while I’ve always had some methylation issues all my life – my 20-30 years on psych drugs ruined my gut, endocrine and metabolism of nutrients. So – it is malabsorption (though I have a much better diet than “Standard American”) *and* iatrogenesis.

      As for Dr. K’s claim (in another article) that “institutionalisation” is causing more brain damage than neuroleptics, it’s hard to parse, because most institutionalised “clients” are on neuroleptics. I’ve watched people decay over the decades, and I blame the drugs. That someone cannot escape their anxiety, and fear of intrusive emergent challenges = institutionalisation (“I need my doc, I need my drugs”) That they suffered an IQ loss of 40 points (and suffer blurred vision) – I’m afraid I blame the drugs for that.

  21. @Dragonslayer

    What is the difference between Marxism and modern liberalism? Are Richard and Bonnie Burstow Marxists or liberals or neither or both? Also, who are the conservatives that post comments here? What is a conservative?

    Richard is a marxist, i.e. uses marxism as a tool to help understand social/economic dynamics. (And contrary to Steve I would not say that marxists are at all rare in the US.) Bonnie is an anarchist. You personally have never defined yourself, but are apparently still confused about the differences between others. It’s all pretty irrelevant in terms of MIA, which for the record reflects a primarily liberal, pro-psychiatry stance. I don’t think MIA is the place to be getting into the minutiae of different political lines, as currently both left and right (however they may be defined) support psychiatry.

    • I’m not confused about the differences, but I posed the question in order to provide an opportunity for people to clarify their positions. I found out that Richard believes that conservatives can’t be 100% antipsychiatry. I agree that MIA is a mostly a liberal, pro-psychiatry or critical psychiatry forum. I reject the pro-psychiatry and critical psychiatry positions on the one hand (whether from the left or the right), and the liberal, Marxist, anarchist positions on the other. That doesn’t make me popular here, but I don’t care. It’s truth that I’m after.

      • I guess we might have a problem with interpretation from my angle here, nonetheless, I don’t see antipsychiatry as a leftwing rightwing matter, that is, I wouldn’t want to unwittingly support psychiatry by encouraging divisiveness among us. I know Szasz had his issues with the east (and European) version of AP, however, I don’t think either should interfere with any efforts we make to blast that house of cards, institutional psychiatry, to kingdom come.

      • Acquiring truth via this matter will be hard when these words are part of the Politics in the English Language to begin with.

        The first few categories in the question can be “somewhat” defined for example but the last will ruffle some feathers because the word conservative is rooted to the word conserve which the word neo-conservatives have twisted around badly to begin with but then you have the entire word “conservative” which applies to most people on the left if you read most of the themes in this topic but it might shock a so called modern liberal to be associated with the term at all despite the fact that a simple Wikipedia search can show something like this:

        “Conservative liberalism
        Main article: Conservative liberalism
        Conservative liberalism is a variant of liberalism that combines liberal values and policies with conservative stances, or more simply the right-wing of the liberal movement.[12][13][14] The roots of conservative liberalism are found at the beginning of the history of liberalism. Until the two World Wars, in most European countries the political class was formed by conservative liberals, from Germany to Italy. Events after World War I brought the more radical version of classical liberalism to a more conservative (i.e. more moderate) type of liberalism.[15]”

        In order to dig up the truth then, you must be able to see through the truth rather than merely ask the truth. A question such as “what is a conservative?” when dropped post-question about modern liberalism and Marxism would drive away any chance of a philosophical or a historical discussion behind the last question to begin with.

  22. I tried to read all the comments, but I had to stop at “KnowledgeIsPower” and the claim that you are “getting the facts out there”. There are some facts mixed with opinion and very dangerous ignorance. It is my opinion that anyone making policy or stating publicly their opinion on pain, should have firsthand knowledge first. No, your little back pain incident doesn’t count. I do agree with you that these are common occurrences that do not call for opiates. So, let’s go through the article.

    We are taught about addictive nature because we have used scientific observation on humans, not rats. According to Dr. Dana Smith, “We believe there are three crucial traits that comprise much of the risk of developing a dependency on drugs: sensation-seeking, impulsivity and compulsivity…We can test for these traits using standard questionnaires, or with cognitive-behavioral tests, which can also be administered in an fMRI scanner to get an idea of what is going on in the brain behaviorally.” So, your conclusion is that man can elicit and control it. Do you have personal experience with this? Have you ever tried an addictive substance? I have tried many and not gotten addicted. One example is alcohol. My mother was an alcoholic. I used to drink casually. Now, I don’t at all.

    Next, you posit that “light bulbs likely went on in many entrepreneurs’ minds about the huge, as-yet untapped market”. In 1954? Really? We’re talking about drugs here. The way I understand it, discoveries are made, then entrepreneurs go crazy, so it makes no sense that Walmart would decide to make Xanax (or whatever it was then) based on a rat study, especially in 1954. I would think that a proper scientist would back up his theory with a proper example. You’re talking about feel-good drugs here, so what does antibiotics have to do with it? You just threw that out there.

    I’m not going to try to debate your expertise on our need for antidepressants, but I would like to point out that you give a reason for their popularity and reference a footnote #2 that gives a different reason. America was dealing with PTSD after so much war. Diet aids are different, though. Now we’re getting back into medical stuff, and your point seems to be that if it’s addictive, it’s a scam. Losing weight can save someone’s life. Addiction is a carefully weighed risk against that. If someone weighs over 450 lbs. for example, the risk would be worth it. I don’t call that a scam.

    The next point would be a good one, if you were a medical expert and this were an article making a medical point. Diabetes, cholesterol, hypertension and ulcer care are certainly making the medical community rich, when diet and exercise could avoid a pill, but Americans would rather have their fast food, so I’m not sure I would blame the doctors here.

    But then you lead into withdrawal, which makes no sense. We’ve gone back into your territory and you need to list off the drugs that actually involve withdrawal, not those associated with the above paragraph.

    In the next paragraph you starkly contradict yourself! If, as you say, man is in control and can elicit our addiction, how can you then say “people, unlike rats, were thinking ahead and opting to avoid their addictive rewards”?

    Now to believe your next point, we’d all have to be conspiracy theorists, but it is important to refute it anyway and I’ll say why in my conclusion, but to believe that all the doctors, or even a large number of them, got together and planned this is a bit ridiculous. Lucky for them the addictive drugs just happened to work for the problems you describe. Huge coincidence.

    Yes, everyone feels anxiety, but as I noted in another post, you imply that everyone is at the same level of anxiety by what you are saying. A bit of anxiety over a first date is different than getting chest pains, feeling so weak you collapse, losing your ability to speak or think clearly…all over having to call the water department.

    You should not be commenting on physical pain. This is a mental health site, and I think you have demonstrated that you don’t understand physical pain. It is not in your wheelhouse. I do agree with you, however, that CPS and Fibromyalgia were invented…to justify the doctors not being able to find an answer. They’ve done it to me out of laziness. Even though I have underlying causes, they’ve still given me those silly diagnoses. I also have a list of 25 other problems. My pain reaches 10 on a daily basis.

    I also agree that opioids are overprescribed, but now because of people like you, we are going in the opposite direction, and pain is not being treated at all. Pain Management doctors created this problem. Before my back surgery I was on Oxycontin, Hydrocodone, Soma AND Xanax! Of course, I didn’t take it all. As you said, people know better, but I quit that doctor eventually as well, because I realized he was part of the problem. This was way back in 1999. I then went for 5 years with no pain pills and it was hell.

    I disagree with how you characterize addiction, but it is silly to treat an opioid with an opioid.

    I have gone through all this trouble to refute your arguments, because this has been taken too far. It was taken too far the moment the CDC Regulations came out, but we had no warning for that, so now we must find a way to have them changed. I’m sure I won’t change your mind, but hopefully others will read this, because people are dying. This is not hyperbole.
    https://www.painnewsnetwork.org/stories/2017/9/4/how-chronic-pain-killed-my-husband
    http://nationalpainreport.com/chronic-pain-a-suicide-story-8835614.html
    http://www.lynnwebstermd.com/suicide-and-chronic-pain/

    The government, and our doctors, have made suicide a viable option for pain relief…not an impulsive, sad, I can’t take it anymore action, but a planned viable option. This needs to change. I don’t want to add that option to my list. When will that be? I honestly don’t know.

    • One of the reasons I respect the comments on MIA is that most of those who talk abut extreme states have actually lived them. There is so much wisdom expressed here that is not usually accorded the respect it deserves.

      The exception can sometimes be when people talk about extremes of anxiety and depression. I’m using the medical jargon terms to save time. I’m not suggesting that diseases called anxiety disorders or Major Depressive Disorder actually exist. But what I know from my own life is that experiences of extreme states often called “anxiety” and “depression” exist and the extremes are not akin to ordinary states that everyone experiences. Unfortunately, because the same words are used, words can get in the way in such conversations.

      Sometimes when people talk about, or even just mention these extreme states, others who have experienced lesser or ordinary forms seem to assume that the extremes are the same or maybe a little more severe than the ordinary and can unknowingly belittle how extreme and disabling these states can be and the suffering they cause. What worried me about this conversation about pain was that there seemed to be a degree of assumption that the pain discussed was of the managable sort – not quite day to day pain, but not much worse. And that severe pain would always lessen over time if nature was allowed to take its course.

      I’m not an expert, but some of the assumptions worried me, because I believe those who have talked about severe pain that doesn’t just reduce naturally as the writer has suggested. In my country, opiods are not prescribed as the writer has described happens in the US. From what he has described, it sounds like he would approve of how they are usually prescribed here. Yet we still have large numbers suffering severe and chronic pain. And it is terrible.

      I agree with you, Melothrein. It is dangerous to make assumptions and take knee-jerk actions as a result. it could easily cost ives. People and experiences are not the same.

    • Thank you Melothrien – there are too many people who get no relief from pain because of the abuse of others. In Australia, there have been very few opioid deaths, but the MSM is reporting “opioid crisis” and following lock-step with the CDC’s restrictive policy.

      I have friends who suffer, and who are treated as criminals for asking for help with their pain, have had their pain meds cut in half, and one by 75% (with CRPS, a “suicide disease” because the pain is so awful), and she’s just supposed to knuckle down and face the fact that she won’t be able to walk or perform the simplest tasks of daily existence.

      Compared to them, my chronic pain condition is simple – but I, too, am grateful for the relief that an intermittent opiate provides.

      You wrote: “I do agree with you, however, that CPS and Fibromyalgia were invented…to justify the doctors not being able to find an answer. They’ve done it to me out of laziness. ”

      I believe that this is an invented illness – not because they aren’t finding the answers and are lazy – but because it’s iatrogenically induced. Most of the people I know with ME/CFS have been on psych drugs. And that doesn’t count the other madnesses – like statins, fluoridated water (one dose fits all), glyphosate in the food (a hormonal disruptor).

      For doctors to look into these illnesses, they would have to admit that they’ve been doing it wrong. They’d have to take on Big Food and Big Pharma, and the government (fluoridation). It’s in what Australians call, “The Too Hard Basket.”

      Thank you for the articles, I will be sharing them with my friends.