“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” (George Santayana)
The Santayana passage with which this article begins is a compelling reminder of the enormous importance of history. We forget societal developments of the past to our peril. What this article particularly invites you to remember is psychiatric and psychiatrically driven eugenics. What makes the Santayana quote particularly tricky when it comes to the subject of this article is that while most people are at least somewhat aware that psychiatry played a role in the sterilization and murder of people deemed unfit to live or to breed, this is generally not even close to the full extent of it. Moreover, in part because the psychiatric industry covers its tracks well, most are unaware that there were a great many more forms of psychiatric eugenics. Similarly, most are oblivious to the fact that psychiatric eugenics initiatives continued to exist—and beyond that, to flourish—long after the end of what is normally thought of as “the eugenics era” (roughly, late nineteen century to 1945).
The upshot? Sadly, in critical ways we are not learning from history what we direly need to learn. And we are now facing an upsurge in twenty-first century psychiatric eugenics, strangely unaware of what we are encountering—and as such, ill-equipped to counter it or even to know that we should be countering. Such is the reason for this blog.
In this article, I will be outlining major developments in the eugenic era, covering not only paradigmatic aspects of eugenics but also what tends currently not to be recognized as eugenic. I will proceed to what is likewise not well known—the enormous surge in psychiatric eugenics just following the second world war. From there, I will zero in on the massive and yet all-too-invisible psychiatric eugenic measures that we now face. And I will end by offering a few suggestions of what we might do about the situation.
To begin with the early days, with the definitional, and with the paradigmatic: As far back as the late nineteenth century, psychiatrists among others began adopting a theoretic position known as Social Darwinism—the belief that human groups were subject to the same Darwinian evolutionary principles as animals and plants; moreover, that the social or cultural was inherently biological and so was governed by the same biological laws. While there were other directions as well, Social Darwinists—and yes, they were at the center of the eugenics movement—were particularly concerned with the improvement of their stock. Besides wanting to “perfect” their stock, they were hell-bent on doing whatever was deemed necessary to prevent their stock from going backward in evolution, which they saw both as a real possibility and their number one priority.
Social Darwinism quickly came to be considered the epitome of good science—something to be furthered at all costs. By 1914, so accepted had this new “science” become that as Whitaker writes, in the US alone, “44 colleges had introduced eugenics into the curriculum” (Whitaker, 2002, p. 49).1
Who were the Social Darwinists? The average citizen. Legal theorists. Businessmen, with major players like the Carnegie Foundation and Rockefeller Foundation funding both eugenics conferences and eugenics research. Academics. Scientists of all types, though none more so than members of the psychiatric profession.
An example of a very early psychiatric Social Darwinist was nineteenth century psychiatrist Dr. Henry Maudsley. Maudsley was largely responsible for championing and achieving a professional consensus around the concept of hereditary madness. What he succeeded in convincing his colleagues and the world of is that the brain was the site from which lunacy came and that lunacy was hereditary. Correspondingly, he advised men to inspect prospective wives scrupulously for any physical signs that might indicate degeneration of the stock (for more details, see Burstow, 2015, Chapters 2 and 3).2
A huge percentage of the work of the Social Darwinists was aimed at protecting the average citizen and society at large from the dangers allegedly presented by people seen as having inferior genes. The point, as they saw it, was that their species or their race could evolve as it should or go backward in evolution depending on whether or not people of good stock guarded that stock against the contamination that could come from co-mingling with “undesirables” or even allowing the “undesirables” to procreate. The “undesirables” whose genes were seen as needing to be guarded against were those of specific “races” (e.g., Jews, Blacks, and Roma), anything not “Aryan,” the “mentally ill,” the “feeble-minded,” the disabled generally, and the “criminal element.” It goes without saying that to a person, Social Darwinists were racist, ableist, and classist in the extreme. Correspondingly, while they saw themselves as progressive and as following the dictates of modern science, what they were wrapping themselves in was a combination of hatred and pseudo-science for there was not a shred of credible evidence supporting their position.
Now right from the get-go, psychiatrists were utterly instrumental in spreading eugenic beliefs and implementing eugenics programs. Indeed, it was a psychiatrist, together with a legal theorist, who authored the single most seminal work underpinning the Holocaust in Nazi Germany: Die Friegabe der Vernichtung lebensunwerten lebens (translation: “The permission to destroy life unworthy of life,” Binding and Hoche, 1920).3 Correspondingly, psychiatrists actively championed the idea that “imbeciles” and people with mental challenges were an undue hardship on society.
A pivotal direction taken by eugenicists of this ilk included passing laws authorizing the sterilization of so-called “inferior stock” so as to stop them from reproducing. Sterilization programs abounded throughout the world, with the sterilization of the so-called mentally ill particularly emphasized. Other measures included passing laws prohibiting sexual relations between specific races. And then there were measures encouraging the procreation of citizens of “good stock” (known as “positive eugenics”).
The most horrific of the eugenic measures, of course, was the murder of the “undesirables”—something advocated by eugenicists by the beginning of the twentieth century. Society, it was argued, should not have to bear the burden having these people in their midst.
To be clear, Germany was hardly the only state that considered murdering the people deemed “useless eaters” or “incurables.” Several states, for example, passed laws making it legal to end the life of people seen as mentally challenged, including Indiana in the USA (for details, see Proctor, 1988, Lifton, 1986 and Lapon, 1986).4 5 6Lapon, L. (1986). Mass murderers in white coats. Psychiatric genocide in Nazi Germany and the United States. Psychiatric Genocide Research Institute. It was Nazi Germany, however, that initiated programs involving the systematic annihilation of whole groups.
Who did the Nazis systematically annihilate? Jews, Roma, the so-called “mentally ill” including those seen as “imbeciles,” queer people, and others deemed “degenerate.” And tellingly, who was the very first group to start being systematically annihilated? The disabled, including the “mentally ill.” And what is every bit as telling, who was front and center and indeed singularly instrumental in bringing about the mass murder? None other than psychiatrists.
To begin by zeroing in on the murder of the “mental patients,” besides advocating for it, psychiatrists actually directly murdered their own patients, paving the way for the subsequent murder of Jews. Moreover, psychiatrists were so committed to the job of murder that they continued murdering their own “mental patients” long after the Fuhrer order that permitted such atrocities was rescinded. In fact, hard though it may be to fathom this, they killed considerably more “patients” after it was no longer legal to do so than they had killed earlier (for details, see Proctor, 1988).
Psychiatrists likewise advocated for the murder of the other groups, providing bogus rationales for it. Moreover, going along with the proposition that what they were doing was medical, which included calling murder “treatment” and wearing white coats, they presided over mandatory “selections” to which Jews in particular were subjected; in each case, making the decision to “treat” or “not treat.” To be clear, though the examination in each case lasted seconds only, “selections” were observational/evaluation processes by which it was decided when “treatment” was in order. What is even more significant, it was not the “patient” but the Volk that was treated, with treatment involving nothing less than eradicating “the patient.” Consider in this regard, the following explanation:
“Of course, I am a doctor,” explained one of the medical people, by way of justification, “and as a doctor … out of respect for life, I would remove a gangrenous appendage from a diseased body. The Jew is the gangrenous appendage on the body of mankind (quoted from Lifton, 1986, p. 16).
That said, without question the Holocaust was the most horrific of the developments during the eugenics era. And for very good reason, the fact of it happening has solidly lodged itself in our collective memory. Nonetheless, the role of psychiatry in the Holocaust is typically minimized when in reality, it was absolutely pivotal. What is more important still: what I have outlined here is not even close to the totality of what was done under the name of psychiatric eugenics during this era. Other types of psychiatric eugenics initiatives which were widespread during this period include research into “schizophrenia”—a diagnosis that largely came into its own during this era (particularly in Nazi Germany), despite the utter lack of evidence that what they were calling schizophrenia had any medical basis. Correspondingly, there were several other psychiatric “treatments” both introduced and spearheaded during the eugenics era, likewise on the basis of no credible evidence—treatments, that is, that were consider eugenic although a) they were not tied to gene theory, and b) for the most part, they involved “treatment” of individuals. Key examples of these are lobotomies and the various shock therapies, including electroshock (invented in fascist Italy)—all of which, not coincidentally, went under the all-too-suggestive name “brain-damaging therapeutics” (for details, see Burstow, 2015).
To be clear, there is no question but that the research and experimental work identified above were considered part and parcel of eugenics. In fact, most of it qualified for the special funds made available for eugenics research by the business world (for details, see Whitaker, 2002). How so, you may be wondering, when most of them had nothing to do with genes and most were focused on individuals?
To understand the connection, it might be helpful to touch base with what theorist Nathaniel Comfort (2012) calls the “eugenics impulse.”7 The eugenics impulse, as identified by Comfort, is the impulse to render the human being perfect. Science is used for this (though we might better call it pseudo-science) and violence is acceptable—all in the name of human improvement. To spell out the connection here, just as killing the Jews was seen as rendering the Volk perfect, lobotomy was seen as rendering the defective human being perfect. By the same token, so was subjecting the human being to any one of the various shock or convulsive therapies, all of which, significantly, came into being during this period. In the process, individual rights, respect for difference, an understanding of what it actually means to be a human being and decency itself went “out the window.”
To give you a sense of the violence not only involved but downright extolled, I would turn as an example to an account of two of the convulsive therapies given by Ladislaus von Meduna—the inventor of cardizol convulsive therapy: “We act with both methods as with dynamite endeavoring to blow asunder the pathological sequences and restore the diseased organism to normal functioning,” states Meduna unapologetically. “We are undertaking a violent onslaught with either method we choose, but … nothing less than a violent assault to the organism is enough to break the chain of noxious processes that lead to schizophrenia” (Meduna, 1938, p. 49).8
Again, was there any credible proof that this obviously violent approach was beneficial? No, there was not.
A quick observation here: Whether or not there is such a thing as what Comfort is calling “a eugenics impulse,” I am not prepared to say. What is clear, however, is that we as a species do seem to have an instinct to “perfect”—something which can either function as an asset (say, in the “polishing” of a poem) or can lead to unspeakable atrocity. When this impulse is united with a bogus medicine, bogus disease processes, and when it is applied to human existence and to the social world—all of which is the case with psychiatry—unlike with “perfecting” a poem, the result cannot be anything other than horrific. Hence the horror that is eugenics. And hence the horror that is psychiatry.
Now the eugenic era more or less came to a close by the end of the second world war. Correspondingly, come the Nuremburg trials, people were so horrified by the atrocities that were part and parcel of the Holocaust that eugenics quickly fell into disrepute. The point is, however, that psychiatry was “let off the hook” with respect to the pivotal role that it played. What is even more significant (and what is not unrelated) is that only the most dramatic of the eugenic measures fell into disrepute. While the word “eugenics” was no longer used, for eugenics was now seen as verboten, lobotomy, the shock therapies, and research into schizophrenia continued on unabated with almost no one noticing that this too was eugenics. Eugenics, in other words, continued, although officially, the eugenics era was over.
With the 50s came two other major developments of a eugenics nature that it is important to touch on. By far, the most important of these is the widespread proliferation and use of psychiatric drugs—something which, like electroshock, is a violent assault on the brain. In this regard, please note, by way of example, that use of the very first class of major drugs—the antipsychotics or “neuroleptics” (which tellingly, translates as “seize the nerves”)—was originally referred to as a “chemical lobotomy” by its inventor, who was only too well aware of what it was doing to the brain. What is also apropos here is that while the various psychiatric drugs are predicated on theories of chemical imbalances, these theories not only are unsupported by evidence but over time have been thoroughly contradicted by evidence (see Burstow, 2015). In other words, utterly accepted though these drugs have become, despite the official line on them, it is hardly a stretch calling the proliferation of the psychiatric drugs a new and modern day eugenics push—arguably, the biggest push of them all.
That said, I cannot leave the post-war period without commenting on the work of psychiatrist Dr. Ewen Cameron at the Allan Memorial Institute (AMI) in Montreal, Canada.
Albeit a prestigious psychiatrist who was at various times head of the Canadian Psychiatric Association, head of the American Psychiatric Association, and head of the World Psychiatric Institution—moreover, a respected professional ethicist who sat on the Nuremberg medical tribunal—the truth is that Cameron was profoundly influenced by eugenics. While not seeing Jews as a problem, significantly, Cameron very much saw the German people as a threat to humanity, moreover he saw the threat in question as genetically based. Correspondingly, he made this explicit in a book he penned (Cameron, 1948) wherein he explained “the problem” and suggested “solutions.”9
What is far more important still, at the Allan Memorial throughout the 1950s and up until the mid 1960s, Cameron introduced and spearheaded an extensive and highly damaging regimen for people seen as “mentally ill”—one so extreme that most psychiatric eugenics measures pale by comparison. In stage one, known as “depatterning,” he subjected his patients to a combination of sleep therapy, sensory deprivation, LSD, and ECT several times daily with the stated intent to wipe the mind clean. In stage two, in what was called “psychic driving,” while the patient slept, he implanted new thoughts into their heads, via a tape which played over and over again and which contained concrete messages such as “you are a bad mother; you are a bad wife” (and yes, the sexism was that explicit). Needless to say, people were invariably injured for life by this so-called state-of-the art and progressive “treatment” (for details, see Burstow, 2015).
Now the world eventually learned of what happened at the AMI, this as a result of CIA funding for Cameron’s research being revealed. And when this happened, the public was duly flabbergasted, which in essence opened the door to lawsuits and settlements. Unfortunately, however, people assumed that the Allan Memorial experiments were primarily connected with the cold war and the aspirations of the military. To this day, that, indeed, is the dominant discourse when it comes to the AMI. What belies this assumption and this discourse, however, is that the military were minor players; the vast majority of the funding for Cameron’s research over the years came from Health and Welfare Canada (see Burstow, 2015, Chapter Three, also Weitz, 1986: “A Psychiatric Holocaust”).
The point here, and it needs to be understood, is that the AMI atrocity was not an offshoot of the cold war—not something initiated by the military, not something that happened because the military had a vested interest in brainwashing experiments. What unfolded, rather, was nothing less than a blatant continuation of psychiatric eugenics. Moreover, it was far from hidden. Cameron wrote and published about his theories and experiments extensively and it was on the basis of these publications that Health and Welfare Canada kept awarding Cameron grant after grant to continue his research. Nor was Cameron’s work simply an outlier, for it was connected with other psy initiatives in Canada. In other words, what we have here once again is an inherently psychiatric eugenics initiative, applauded by the “mental health” industry and on a continuum with other experiments being conducted, with psychiatry once again “let off the hook” when it started to be looked upon unfavorably.
Fast forward several decades.
In the period that followed, bogus medical theories continued to proliferate. Bogus diagnoses became standardized in manuals such as the DSM—all of this clearly in line with eugenics principles. Eugenics directions and priorities can likewise be seen at work in the differences between how people from different groupings are treated. Note in this regard the widespread proliferation of psychiatric drugs on Indigenous reserves (see Burstow, 2019).10 Note also, by way of example, the various anti-violence initiatives in the US—all of it transparently targeting people of color (see Burstow, 2015).
Which, willy-nilly, brings us to current times.
I have already provided some clarification on where I am suggesting psychiatric eugenics exists today. To provide a more substantial, albeit incomplete list, each of the following may be seen as a current psychiatric eugenics initiative and/or a tell-tale signs of psychiatric eugenics:
- the emphasis on schizophrenia
- every single one of the diagnoses in the DSM and in related manuals
- the invention of imaginary diseases and imaginary causes for them
- every single use of medical accoutrements for what is transparently not medical—whether it be the employment of medical-sounding diagnoses, the wearing of “white coats” or doctors’ uninforms, the very fact that what is happening is lodged in a facility called a “hospital”
- the blatant targeting of Blacks as schizophrenic
- the singling out of Blacks for lobotomies
- the disproportionate drugging of Blacks and other people of color
- the alarming inroads that psychiatric drugs have made into Indigenous communities
- the vast production of “fudged” research fraudulently claiming to establish chemical imbalances for alleged “mental illnesses”
- the continuing research on gene abnormalities as the cause of some “mental illness” or other
- the existence of laws that authorize doctors to isolate and to incarcerate people who have committed no crime and have no communicable disease
- the very use of the concept of “mental illness”
- the belief in hereditary madness and the ongoing activation of that belief (e.g., phrases like “runs in the family” that are typically sprinkled liberally throughout case files)
- the return of lobotomies
- the constant rise in the use of electroshock
- the very existence of electroshock
- the massive and ever more extensive drugging of the population
- the pretense that psychiatric drugs are tailored to address specific illnesses
- the use of restraints and of sensory deprivation
- “heroic” measures generally
- the ever-increasing growth in the number of official psychiatric diagnoses and in the numbers of people saddled with these diagnoses
- the massive and unparalleled attack on children.
As you can see, some of these are blatantly racist in nature, whereas others are not. Some, though not others, transparently smack of Social Darwinism. What they all have in common is that in all cases the social and the cultural is hopelessly confused with the biological; they are all based on unsubstantiated scientific claims; all are ultimately violent in nature; and all have perfection as a goal—for the most part the “perfection” of the individual. What stands out about some of them, additionally, is that they take the psychiatric eugenics threat to a whole new level.
What makes the rampant growth in the number of and the use of psychiatric diagnoses a particularly dire eugenic threat is that so many people are affected that what we are essentially seeing is tantamount to a redefinition of what it means to be human, with more or less everyone slated for correction. In other words, the threat is no longer just to the person. It is, on a very real level, to the species. This could spell disaster and as such, is highly worrisome. For similar reasons, equally worrisome is the attack on children.
Once upon a time, we accepted that children were different than adults and we saw this difference as both unproblematic and necessary. We expected children, for example, to rebel. We expected them to squirm, to daydream, and to have a comparatively short attention span. Now, however, if they rebel, they may be diagnosed with and “treated” for “oppositional defiant disorder.” And now if their attention wavers, they stand a very strong chance of being labelled ADHD and placed on brain-injuring stimulants (for an article which not only spells out the violence and damage involved but which also demonstrates that the damage is precisely what is called “improvement,” see “Psychiatric Drugging of Children and Youth as a Form of Child Abuse: Not a Radical Proposition”). What is every bit as important as the fact of the damage and violence per se, I would add that once on these drugs, it is no longer possible, for example, for the child’s mind to wander—for their brain, as it were, is in a straitjacket.
What exactly has happened here?
Let me suggest that psychiatry, albeit without anyone in the psychiatric profession being explicit about it or even necessarily being aware of what they are doing, has for all intents and purposes redefined human childhood itself as a disease. To put this another way, psychiatry is “perfecting” the human race precisely by eradicating childhood. And yes, that is eugenic. And yes, it is a “perfection” that we as a society and a species can ill afford.
Creepy though the general direction is, I would just note in passing, what is happening starts looking a whole lot creepier when you factor in legislation of the ilk passed in the US recently. As Tenney showed in her article “Warning: A Psychiatric tsuNAMI is Upon U.S.,” while not in effect yet, recently passed US legislation mandates psychiatric assessment for all children of school age. At this point, does not childhood as we know it start looking like it is in danger of becoming a phenomenon of the past? Correspondingly, while there are clearly profound differences between what is happening here and what happened to the Jews under the Nazis, as a Jew who is an authority on the Holocaust, permit me to point out that once again psychiatrists are slated to be performing mandatory evaluations of a huge proportion of the population just as happened with “Selection” during the Holocaust. Speaking of history repeating itself!
Which bring me to the question: What can we do about any of this?
A detailed answer to that question is beyond the scope of this article. To provide a few suggestions, though, a good beginning is educating people on the history of eugenics, outlining its various facets, while placing particular emphasis on psychiatric eugenics—on all those aspects of eugenics that we long ago stopped recognizing as eugenic.
Individual communities that are especially under attack might also consider starting to mobilize from within their communities. What if Indigenous communities, for instance, started objecting to the eugenic nature of current mainstream approaches to Indigenous “suicide” and began insisting that money now being used for this instead be reallocated directly to their communities? (For a strong antipsychiatry and anti-eugenics take on Indigenous “suicide” by a stellar Indigenous scholar, see Chrisjohn and MacKay, 2017).11
Correspondingly, what if all communities who been substantially invaded by psychiatric eugenics began demanding public apologies for the injury thereby done to them?
Given the massive assault on children and childhood and the imminent danger that it poses, it goes without saying that it is critical to help the general public recognize this specific assault as both eugenic in nature and as the enormous threat that it is. Correspondingly: strategically, we would do well to devote energy to mobilizing parents to stand up for their children and for childhood. Parents, note, are credible to the average member of society in the way that professionals are not, and as such, if helped to become savvy activists, parents could become key players in the struggle ahead.
Before ending, to touch briefly on a question that I know will be on some readers’ minds: Am I suggesting that we should be restricting ourselves to addressing the connection between psychiatry and eugenics? No. As an antipsychiatry theorist and activist, I am committed to the total abolition of this bogus “medical” discipline, irrespective of whether or not a connection with eugenics can be demonstrated with regard to any specific aspect. That said, I see focusing on eugenics as giving us an important new toe-hold with the public. Indeed, a eugenics perspective could help the public do an about-turn. Moreover, it could waken the populace to how very critical the current situation is.
What is more fundamental still, with the eugenics connection being as revealing a window as any onto psychiatry, it could help the average person cut through the professional rhetoric and begin to see psychiatry for what it truly is.
In ending, two final questions:
Given the enormity of the current threat, as activists, is it not time for us to be doubling our efforts to put a stop to psychiatric intrusion, using every means at our disposal? And with the historic and current eugenics record only too clear, as everyday members of society, is it not time that individually and collectively, we stopped “letting psychiatry off the hook”—before we have still more to regret?
- Whitaker, R. (2002). Mad in America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine, and the Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill. New York: Perseus Books. ↩
- Burstow, B. (2015). Psychiatry and the business of madness. New York: Palgrave. ↩
- Binding, K. and Hoche, A. (1920). Die Friegabe der Vernichtung lebensunwerten lebens. Leipzig: F. Meiner. ↩
- Proctor, R. (1988). Racial hygiene: Medicine under the Nazis. Harvard: Harvard University Press. ↩
- Lifton, R. (1986). The Nazi doctors. New York: HarperCollins. ↩
- Comfort, N. (2012). The science of human perfection. New Haven: Yale University Press. ↩
- Meduna, L. (1938). General discussions of cardizol therapy, American Journal of Psychiatry, 94, supplement, 41-50. ↩
- Cameron, E. (1948). Life is for living. New York: Macmillan. ↩
- Burstow, B. (2019). The revolt against psychiatry. New York: Palgrave ↩
- Chrisjohn, R. and MacKay, S. (2017). Dying to please you: Indigenous suicide in contemporary Canada. Penticton: Theyton. ↩
Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.
The basic principle of eugenics is that mutations are random. Exactly the same approach we have in psychiatry. People don’t even think that *random* may not exist. Randomization is like Santa Claus or a ghosts. So where does such confidence come from, that mutations are random and psychiatry should control this process? It’s not a fact at all, it’s just the opposite of religion, and definitely sounds extreme in modern world.
Yes, it is religion. We live in society which learn about their psychology form people who hate it, form theologians in scientific disguise.
That is why I write here about James Hillman books. They are extremely important. Because psyche is not a psychiatric or scientific slave. Psyche is the owner of every kind of perception, of our little ego. Monotheistic religion belongs to monotheistic god. Psyche has nothing in common with monotheistic religion.But people sometimes confuse apollonian ego with Christian spirit.
Apollonian ego (rationalism, shallowness, unity) is also not a ruler of the psychological reality. Hades is. And Hades was condemned by christianity. Politheistic nature of our psyche was condemned by religious people. By spiritual fundamentalists.
We are talking about metaphors.
Our science is based on spiritual assumptions. Because spirit is shallow and easy. Psyche is complex, sometimes ruthless and demanding.We do not need psychiatrists and their fixation on spirituality or on apollonian ego hegemony. We need wisdom and courage.
I see mentally ill people as psychological titans, and what they are doing is psychological work. Apollonian ego perception is just too stupid and too simple to be a ruler of the psyche. We are talking about psychological reality, death. For monotheistic people, psyche is the main enemy, evil or hell.
And this is a disaster.
James Hillman “Re -Visioning psychology” and “Suicide and the soul”.
That’s a good point
Psychiatry is nothing more than a replacement or partnership with religion. I think I will lump other forms and titles of ‘helpers’ in that basket of “I can help you be better” also.
What these eugenicists don’t know or don’t want you to know are the plusses of “schizophrenia” and being same. You’re less likely to have allergies, you have far greater resistance to viruses, are less likely to succumb to wound shock and (most important in the pro-pollution Trump era) you’re far less likely to get cancer than “straight people”- of Hoffer’s 5000 “schizophrenic” patients, 10 had or eventually had cancer (mentioned in his and Osmond’s book, How to Live with Schizophrenia). The first-order relatives of these genetically “inferior” folks also get the same benefits of this allegedly inferior genetic heritage (should we exterminate them, too (?)- maybe so, because they’re smarter than average).
Not anymore I am sure due to the impact of the toxic medications.
Bonnie, your article well done and further illustrates some of things I say in my upcoming book, Life After Lithium. I’d like to link to this article in my book, if that’s alright. I already have Psych and the Business of Madness linked my appendix. Your article goes into more depth and by all means supports the cause. The historical context is an essential part that I often miss out on in my own writing. It’s just that I can’t cover everything….
Somehow, intergenerational trauma fits into this picture as well. Or at least I see it in my own story, as a Jew, and as a woman.
No problem, Julie
They want to control everything and they do not need wisdom to do it. All they need is power. Psychiatry is fearsome.
Psychiatric perception does not see any signs of beauty in psyche.So psychological awareness today is also ugly, because it is created by ugly eye of monotheistic man.And that man is a enemy of beauty, imagination and so on.
James Hillman – “Kinds of Power”-
And to boot, every human is now a shrink, using the latest catchword. We are a bunch of monkeys observing each other. I hope one day people in general realize that. I have observed mental helpers who cannot look people in the eye. It’s scary.
“what we are essentially seeing is tantamount to a redefinition of what it means to be human, with more or less everyone slated for correction. In other words, the threat is no longer just to the person. It is, on a very real level, to the species. This could spell disaster and as such, is highly worrisome. For similar reasons, equally worrisome is the attack on children.”
Not to dismiss the absolutely appalling psychiatric/psychological/social worker/CPS worker/therapist – in other words, all DSM believers – historic, and continuing, assault on indigenous people and people of color, since that history is grotesque.
I agree with you, it is all people now, who our “mental health” workers target. A little bit about the psychiatrically integrated CPS system, and it’s intentional destruction of American families.
And we are witnessing the ongoing, holocaust level, psychiatric drug induced murders of half a million elderly annually. And God knows how many younger people.
And make no mistake, our psychiatrists believe that American families, with more than one Phi Beta Kappa member as well as Olympic back up and Olympic athletes have “bad genetics,” thus must be murdered. Oh, but zero “genetic” testing was ever done. My point is when even the most intellectually and physically gifted American families are defamed as having “bad genetics” by the psychiatrists, that means our eugenic deluded psychiatrists want to murder all Americans.
But, of course, such incompetent psychiatrists are highly delusional people who get their misinformation about such families, from “cocaine dealing,” child murdering, child rapists, according to medical records. And the primary actual function, for over a century, of our “mental health” workers has been covering up child abuse, largely for the religions.
Our school social workers target the well behaved children, and attempt to get their grubby little hands on them, because they get 100% on their state standardized tests. Murder the best and brightest in America, is the goal of our insane school social workers and psychologists. Because the “mental health” workers’ goal in life is to maintain the status quo for the never ending war mongering and profiteering, fiscally irresponsible, bailout needing, “banks steal $trillions in houses” globalist banksters, who’ve made a mockery of our monetary system.
Today’s “mental health” workers want to defame, drug, and attempt to murder everyone in the United States, to maintain a “status quo” that truly is satanic.
“To provide a more substantial, albeit incomplete list, each of the following may be seen as a current psychiatric eugenics initiative and/or a tell-tale signs of psychiatric eugenics:
“the emphasis on schizophrenia” Not only is “bipolar” an iatrogenic illness that can be created with the ADHD drugs and antidepressants, as Whitaker pointed out. But even “the sacred symbol of psychiatry,” is an iatrogenic illness that can be created with the “schizophrenia treatments,” the antipsychotic/neuroleptics. The negative symptoms are created via NIDS, and the positive symptoms are created via anticholinergic toxidrome.
“And with the historic and current eugenics record only too clear, as everyday members of society, is it not time that individually and collectively, we stopped ‘letting psychiatry off the hook’—before we have still more to regret?”
The entire industry likely belongs in jail for being child abuse cover uppers, given the huge percentages of child abuse survivors they’ve misdiagnosed, by DSM design.
And since the two “most serious” DSM disorders are iatrogenic illnesses that can be created with the psychiatric drugs, and all doctors are taught in med school about NIDS and anticholinergic toxidrome. So we know the entire psychiatric industry is based upon intentional scientific fraud. I’d say most psychiatrists indeed do belong in jail, for murdering millions, and attempting to murder millions more.
And all due to their worship of a now, almost worthless, paper Federal Reserve note. “For the love of money is the root of all evil …” Oh, and I guess the psychiatrists also have an insecurity based desire to be seen as “real doctors.” But you aren’t “real doctors,” when none of your DSM “disorders” are real “genetic” diseases. And NONE of the DSM disorders are, not even “schizophrenia.”
In the words of Allen Frances, “It’s bullshit.”
Indeed, it is. Thanks for you comments.
Child Protective Services and the Juvenile Dependency Court have an extremely difficult job to do. By law they are required to investigate every credible complaint. The basic investigation is just an unannounced knock and talk. If that goes off and there are no other complaints and they don’t hear or see anything of concern then that is the end of the matter.
If CPS wants to do more than that, it will always depend on the decision of a Judge.
But as it stands, huge numbers of complaints get no response. They just don’t have the resources, and so they have to prioritize complaints, based on what they think they might find. So in some counties it is in the hundreds of thousands per year, the number of cases which get zero action.
This book is 20 years old now, but very well written and showing the types of things they have to deal with. I feel that it is a good now as then.
It is based entirely on real cases and from the court of the nationally renowned judge Leonard Edwards. And he is a strong believer in the value of CASA volunteers, because that enables them to remove far less children.
That this is the proper function and duty of government has been found to be so in the US Constitution, and by the responsible courts.
I remember one County DA explaining on TV news during one of our many boom caused busts, that during the down economy the child abuse cases had gotten worse, and so they were also applying torture charges.
Having sat through one child molestation trial, I saw first hand that there are attorney’s who specialize in making child protection laws unenforceable. And just as is done with adult rape trials, they try to turn it back on the victims. This guy had obviously studied family conflicts and figured out how to turn it back on the child. The guy was the worst sort of a scum bag.
Most of the pressure against child protection seems to come from the Religious Right. But I am convinced that it is also because the newspapers don’t cover the cases. I think this is for the sake of the victims, but the result is that the public does not understand what is going on. The public really has no idea.
300 Parricides per year for the US, most all resulting from extreme child abuse.
I got to shake the hand of Paul Mones when he was in town pro-bono.
And this goes way back, The US being one of the last large economy nations to sign the UN Convention on Rights of the Child. Extreme abuse has always been there, and the first child protection case had to use newly enacted US laws to prevent cruelty to animals.
It seems that “The United States has signed the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), but is the only United Nations member state that is not a party to it.” So my understanding is our country still has huge problems in regards to the lack of rights for children.
I have no doubt CPS has “an extremely difficult job to do.” However, I do know that they do not “investigate every credible complaint.” For example, I know that when a mother has had medical evidence of the abuse of her child handed over, but the abuse occurred outside the home. CPS won’t investigate, because they can’t steal the children from that home, and that’s how CPS gets paid. That’s a big part of the problem with the CPS system, it’s financial incentive system ignores the reality that child abuse sometimes happens outside the home.
I actually had to scare the school, where some of the abuse likely occurred, into closing down myself. By letting the gossip that the medical evidence of the abuse had been handed over, get around, via a criminal gossipy, likely pedophile pastor. But innocent schools don’t choose to close forever, for no reason. I had known for certain the abuse had occurred at one of the school board members’ homes. But I wasn’t certain that school was allowing that school board member to abuse children in the school, until the school chose to close, out of fear of a lawsuit.
“Most of the pressure against child protection seems to come from the Religious Right.” I don’t think the problems with CPS are a left-right issue, I think the problems have to do with an improper financial incentive system, which encourages CPS to steal children from families, and doesn’t pay them for looking into child abuse that occurs outside the home.
And most of my knowledge of the CPS problems, other than from personal experience, comes from listening to youtube videos made by distraught parents, whose political affiliation I don’t even know, but many are likely democrats, who’ve had their children stolen from them. Although, I did also learn about the problems from Nancy Schaefer, who may have been “suicided” for discussing the problems with CPS. Apparently she was a republican.
But the financial incentives built into the CPS system are the problem, it really ought not be considered a left-right issue. It’s a bad system issue, but that’s not to say there are no good people, actually trying to help children, working within that bad system.
Yes, children have less protections of their rights than do those in many other industrialized nations. And tepid support for the UN Convention shows this. And this tepid support is primarily due to the influence of the Christian Right.
Other countries have even outlawed corporal punishment, and the state of Minnesota has outlawed corporal punishment. But in the rest of the US, it is the Christian Right which defends the use of corporal punishment.
CPS is required by federal law to investigate every credible complaint. But they can’t because federal law or no, they just don’t have the personnel. So they have no choice but to prioritize cases, based on the number of complaints and on what the complaints say, and then to allow some cases to fall thru the cracks, as newer complaints about more serious situations continue to come in.
The abuse of children which occurs outside of the home will usually be investigated by police. If you know of such abuse, dial 911 right now.
If you told me of such abuse, I would dial 911 right now, but probably I am not in your jurisdiction, so I would first have to find the phone number for your area’s police.
CPS is primarily for protecting children from their parents, as this is a much more sensitive issue. Presumably the parents would do their best to protect their children for outside abusers, as best they can.
CPS is a government agency, usually county or state. They don’t make profit. But they are tasked with removing children from abusive environments. No one else has this responsibility. And CPS does not do this on its own authority, except maybe for some very short term crisis situations, and where police are involved. But either way, there will be a court appearance the next day, and only on the authority of the court could they ever continue to hold onto a child.
“I actually had to scare the school, where some of the abuse likely occurred, into closing down myself. By letting the gossip that the medical evidence of the abuse had been handed over, get around, via a criminal gossipy, likely pedophile pastor.”
Well if you had knowledge of something abusive which was even suspected to be going on in a school, you should have dialed 911 at once. If you are a member of the public then you are not covered by mandatory reporting. But the people who run the school and work in it are. So if they fail to report on a suspected case of child abuse, then they will usually be guilty of both a State and a Federal Felony. If you have reason to believe that they are not complying with mandatory reporting, then you should again call 911. You might also call your county DA, your state AG, and federal DOJ.
Again, if you even have suspicion, you should report what you have heard, and where you have heard it from, to law enforcement. The kinds of things you are describing sound more like matters for police than for CPS.
If school staff has failed report, and this has allowed evidence to be destroyed, school property or anywhere else, than this is where they are really likely to get some straight time.
CPS looks into the most serious complaints. It is supposed to be all complaints, but they do not have the resources. So they have to prioritize cases.
People want CPS to uncover serious things, not just to remove children. And when they have more CASA volunteers to oversee children in the home and to be available if the child needs them, then they don’t have to remove as many children. Most children removed are allowed visitation and eventually returned.
The “Distraught Parents” are a right wing political force, mostly driven by the Christian Right, because they consider children to be property, because their theology of Original Sin says that children need to be broken. So to them, there is no such thing as child abuse, because the child is always the one in the wrong.
CPS investigates the cases which have the most serious complaints. They are supposed to investigate all cases, but they don’t have any where’s near the resources to do that.
Book shows the types of things they typically deal with. Real cases, only names and a few identifying details changed:
It is better to send CPS to a home, when it is just to be a knock and talk. Less disruptive than sending police.
If CPS is coming with the decision already made to remove a child, then that will have been by court authority.
If there is an emergency situation and CPS removes a child, then there will still be a court appearance within days. Keeping a child out of the home will always depend on the court’s decision, and at a contested hearing.
Remember, CPS and Law Enforcement cannot talk about their cases. Whereas the political right can talk ad nauseam to try and exonerate abusive parents, and to undermine the idea of child protection, and no one else with specific information can say anything.
Child Protection is the most threatening area of law that the Right has ever faced.
Judge Leonard Edwards
Improving Outcomes for Children in Child Protection Cases: Role of Child Advocate
Removed at request of poster.
My sister told me that a cps worker laughed and told her that “the mentally ill are easy pickings”. I lost my children for most of a year due to my former therapist’s frustration that I wasn’t “cured” of my depression. She called cps and told them about my past (not current) suicidal ideation. It didn’t help that i was having a bad reaction to a medication I was given off label to help with anxiety (panic attacks were severe). The children were taken to multiple doctors and no signs of abuse. I jumped through all the hoops to reunite our family, but we’re forever scarred by the experience.
I am sorry about what happened to you, Nita. What most of the other commentators on these blogs are ovelooking is the huge number of children removed because the parents are considered inadequate, when so very many times what is at the base of the parents being considering inadquate is either mentally or racism, or classism or some combination of the three. Absolutely we need direly to protect children from abusive parents, but to assume that no harm is done by these government agencies and that they are always just protectors when they remove children is to ignore a huge part of reality, and for the most part, a highly mentalist and racist part.
I can testify as an advocate for foster kids for 20 years that the system often does more harm than good. There are most definitely some situations that turn out much better for the kids or the families, but there are just as many where the kids continue to be abused, neglected, or forgotten, including being abused by the “mental health” system during their time in care. Most of our advocacy was done to prevent further harm by the system itself. And statistics most definitely show bias against black people, Native Americans, Latinx people and poor people, all across the country. Child abuse is awful, but foster care is not a great answer, either. We need to look at other ways to deal with the problem.
My condolences Nita.
This is why I would never advise an abused wife with kids to seek out psych “help.” A psych label will just make the courts award custody to the abusive dad.
Sites where abuse victims are urged to get “help” for “clinical depression/anxiety” when their sorrow and fear are justified and the abuser will be the one who benefits…these advisors mean well…but their foolishness hurts many. Makes me want to rip out my hair!
Nearly all the kids in foster care wind up on psych drugs PD. Read Anatomy of an Epidemic.
CPS puts kids in foster homes.
It is not a majority that go on psych drugs, but it is WAY more than the average for non-foster kids. Over half of teens in foster care are on psych drugs. Usually around 20% of all foster youth are on psych drugs, including even 1-2% of infants! Interestingly, though, kids placed in relative foster care have only slightly higher drug use rates than the general public, whereas non-family foster placements have 3-5 times higher rates of psych drug use.
Foster kids are most definitely at higher risk of being diagnosed and drugged than the average kid.
This is largely because the foster parents are given more money, if the children are drugged. So, again, there’s an improper financial incentive, that encourages the foster parents to drug the foster children. CPS is a bad system, financially set up to encourage stealing children from homes, and drugging children.
Rachel, kids are getting put on psych drugs. This should not be so, but it is. And the rate for kids in the Foster Care system is much higher.
These drugs should be eliminated.
But this does not mean that we have any less need for Child Protection and for the ability to remove children from families, both short and long term.
We should be building better foster care, so that the court can have a broader slate of realistic options, and so that foster care does not have to be the resource of last resort.
My own view is that we need adult communes, and that these should be the people who set up the foster care group homes. They can resemble an Israeli Kibbutz, rather then be run by people who are already socially and economically marginalized. They can be run by people who have freely opted for communal living, and so they do not see it as inferior to THE MIDDLE-CLASS FAMILY.
Real doctors heal. They don’t make a living lying about problems to patients to sell them mind altering drugs or perform random acts of violence on vital organs by pretending its surgery. (And slandering their patients on national TV.)
Real doctors heal, but it is completely wrong to turn survivorship into a healing project, because that means that there will be no redress. the healing concept is a trap.
And most middle-class child abuse does depend on doctors of one type or another.
First comment! (I feel like I’m on youtube….)….
Seriously, Bonnie, – what you’re describing here, PSYCHIATRIC EUGENICS, also neatly fits another definition.
*GENOCIDE*. That’s what I think we ALL need to be publicizing. That psychiatry, and the “mental illness industrial complex”, represents GENOCIDE for PROFIT.
Repeat: GENOCIDE for PROFIT….
The general public doesn’t know what “eugenics” is, but they DO know what GENOCIDE is.
But they have been LIED TO, and led to believe that psychiatry is “helping” people….
It is genocide indeed.
Awesome article Bonnie. I can’t believe that someone could write this just in the time since your last article, not unless you were already highly conversant in these matters.
Now you know that Social Dawinism was a doctrine of the late 19th Century. It got started in the UK, but it really came into its own though in the US.
And then even with the populist reactionary William Jennings Bryan, he objected so to Social Darwinism, and to Darwinism because, being Secretary of State, of the carnage he saw from WWI. I certainly am not a Creationist, but I can respect someone who was that deeply influenced by WWI carnage, and saw it as being related to a low regard for human life.
The kind of Social Darwinism which gets spouted today is a later development, more pseudo scientific. The idea runs something like, we have laws of evolution, and these favor the greatest. But then you have the laws of Democracy, and these substitute numbers, and so Democracy is counter evolutionary. This one speech was the key to street brawlers winning the support of the Business and Finance Sectors, Industry Club in Dusseldorf. This speech has been printed in books going way back. I only connect to this kind of a source because it is online.
And he talks about ~Bolshevism~ as some kind of moral and genetic degeneracy. He will still be talking like that Nov 1942 as Allied Troops are landing in North Africa. And then in Aug 1943, as Italians are throwing down their rifles and running and turning against their own Fascists, it’s still ~Bolshevism~ and the ~N-word~. And then in Paris in the weeks following June 6, 1944 the black shirt wearing Vichy Propagandist Philippe Henriot is screaming into radio that Liberation will not occur in his lifetime and talking about famine and starvation and using those same two words, ~Bolshevism~ and the ~N-word~.
And while Berliners might have been tolerant of homosexuality, and homosexuals had been quite welcomed in the Nazi Party, this did not mean that the rest of the population shared such views. Things changed once power was obtained. They blamed the Reichstag Fire on a homosexual communist and beheaded him. And then at the end of June 1934, Night of the Long Knives, when Rohm had expanded the SA to 8 million men and was clearly threating the Reich, his homosexuality was used as the reason to kill him.
All of the methods of isolating and stigmatizing, and the all of the pseudo science used to justify the extermination, were practiced and perfected on homosexuals and communists, before these were then applied to larger population segments.
They called people who did not conform to their pseudo science “Contragenics”. There was a continuum, the worst being homosexuals, but then also including unmarried people, childfree married couples, and married people with a small number of children. Only married people with a large number of children were exempt from this labeling.
Some years back there was talk that there could be a “gay gene”. I ask, and especially with all the amniocentesis, is that really a good way to go?
I doubt that any such gene ever will be located, things just don’t seem to work like that when it comes to human behavior. But even talking about it, does not seem good to me. Would LGBTQ activists want to advance the idea of ‘Neuro Logical Difference”, “Neuro Divergent”, or “Neuro Diversity”? I would hope not.
In my view, people want these kinds of biomedical explanations because they have already been so bullied and stigmatized that they feel that they need something, anything, to legitimate their own existence.
Ever since the dotcom boom in the 90’s, our official and popular politics has really been just Social Darwinism.
And then here, showing how it took the Eugenics Movement, the Mental Hygiene Movement, Universal Schooling, and a definite contribution from the Nazi Party, until you could have the concepts of Autism and Aspergers.
And also the ~works~ of Hans Asperger were unknown in the US, untranslated, until the mid 90’s. So people were not getting ~diagnosed~ with ~Aspergers~ in the US, or anywhere in the English speaking world, until the mid 90’s, and ~Autism~ was still thought of as something more disabling. So I think they were telling people that they had ~ADHD~ when they seemed to be somewhat insulated from the Herd.
And then with the rise of Neo-Liberalism, starting in the late 70’s with Margaret Thatcher, continuing with Ronald Reagan and with his right wing economists, and then made into a kind of social chic during the dotcom boom, you get a vast popularization of the ideas of Autism and Aspergers, and going to the concept totally unsupported by any evidence, of “neurological difference” and then “neurodiversity”. I am convinced that this is a huge mistake.
One of the biggest boosters for the ~New Economy~ and for this idea that Autism – Aspergers – Neurological Difference being a chic, was this Wired Magazine, showcasing the business movers and shakers, and also employing one Steve Silberman.
Sami Timimi and his coauthors are totally opposed to the idea of ~neurological difference~ and for any kind of a computer industry chic, and they say that the reason for the explosion in ~Autism~ assessments if simply the rise of Neo-Liberalism, Tony Blair, and the associated desire to dismantle the welfare state. Timimi calls the move to try and do ~Autism~ accessments, “Psychiatric Policing~ and a resurgence of the Eugenics Movement.
Bonnie, it looks to me like there is so much which we are likely to agree on.
Today the authorities want to keep the stigmatized groups in a condition of being pitiful. That way the Work Ethic can still be upheld and the stigmatized will not organize or become militant. You find this where it comes to just Poverty, as well as where it comes to Disability.
Yes, Pacific-Dawn, I have always been aware that we agree on a great deal, including that neither of us accept any psych diagnosis at all as legitimate. Our difference, as I see it, lies mainly in how we think of or treat neiighbouring movements who have position that we see as problematic.
Well I think people should not endorse or accept labels, especially when they are of Mental Hygiene and Eugenic origin. I think this gets to most basic issues of legitimacy, and so there can be zero compromise. It is a life and death issue.
And specifically when it comes to ~Autism-Aspergers~ more than anything, that has always seemed like just a case of parents who find their child to be an embarrassment.
And with all related matters, it is simply because the Middle-Class lives in Bad Faith, and the people who get it the worst then are the children.
We must draw a line of zero tolerance for parents who have children so that they can do this.
The hatred this Jayne Lytel has for her second son Leo, is intense.
And as far as Anti-Psychiatry, R.W.’s books say nothing to endorse Psychotherapy or Recovery. He makes his point against the drugs, and does so brilliantly. But he does not try to make Psychotherapy and Recovery into the alternatives.
On this forum though, it is dominated by people who promote Psychotherapy, Recovery, and Street Drugs, as the alterative to Psychiatry. This I cannot condone.
I agree agree with you that there is the unfortunate domination that you see,
In R.W.’s books he only talks about the horrors of these drugs, and he does a masterful job of showing how they crate the ~mental illness~ phenomenon. I am not aware of him saying anything which supports a therapy or recovery model.
Now usually people can work together without having to agree on everything. They just have to agree on some objectives, and then agree on some rules about what sorts of things cannot be endorsed.
I am fine to support efforts to end psychiatry, psych drugs, and forced procedures. Those are all worthwhile objectives.
But I cannot be associated with anything which presents Psychotherapy or Recovery as the solutions to life’s challenges. Likewise I cannot be associated with anything which promotes street drugs, and as a substitute to psych drugs. Both types of drug use are based on the same fallacy.
And then I cannot be involved with anything which presents an open ended commitment to non-violence as a way of life, like Mind Freedom did.
And I cannot be associated with anything which promotes the idea of Autism, Aspergers, neurological difference, or even neurodiversity in its most radical form. This still is an endorsement of the basic idea of Autism. And it is not redress, it is collaboration. In its most radical form it has no basis in objective reality. So really it is just aiding in the abuse which the Autism industry is, because it is not fighting it. The ways the Autism industry is attacking children is war. But with this radical neurodiversity movement, no perpetrators are being impacted.
But I do want us to move from debating to action. There just have to be some common understandings.
I am seeing this forum getting more and more anti-psychiatry. But the problems I have indicated are still here.
One of the things that really bugs me about this website is when I feel as though I have to be an apologist for healing. Not understanding why this would occur, and with such ferocity, in this venue. That feels terribly counter-productive and counter-intuitive to me, and I don’t get the logic of it toward any fruitful end. This feels like a double-bind to me, can’t move forward, it’s a feedback loop. Needs to be broken through and ascended, imo, for progress of any kind to occur.
Not recognizing healing for what it is, is not recognizing even the possibility of change. That’s the problem here, and I cannot see in any way, shape, or form, how these difference in perspectives and beliefs could ever reconcile. Were they to, I’d be learning something new, to which I’m always open, because otherwise, I just don’t see it at this point. It is a perfect split, kind of a shit-or-get-off-the pot moment, as it were. It’s all a choice, but eventually, one has to choose to go either one way or another, or they’ll split apart like a wishbone. You just can’t keep weilding a sword and heal at the same time. There is a time for everything, and healing is vital, ESPECIALLY when fighting the hard battles of life.
But to discount healing is to dismiss well-being and the totality of our humanity, both individual and collective. It’s neither practical nor effective, keeps one in pain and suffering mode, and in the end, only serves to sabotage one’s own efforts. It’s completely self-marginalizing, keeps things status quo. I know this from experience, and I think it stands to reason.
Doesn’t have to be this way, if we choose to integrate ALL of who we are, and not just the wounded fragments brought on by our life experiences. We are soooo much more than that, and we need to know this if we want to expect anything good to come from these efforts. That would be some serious change happening, in the moment!
That’s my 2 cents, fwiw.
I agree with you there Alex.
One should not pose healing and resistance as opposites, they are part of the same gestalt. People should never be guilt-tripped for fighting to end psychiatry, which much be eliminated if civilization is to progress.
Alex, I’ve been loving your comments lately. You’re getting right to the heart of these contradictions.
Kindredspirit, if you get a chance check out Alex’s article on Mad in Italy. (two of three parts are posted) He nails it.
Rosalee, thanks so much for posting these and KS and Rachel, I’m so glad this rings true to you, as well.
Oldhead, I’m not guilting anyone nor discouraging anyone from fighting, I did a lot of fighting myself, as part 3 of my article on Mad in Italy (to be posted soon) goes into a bit.
I was also doing tons of healing work simultaneously, because all that resistance takes its toll. I believe there should be a balance, that’s all I’m saying, just attempting to raise awareness a bit around the issue of maintaining personal well-being while fighting the good fight. There is a lot of growth and healing when done together. And I don’t think that’s terribly radical, either, it’s logical.
However, on this website, I, on the other, have been smeared for talking about healing and for that being part of my professional work in the world. I’ve been thrown guilt for deriving income from helping others, after years and years of struggling, and then all the training I did to learn and apply what I did. I think that’s bullshit, and I’m not going to hear any more garbage about how I’m “contribuing to abuse” by wanting to heal and desiring healing for anyone who desires it for themselves. I’ve done way more work for free than not, but some people can pay me and they do because they find my services to have value. I’ve never, ever turned anyone away for financial reasons, and would not ever consider doing so. I believe I am helping humanity and have been bringing change for a while, because I am an example of change and transformation. I help others in this regard and it improves their quality of life. What, exactly, would be the downside of this?
I was a victim of all kinds of abuse during my life, and I went very deep and to great lenghts to heal from the effects of this, change my inner landscape to stop repeating that pattern, and at the same time, as part of all that, I also fought the good fight, spoke truth to power, broke up systems, took consequences on the chin, moved on, etc. But the first precedes the rest of it, if you want to be effective. I help clients find their voice and power, and encourage them to use it, when they feel ready and courageous to do so. In the meantime, I help them to discover that courage. It’s up to them what they choose to do, I just help people clear out voices external to their own, so they can hear their own inner voice, guidance, and intution with clarity. That’s what psychiatry has cut us off from, I know this all too well. That’s the healing, and it is powerful.
Everyone needs healing right now, one way or another. Change will bring up our most shadowy stuff to address, otherwise, change will not occur. That’s why a lot of people resist change, because on some level, they know it means their stuff will come up yet again, all those programs we took on that no longer serve because they are false.
Many of us on here have an advantage, in that we’re accustomed to hanging out in the shadows, doesn’t scare us at this point, it’s a familiar. I guarantee this is not the case for mainstream types, middle class, etc. They are scared to death of shadow! If we can embrace our light as well as we embrace our shadow, then we are more powerful than the mainstream. But without that “light” part, we have no power. I’m sure of this.
But some of the rhetoric around here makes healing sound like a dirty word, and that’s what my post is about. I think it’s clear, true and neutral, so I’m not understanding where the “guilt” comes in, except as a projection.
Very well said, Alex!!!
Yes, Rosalee, I read and loved Alex’s article!
Alex, I agree completely. We need healing as well as organized resistance and these aren’t mutually exclusive.
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Thanks for validating the importance of healing, even in activism, Steve and Kindredspirit, and also KS for the kind words re the article I wrote, very much appreciated! So glad it spoke to you. Part 3 was posted a couple of days ago, brings it full circle–
I’m all for healing, but what does that look like? I can tell you that most people do not hold the knowledge of what is right for each individual. Possibly that one person you think needs healing, is doing it, the ‘healing’ at their own speed. I think we look at others as not functioning in the proper ways? It is just that looking at others in that light creates division often. It is when we separate the healed from unhealed, therein continually lies the problem. Shrinks do this. I’m fine with ‘healers’ who are aware that our existence might not be one that looks like what the healer imagines life to be like, or how the healer experiences/experienced his/her path, and where they are now. We are never “there”. We have until the end
Great comment, sam plover, I agree with every word of it. We’re all healing, and we heal within ourselves and also with each other, I believe. I heal as I teach, practice, and live my life. We are mirrored daily, one way or another and can follow that thread to more and more clarity and self-awareness. We need space, time, and permission to heal, grow, and manifest our lives.
“It is when we separate the healed from unhealed, therein continually lies the problem. Shrinks do this.”
Yes, that’s the problem, the illusion of separation, causes marginalization and all kinds of undue suffering. No one is immune from the craziness of the world. We all contribute to whatever the world is, and can equally contribute to its healing in order for change to occur.
Good article. Rousseau was one of the earliest purveyors of the false notion of human “perfectibility,” but there is seemingly no end to the litany of utopian schemes that have arisen from modern political philosophy. Following Rousseau, Marx attempted to transform philosophy itself: “The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it.” It is natural and necessary to focus on the path of eugenics through Nazi Germany, but if we really hope to learn from history we can’t ignore the role that Marxist ideologies had in the creation of the Russian Gulags. Neither can we ignore the work of the most articulate and courageous psychiatric abolitionist of the 20th century, namely Thomas Szasz. Of course, a single blog post can’t cover every important topic, but it is worth remembering that in addition to the fictitious disease of “schizophrenia,” the myth of “autism” also arose in the context of Nazi Germany and Austria. https://psychiatricsurvivors.wordpress.com/2018/09/02/the-myth-of-autism/
Marx taught ancient Greek Philosophy. I have always assumed that some of his thinking has to be coming from Plato’s Republic and this idealized nation state where “no one would know whom their parents were.”
In my view Plato never saw this as something which could be implemented. Ray Bradbury calls it the “first work of science fiction.”
In the 1848 Manifesto they do affirm that they want to abolish the family. But they never explain anything more about how this would be accomplished.
Marx’s ideas are mostly an inversion of what Hegel laid out, and Marx affirmed that his thinking is also dependent upon Ludwig Feuerbach, particularly in the criticism of religion and of the ideal of the Holy Family.
Rousseau’s ideas are mostly a reification of nature. Marx does not do this. He makes no references to anything being “natural”.
But you see Rousseauism in play anytime people start talking about “What is Natural” and reifying that, and especially today in the fascination people have with Pedagogy Manuals.
Foucault is the diametric opposite of Rousseau, and he has more than anyone I think, really thought it all through.
But Marx does start off, in the Manifesto, explaining that the French Revolution did not go far enough, because it left the Bourgeoisies in charge. He gives extremely insightful criticism of what the problems are with this. I think as valid today as it was then. But as far as what might take its place, he says precious little.
There are lots of things written since which give a much better treatment of the same issues than Marx and Engels were able to in 1848.
Reading now a book about Annie Besant who was a Labor Movement Leader and a “Fabian Socialist” in England in the 1880’s. She and most of her colleagues did not go for Marx. They wanted Ballot Box Socialism, and so they knew that their ideas had to be moderated.
They saw Marx as promising violence. I don’t think he says this, but he is encouraging people to dig in and hold out, and to be ready to continue the French Revolution, so I guess then that would eventually lead to violence.
In a country which has some history of electoral democracy, it seems unreasonable to assume that any group could hold power for very long, if not supported at the ballot box. But WWI took down 4 empires, so I can see how regime change would then result.
Besant seemed to eventually give up on Socialism in England, I think just because progress on even something like school lunches proved so difficult. So she became involved in the movement for India’s Independence, and in occult matters.
You probably don’t hear today’s rhetoric of the right. Being involved in other things, I do hear it, and it continues to shock me.
They do speak about Socialism, Communism, Homosexuality, Liberalism, Feminism, and Autism as though they are social hygiene disorders. And they describe immigrants and racial minorities and Muslims as a social menace and as inferiors. If they had some theory being fed to them, they would describe all of these things as being caused by genetics.
It seems to come from the online version of Right Wing Hate News.
Kind of like Fox, and kind of like that Steven Bannon and Breitbart News, and like some of the stuff in the Men’s Rights / MGTOW / PUA movements, but always much more extreme.
A big block of the population has its world view formed by this kind of stuff and nothing else.
And then there are the Ayn Rand followers, like Rep Paul Ryan.
And then there are the Christian Nationalists.
The biggest supporters of psychiatry are liberals, PD.
^^^ In large measure what you say is true. This is only one of the reasons which I do not go along with them, and have often openly opposed them, especially in our local Public Health Dept. I do my best to learn from Radical Leftists.
Such as whom? I don’t see any radical leftists opposing psychiatry, with very few exceptions. In fact I don’t see many true leftists around period. It was much different during the first incarnation of the movement.
Radical leftists in Germany right now actually do oppose psychiary. By contrast, in the US and Canada and in Englan, most unfortunately, are staunch supportrs of psychiatry.
A leftist on FB was complaining about America. One of his top complaints was not enough being spent on “mental health.”
I wish the government would confiscate the multi billions Big Pharma companies have made and give $500,000 apiece to everyone crippled by their psych drugs. If it bankrupted them so they could no longer hurt people, so much the better. Of course that ain’t gonna happen. 🙁
We don’t seem to have many Radical Leftists, certainly not in elected office. But they exist some places.
The left strongly supported the AP movement in the 70’s and regularly endorsed our events. Most modern day “leftists” are not leftists at all.
I needed leftists and when I contacted MANY, due to a specific problem, their loud voices online went mute. Coldest reception along with it. I was and remain very confused and seemingly am reading empty words.
You are absolutely right about that, Oldhead!
Its the Right though that is openly in favor of eugenics and a social hygiene view of the matter.
Had people running for office primarily on an involuntary drugging platform. They are not liberals.
Sorry that some of my earlier posts were unclear. Hitler and many of his supporters, and not just in Germany, talked about “Bolshevism” as a social hygiene menace, just like ~mental illness~ is talked about.
I get hit with some of today’s online Right Rhetoric, and they talk about ~Socialism~ as though it is a social hygiene menace.
And then just a few days ago, a Trump Supporter was talking with someone from El Salvador, about the importance of voting in America, “To make sure it stays like America and does not become like El Salvador”.
This Trump Supporter fails to understand that in the US we did have an advantage politically because of strong governmental support for the development of a middle-class, in our electoral democracy, and in the availability of free and low cost land. This worked well up to the Civil War. And then in the 20th Century we had the New Deal and progressive income tax.
In Latin America, most of these things were absent, and you had extreme colonial oppression, and a population divided into the very rich and the very poor.
Voting the way this Trump Supporter wants, will further accelerate the process of doing that to the United States.
But this Trump Supporter considers voting in a progressive way to be a social hygiene menace and to be that which must be wrong about Latin America.
Ironically, Bonnie, your resistance to psychiatry has been likened to eugenics by a grateful consumer who stirred up trouble because of your scholarship. I get so frustrated with battling mindsets that assume brain chemical imbalances are a PROVEN FACT and nothing I say or show convinces them.
I just want to rip my hair out at such willful ignorance. Why is reading an article from the APA journal or this resource or listening to me talk about Anatomy of an Epidemic too hard for my friends? Why this resistance to learning anything not approved by the boobtube? 🙁
I agree, Rachel777, it is highly ironic.
Removed for moderation.
Rachel, you probably have not heard the people on Recovery oriented forums who will no tolerate anyone saying anything against Psych Drugs, but they take that as uniformed and irrational prejudice against themselves. As they see it there should be on stigma on those currently on ~Psychiatric Medications~.
Well obviously our brains are a bunch of neurons and synapses and who knows what else. We know that magic mushrooms do things within our brains, they interrupt what is going on in there. What is hilarious is that we are told someone is not “balanced”, or that these red pills will help with that “imbalance”. Cute, we can eventually create a pill where we are all the same and no more need for shrinks or any other form of help. Problem is, no shrink will take those pills, because he wants his ego to remain. All other egos/personalities are meant to be balanced.
Thank you for your informative article. Every parent should read it. I can’t help but see a corollary with the cigarette and the opiod manufacturers (ie. drug pushers needed clients that are alive and consuming the products – if we can get the next generations hooked on the jingle – then great, we’ll have fatter wallets). Eugenics in an era of capitalism.
It’s a tough read, yet necessary. Thank you.
You are very welcome, Redcat.
Thanks Bonnie. I find it more of a mindset that is always a part of the culture in many global areas that waxes and wanes , rises and falls, but now like you I am so worried not only of its ascendency but of the children now and those to come. So many are now existing in no win/ no win situations.
One thinks one has found a voice from the past or present and then eugenics or propsychiatry, or something yuck pops up. And some folks one knows which oh my especially when they get community accolades.
Genocide – I now know it comes in so many forms and so many multitudes of deaths.
Ravenbruck – I think of your efforts with the female murders on the reservations.
I am not looking at this point for fixes. At this point I just want voices and eyes and ears atleadt trying to work together.
Also. Even in Germany in WEII there was Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the Stolz siblings of the Ehite Rose Society.
So there are humans everywhere inside or outside that help not hurt or hinder.
But finding them and some are destroyed.
But I hold out for that. Not all resisters in WWII died.
And abortion and the fine line that gets so muddied by some groups it’s dometimes like dancing due to shot gun fire. Ethics and dialogue tools needed!
Lots of people are against Hitler. They opposed him back then. And lots of people supported him, and they still support him.
well written, thorough, and…well done, is what I’m getting at, Dr.Burstow.
i read, somewhere, that the word “radical” originally dealt with roots (I hope I didn’t pick that up from some of your previous articles, obviously). and…in today’s ‘post-truth,’ (probably deliberately) dumbed down and drugged up world…
getting to the root of just about any issue, institution, belief system, etc. is…”radical,” indeed.
thanks for the ‘radical’ examination of eugenics and psychiatry, Dr.Burstow. 🙂
You are very welcome.
Thank you for bringing this connection into the discourse. And also for mentioning the ‘work’ of Dr. Ewen Cameron, i remember hearing about him and a lot of other top gun doctors in a lecture by Colin A. Ross, though Ross is more focused on the military aspect of the the whole affair and talks about some of the weird programs MKULTRA and ARTICHOKE and so on…
I also wanted to share a link to a lecture by a historian. Its about a specific area of the german T4 program as ‘durchgefürht’ at the hospital of Maria Gugging in Austria. ‘IST Commemoration Lecture: “Nazi Medical Crimes at the Psychiatric Hospital Gugging” by Herwig Czech’.
Been a year since i saw it, but i remember it as very well made and informative:
Maybe listen to some Bach afterwards to clear your mind:
In The Netherlands psychiatrists have successfully forced legislation to allow them to euthanize their patients when they express an explicit wish to die.
The official Dutch version of the APA released a guideline that instructed institutions to release their patients with an explicit death wish onto the street, so that they could put an end to their life on the street.
The head of the employee department of the Dutch rail ways responded with disgust and argued that many of those patients would jump in front of a train, causing trauma to their employees.
Soon after, politics allowed psychiatrists to euthanize their patients and the numbers have been growing rapidly since with hundreds of people to be euthanized by a psychiatrist each year in the tiny country.
There are strong indications that psychiatry exacerbates problems and makes them chronic. That makes it ethically irresponsible to allow psychiatrists to use euthanasia, even though there may be situations where people can genuinely choose to end their lives while there is nothing wrong with their body. The fact that – in view of the fierce criticism of psychiatry by many scholars – it cannot be excluded that psychiatry has provided inadequate care or even had a detrimental influence on the opinion and decision-making of an individual, makes it ethically irresponsible to allow psychiatrists to euthanize their patients.
What good intending doctor could have such a strong will to end the life of their patients?
A citation from their press release shows their intent:
“Psychiatrists have hardly any opportunities to help patients with suicide, especially if they have been admitted involuntarily, and have to rely on controversial treatment methods such as several years of isolation cells or electroshock.”
They presented themselves as sad and powerless victims that were being hurt by the “bad government” that did not allow them to euthanize their patients.
Many people who now end up in an emergency situation, maybe for years of time, are now being presented with an option to have their life ended by a doctor eager to help them. For some it may be perceived as the only choice.
In regards to the relevance of my comment, the “medical murder” during the Holocaust was essentially justified as “involuntary euthanasia”, a medical procedure. The patients were killed both for their own good and for that of the community. It was euthanasia under duress.
The Dutch guideline that lead to the legalization of euthanasia by a psychiatrist was in 2010. It is almost 10 years later and it may be that the life of about 1000 patients has been ended by a psychiatrist during that time.
I personally want to maintain respect for people’s will to end their life, of which I cannot judge. But considering the facts, of which the history that is mentioned in this article is a part, I believe that it is irresponsible to allow psychiatrists to apply euthanasia. It doesn’t seem logical or healthy that a ‘doctor’ is committed to ending the life of his or her patients.
Arjan, etc, I support people’s right to end their lives. At the same time, the very last people I would like to see as in any way involved in this are psychiatrists.
Thank you for the reply and for the article!
People with mental problems are vulnerable. When the door for euthanasia is open, a psychiatrist has many options available to guide someone to make such a choice. The step to forced euthanasia is just a tiny step away and a psychiatrist is skillful in verbal manipulation.
Hundreds of depressed patients in The Netherlands were locked in a stinking isolation cell for more than 1 year time. It included innocent 22 year old girls who spoke of severe damage. If psychiatrists are capable of such, it is only logical that some of those patients may become victim when presented with a choice to end their life as a medical treatment option.
I hope that your article may help to make people look more critically at practices such as euthanasia within psychiatry.
Read “Suicide and the soul”. Without this book, you are placing death in the psychiatric hands. Our small ego does not control death or the whole of psychological reality.
Death is not the property of your ego . Death is not the property of medicine. Death is not the property of theologians
Death belongs to psychological reality. Death belongs to psychological reality which is beyond the control of small ego.
We are not the owners of the psyche. Death does not need pity. Death and psyche need to be respected.
And spiritualists maniacs and materialistic maniacs has gone too far.
Psyche is the ruler here, not stupid psychiatric judges without brain.
Thank you for your comment! Hopefully it will help people realize that euthanasia is not the only choice. It may be difficult for some people to look further when a doctor appointed to help them advises euthanasia as a solution.
People who want to commit suicide may be especially vulnerable. How would they cope with a situation in which a psychiatrist tells them that they can choose euthanasia? The choice could play inside the mind of a person for some time with as logical outcome: “if the option is available, it must be applicable to me”, as a way to prove that their problems are real. They could live to it while an other therapist may have guided the person in a different direction.
I just read this, and didn’t know it was going on. I had seen an article advertised about a girl euthanized in The Netherlands, but with the way news feeds go, I never read it. But now having looked at it, this has to be one of the most egregious things I’ve heard of.
The one story I read seemed to be of a girl that at a young age was pronounced depressed, and then within a short time had a litany of other diagnosis, and of course the article didn’t at all say what drugs she was treated with, or list their side effects. In fact all of the argument against euthanasia fails to mention at all what her treatment was for depression, and I haven’t seen ONE article listing what medications she was on (any antidepressant will have the side effect of suicidal ideation); and ANY “medication” disabling a person’s mind (which they all psychiatric medications do) can cause hopelessness in the end.
But instead of any report as to exactly what her “treatment” was and any true assessment as to whether such treatment actually correlates with anything but the spike in mental illness we’ve seen since it’s been made out to be biological; there’s actually argument that they killed her rather than treated her, instead of that their treatment is what caused her to give up, to make her suicidal, to see no way out. There’s no real sane discussion about treatment at all, really, that I’ve seen.
I find this so unconscionable, it’s like you can’t have a sane discussion about it in the media.
On article is listed on a google search as saying: “Apart from being 29, Aurelia had no physical ailment.” Oh really? If she was on psychiatric medications she most certainly DID have a physical ailment, and that’s the result of the disabling “medications.”
And NOWHERE does it say that anyone truly informed her that her problem might be the treatment, and nowhere does it say that true informed consent went on; and this then is all treated as being involved with “confidentiality.” That way we can’t really know what “medications” she was on, and it was a major effort to even know the real side effects of ANY psychiatric medication. Since when is lying to a person about the real workings of psychiatric medications something involving “confidentiality.”
“”When I was 12, I suffered from depression. And when I was first diagnosed, they told me I had Borderline Personality Disorder,” she says. “Other diagnoses followed – attachment disorder, chronic depression, I’m chronically suicidal, I have anxiety, psychoses, and I hear voices.””
Thank you for the link and for your insightful comment!
I believe that some people may need protection, and if they would, that it may be extra difficult to discover in time on an individual level because they would disappear. When it comes to euthanasia, privacy may be an even more hefty argument to keep outsiders away.
I personally don’t understand how it could have been allowed. The years leading up to the legislation had seen mainstream media coverage not just about the side effects of antidepressants (increased suicide risk) but also about wrongdoings such as that hundreds of patients were locked in an isolation cell for more than 1 year.
Dutch politicians and insiders (patient union) stated in TV reports that it was not due to a lack of money or personnel and that they observed that it was caused by the ‘culture’ in psychiatry. Psychiatrists appeared to cultivate a situation of powerlessness so that they could treat patients with lucrative anti-psychotics.
Mainstream media openly discussed that psychiatry made problems worse.
The Netherlands also allows involuntary electroshock therapy. It was applied to an innocent girl who’s mother raised the alarm. The girl had received many (invalid) diagnosis and the mother was convinced that a nutrient / food deficiency was the original cause of the issues but psychiatrists ignored her and ultimately demanded forced electroshock. The story was given national attention by celebrity psychiatrist Dr. Bram Bakker. Soon after, the mother was blackmailed by the hospital to take her blog offline under the threat that she was not allowed to see her daughter.
There were more reports about blackmailing. A Dutch politician (House of Representatives) spoke out about it publicly: “Psychiatry blackmails to hide scandals”.
The blackmailing was also publicly discussed in mainstream media in the years leading up to the legislation of euthanasia.
With euthanasia, psychiatry is much stronger in hiding potential wrongdoings.
While attention is important, it may be best if it doesn’t get to a situation in which the public must decide if it’s acceptable or not. The fact is that people want recognition and euthanasia could be perceived as a social “stamp” that someone has the most serious problems. If it gets attention from a public opinion perspective, it may fuel the demand for such an option.
Protection may only be possible from within the profession, on the basis of ethics. If euthanasia is not possible, then people may unconsciously be forced to consider that there must be a way out of somehow, which would give specialists options to guide someone to recovery.
Arjan, I don’t know whether you ever heard of Youri Egorov, but he was an acquaintance of mine, a world famous pianist, and I had three piano lessons with him in Amsterdam while I was at the Utrechts Conservatory (the teacher there, Uhlhorn, wasn’t anywhere as good as Youri, and of course acted like he knew better); but Youri got Aids, and decided to euthanize himself. That was four or five years after I had left The Netherlands. I just knew that he had died of Aids, but then someone on a youtube video of his mentioned how. Now it’s more than 30 years later, but the treatment for Aids is miles and miles better than it was then.
Could you share some of the articles where mainstream media in The Netherlands reports how psychiatry made things worse, and the blackmailing, about antidepressants causing suicidal thoughts, forced electroshock? I’m in the USA, and you pretty much don’t hear hardly anything about such things, the media here is quite tainted, if not corrupt.
Charlie Rose had a whole bunch of shows acting like they knew that mental illness had a biological origin, and that’s on PBS, the educational channel. And of course Torrey was on there, but Robert Whitaker — whose investigative abilities are accurate — wasn’t.
And the attitude here echoes a lot the faux Christian attitude you see in the news reports against Euthanasia, and using as target cases like the girl I shared an article about. They don’t mention at all what psychiatric drugging did, I haven’t read one word about it, and then say that treatment could have saved her, in a very corrupt way promoting a brand of cures: as if psychiatric drugs causing suicidal thoughts, hopelessness, mind fog, disability, the whole list of side effect; that this can be cured with more treatment, when a person becomes suicidal, rather than it’s acknowledged that the drugs correlate with the spike in mental illness, the side effects, etc. I hate to say but in a way it’s legalized torture, with the facade of it being Christian kindness to cover up what treatment may be causing, and statistically has. Colonialism. It’s like economically destabilizing a whole culture, and when it’s gone that far, blaming it on the socialist regime that Allende or Mosaddegh were trying to start, ignoring how non violent countries like The Netherlands, Finland, Norway and Denmark are, that are socialist more; also ignoring how the interventions toppling those regimes favored big business interests over the people, and treating them (big business) in a way that the critics of Allendes’ or Mosaddegh’s initiatives say their government would have taken power away from individuals through. Thus behaving in the way they criticize socialist tendencies, while socialist tendencies have shown to create very non violent societies, but they conveniently ignore that. I recently heard a conversation along these lines from a very nice lady, but she made absolutely no sense, a sort of survivalist ignorance adapting to such a system at large. And then free market isn’t free either it’s controlled by the same big businesses. But psychiatry has CAUSED the spike in mental illness, their medications CAUSE chemical imbalance the alleged disease hasn’t been proven to cause; and when people become despondent, the same as such oppression will destabilized a society, there’s more push for the treatment, even when people become suicidal. And helping the people to commit suicide without proper attention to them knowing how the psychiatric medications may be effecting them isn’t exposing what big business is lying to the populace about either.
And I wouldn’t insult anyone calling that insane, because insanity doesn’t have the ability to hold onto such corrupt constructed ideology. Insanity is a person expressing trauma rather than being controlled by it regarding what they are allowed to see as real or not. Insanity is such mindset breaking down. There’s a difference between the insistent non reality based thinking of someone that’s brain washed, and mental illness. One is more sensitive, flexible and human than the other.
I’m not pro or con euthanasia, but I think there are a lot of healing modalities that aren’t acknowledged at all, and in the case of mental illness, we aren’t really talking about a healing modality, we’re talking about causing brain damage and addiction to controlled substances, creating a spike in mental illness rather than a decline, and then because of the ideology that destabilizing and disabling a mind is a cure and how you make people docile and impressionable, and when they’ve conformed they are cured…this is seen as a magical way to not have to even question assumptions of what’s called a healing modality or a whole society.
That only helps the people that think you have to conform or you’re at fault, and that’s fascism pretty much, whether one thinks it’s going to save the world or not. And it’s like the missionaries that went to the colonies spreading “Christianity,’ as if the savages had to be converted or they’d go to Hell. Same mind control, you’re under attack by the Devil or a chemical imbalance, and so that excuses forced treatment, dehumanizing in the name of “science” whose ideology only sounds like science, same as the “religion” those missionaries were spreading around was Christian at all.
And there’s an awful lot of “Science” that doesn’t add up at all. Go look at what the founders of electricity (and magnetism) said about it (electricity and electrons): Tesla, Heaviside, JC Maxwell & CP Steinmet. It doesn’t even add up to the assumptions being taught, and in the beginning Heaviside showed that what’s called free energy existed, because of the way electromagnetism really flows and resonates. Thomas Bearden has material about this on his website, also. When something is a wave pattern moving at the speed of light where time stops, what is it resonating in that has to be a matrix beyond time? THAT’S not even considered, although many energy healers might tap into what’s going on when they change the outcome in time of someone’s life. Like Jesus did. For-give. Free energy. Not for “Debt.” Or you have to pay your debts because there’s a limit to what one can give; exactly the excuse (debt) they tried to use to convert the savages for their own good (the debt was they’d go to Hell because of original sin, but wouldn’t if Jesus “paid” that debt). As if such debt existed, exists, or ever will exist; and now it’s a chemical imbalance….
Thank you for your comment. In regards to sources, you can find them on http://www.zielenknijper.nl and YouTube.
A part of the story about forced electroshock therapy for an innocent girl is available in the following article. It shows comments from the mother who was long ignored and was only taken serious after she received national media attention.
The mother currently manages the Facebook of Zielenknijper.nl and has published a book about her story.
In regards to the corruption. The real problem may be very simple: making money on disease creates an incentive for more disease. Chronically ill is most profitable.
It is a simple reward system. “If you don’t do it, someone else will”. It’s nonsensical to fight corrupt behavior as incidents when the core reward system drives involved parties to promote disease.
In regards to euthanasia in psychiatry. I have seen people change in psychiatric care, from happy and energetic human beings into zombies in which life appeared to have disappeared. People are being broken in psychiatry.
I find it very dangerous that psychiatrists have received the ability to end the life of their patients. I can imagine situations in which people could become victim after years of ‘torture’ and most scary is that it will be even more unlikely that they could have received help from media attention, politics or reporting, because it is very difficult for outsiders such as politicians or reporters to interfere and assess a situation when it comes to someones personal choice to end life.
I believe that patients need protection from within the profession. And while there may be people who truly want to end their life, you cannot ignore the fact that some people are being tortured and broken in psychiatry. They should receive priority because they need protection.
I forgot to mention:
A part of the lecture that really made me think was what the historian tells about the criteria, made by the ‘medical experts’ for who was allowed to live and who not. He tells the only criteria that stood out statistically was: ‘the ability to perform constructive work’.
Really made me think. I saw the lecture while i was unemployed and meeting all sorts of well meaning system-people treating me as an object they had to get rid of.
Ironically I could perform constructive work before psychiatry had its way with me.
A bunch of physical, autoimmune disorders now. Map-fingerprint eye distrophy and inflammatory bowel disease. As well as CNS damage and heart arrhythmia.
Psychiatry and Psychotherapy exist because we need to be sustaining a huge underclass. Otherwise we would need to be coming up with such constructive work for all the people.
Some day we probably won’t bother with the ~mental health~ system and just send people directly to economic processing camps.
A very informative essay Dr. Burstow. Thanks to you and other professionals who write for MIA I learned SO much this past year and am zealous in telling others to check out the site.
You make the eugenics connection to psychiatry very clear. I could understand lobotomy and ECT having a eugenic connection but your essay made me realize that psychiatric drugs certainly do as well. Seeing this connection will help the average person comprehend as you put it “the horror that is psychiatry”. It is very appalling how they are targeting children even more now.
The psychiatric agenda is everyone gets a label and everyone gets a pill (or cocktail). Psychiatry wants everyone but themselves corrected or fixed… that is pathological. Wonder if any practicing psychiatrists take their own damaging psych drugs. Likely not, as arrogance and the guild interests have them believe everyone else is deeply flawed but they are somehow “perfect” specimens. Thanks again for all your work and advocacy.
Glad you found it helpful, Rosalee.
Thanks for a very compelling, though disturbing, article. It’s always enlightening to read your material.
Much thanks, Philip.
This is an excellent article. Thank you for bringing all these data points together in one piece. Have you read The Protest Psychosis How Schizophrenia Became a Black Disease by Jonathan M. Metzl?
I see the ways that the Mental Illness Myth and that the Autism Aspergers Myths are propagated, and that survivors are steered into non-honor and non-redress based pursuits as being of a crucial importance and something which cannot ever be compromised on.
The abuses continue because the survivors are still getting abused in other ways.
Removed for Moderation.
I think that it will be in the works of Foucault and some of his followers that some real progress is made, and especially in those later works which gave us the ideas of BioPower, BioPolitics, and Neoliberalism.
We have a vast underclass of people, who’s lives totally revolve around the ~mental health~ system.
And we have NGO’s which are little more than an outgrowth of our county’s ~mental health~ apparatus.
I guess long ago, LGBTQ activism was very radical, dealing with areas which most people really could not accept.
But as I reported on before, an acquaintance with someone who was on the Board of our largest LGBTQ group. As I see now, it is largely concerned with ~mental health~ ~psychotherapy~ and ~recovery~ matters, and it is very close to our county’s mental health, therapy, and recovery system.
I gather that it would be mostly Trans people who would have a harder time functioning, the way our world is set up. So this LQBTQ activist group is mostly then their version of the ~mental health~ system. So accept for standing up for LQBTQ issues, it is not a very radical group.
And then my acquaintance, he gets by in life by supporting the mental health system. Cops like him because he is in their records, one of the ~crazies~ who accept their ~illness~, and I think takes his meds. And when he is not doing that, it’s Crystal Meth.
He accepts ~Bipolar 2~, ~Asperger’s~, ~Psychotherapy~, and ~Recovery~, and I gather that this LGBTQ activist group is pretty much the same way.
And I am talking here, going beyond the LGBTQ sphere, of a huge huge underclass, placated, stabilized, tranquilized, therapized.
I believe that in Foucault’s work that he does deal with the full scope of the problem.
Without question, more than any other philosopher, Foucault understood how power and how discourse operates.
So that is where I want to go. I want a theory which will give a way of opposing Psychiatry and the drugging, and also the con that is Psychotherapy. And I want to go after the nonsense which is the Recovery Movement. To me they all seem to have the same intent, to create an underclass, so that we don’t need to question the Self-Reliance Ethic in an advanced industrial and information economy. We don’t need the extra workers, but we have the people, so what do we do with them?
So Foucault wrote the stuff about BioPower and BioPolitics in the late 70’s, a series of lectures.
Then people seem to see Alain Badiou as the successor to both Foucault and to Deleuze and Guattari. He wrote The Subject in 1982. Might be a book which shows how to oppose BioPower and BioPolitics.
And then Judith Butler at UC Berkeley, I think she has written about ways to oppose BioPower and BioPolitics, and it is difficult. Sounds like she sees it as something which cannot be direct.
And Butler is a partner of Wendy Brown, one of our major theorists of Neo-Liberalism, and the author of “Undoing the Demos”.
I think these are the things we should be looking at, not debating with Psychotherapists and with people who want to add street drugs into the mix of chemicals used to keep people tranquilized.
And I also want to go after this ~Autism Asperger’s Neurological Difference~ sham.
As I know, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, includes a provision of protection from labeling.
I consider this very important, essential. And it is where I break with all the Autism and Neurodiversity advocates, and even with this Nick Walker and his Radical Neurodiversity.
People have Cognitive Liberty today. People can think anyway they want.
Now if you say it, that is a different matter. Say the wrong things, and especially to your psychotherapist, and you will likely end up handcuffed to a table in a police interrogation cell.
So I see this protection from labeling as far more important that this idea of Cognitive Liberty. End the labeling and then everybody is just who they are. Problem solved.
I read the stuff the Autism advocates write, and I can understand and identify with much of it. But I interpret it totally differently. I do not see there as being any objective reality to Autism, Asperger’s, or to this Neurological Difference. I just see that we have a cruel world which uses bullying to socialize, and that most people have little refuge from this.
I also notice one thing though, though they do not say it, I see in the writings of these self identifying autistics, that most of the time things start to look better for them, once they no longer live with their parents.
So Nick Walker pushes this idea of Radical Neurodivergence as far as possible, so that it does not seem to mean anything.
But of these courses he has, he also says”
“The instructor must be autistic.”
“The Instructor Must Be a Participant
in Autistic Culture, Community, and Resistance”
“At least 80% of the assigned readings should be by autistic authors.”
So I see his work as being completely misguided. He is propagating the myth of Autism, and he is trafficking in the labels. I do not see any reason that the labels cannot just be dumped immediately.
Sami Timimi says that with the label, people buy in to a fantasy, “Now someone is going to really figure out what is going on.” And yes I see this, too, in the writings of these self proclaimed autistics. But I see that the purpose it serves for them has to do with the Self-Reliance Ethic, and with the need to exonerate perpetrators.
I also notice something else, besides Nick Walker being involved in this thing about giving MDMA to ~Autistics~ to alleviate ~social anxiety~, I see that this California Institute of Integral Studies has lots of stuff about using street drugs, ~Psychedelics~, as an expansion of the psychiatric drugging travesty.
I have looked over many years at their web site for various reasons. I never saw any stuff like this. But today I have to say that what this Nick Walker is doing, propagating the myth that there is some neurological difference behind the popular phenomenon of Autistic Identity, is just plain wrong and it needs to be ended.
And then of CIIS, I now consider it suspect.
I feel that the protection from labeling and the ending of these identities formed in a context of abuse, are far more important, than worrying about how people think, or about what curious mannerisms they might have.
Removed for moderation.
Pope John Paul II wrote a good bit about what he termed “The Culture of Death,” and the way this death culture was taking over and destroying much of modern culture. I read some of what he wrote, then I visited the cchr website, where they discuss psychiatry as “the Industry of Death,” or something similar, and…
I see overlap, obviously. Psychiatrists start patients off on a downward spiral and then see them off to death itself on a regular basis. Sometimes, the death is “natural causes,” but hastened by psych drugging. Other times, the death is suicide, often with prescribed drugs or in part because of altered states induced by Rx treatment. And then…
the unfortunate ones who end up destitute, broken, severely brain damaged -but still alive- often seem to end up homeless, in jail, or in prison. Maybe more ‘progressive’ states use the state hospital, but where I live, the state hospital has somehow become a place where only extreme cases go, unless there’s a good lawyer involved…and I think my state is fairly typical in that regard.
we do live in a sick society (I’m speaking of the US here). But…the witch doctors are making us all ever more sick and truly destroyed, for filthy lucre’s sake.
When does it stop? Will it stop?
I think one reason I have difficulty imagining myself organizing with other ex-patients/survivors, etc. is because…we’re a silenced bunch, already. Especially for those of us who have survived and overcome severe treatment and all that junk, the powers that be get angry when we use our voices, raise our voices, God forbid yell…
because the whole point is to shut us up, isn’t it?
I chose not to have children while in my 20s because I didn’t want someone I supposedly loved to have to go through what I lived with. (I have never regretted it.) I think the point is perfect academically, but perhaps a little light on the hard realities of people’s lives. Perhaps in your next paper? This is a reality that people rarely speak of.
^^^^^^^ I think as a people we are becoming more conscious in our living patterns and in our choices.
As it has been, the Middle-Class has lived in Bad Faith, that is not admitting that they have to make choices, not living up to their own values. And so you get people who blame the wretched state of their own lives on the children that they did not need to have.
I feel that most of these ~neurological difference issues like Autism/ Asperger~ and most of these ~Mental Illness~ issues arise from this exploitation of children which is the middle-class family. People are having children to give themselves a public identity. And then the pedagogy manuals do not help, they are a major driving force in perpetuating the problem.
Dr. Burstow, as this is from Toronto you may have already heard about this. It is not the exact same topic but surely demonstrates corruption and abuse of power by those in the medical system.
Wasn’t sure where and how to post re: Alex’s comments. Alex, your words are so helpful and the new project of writing very cool.
It’s so dicey because so many of us have been abused and ah the capacity to do moral harm to others is there sometimes more than other times.
And working through the abuse and being able to identify triggers on an ongoing basis takes as you said time and energy.
Philo from Alexandria – be kind for everyone is fighting a great battle. Yes but how to talk truth to power and feel the emotions without the emotions overcoming civility?
That is where- some type of partner witness comes in- a team sometimes works better than a single voice but again can also devolve into groupthink re: eugenics.
So my thought for now.
Eugenics was always a pseudo science, just like Social Darwinism.
Now we have the pseudo sciences of ~mental illness~ and of ~autism~. These stigmatize the lives of vast numbers of people, and they expose the survivors to other types of medical abuses and con artistry.
What it comes down to is that we no longer have the ability to create living wage jobs for all of these people. Even with two world wars, a cold war, a war on drugs, a war on terrorism, and seemingly now a war on immigrants, we still produce more of all goods and services than we need.
It actually costs less to just keep them pacified somehow. And so I do fear for where this could lead.
These guards in the detention centers, you know what they must be doing. I am sure that they’ve got other uniforms folded up and stashed away, like at the bottoms of their lockers. When these internment centers are liberated, these guards will already be long gone. If anyone tries to stop them, they’ll just say that they work at Walmart or Burger King, something like that.
R.I. attorney general has interviewed more than 30 witnesses in Wyatt Detention Facility probe
What is the full history of these detention centers? When where they built and for what stated purpose? And then, how have they been used since?
Seems like it is probably a Republican Spoils System.
AG: Wyatt probe could take weeks
Sen. Merkley Condemns Trump’s War Against Migrant Families as U.S. Moves to Indefinitely Jail Kids
The Trump administration is moving to indefinitely detain migrant children and their families, reversing decades of U.S. policy. The Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services is expected to issue a new rule today to withdraw from a 1997 federal court settlement known as the Flores agreement, which put a 20-day limit on migrant family detentions. We speak with Democratic Senator Jeff Merkley, who made headlines last year when he was barred from entering an old Walmart where the government was detaining about 1,500 immigrant children in Brownsville, Texas.
Use zoom outs plus changing back to maps to see where this is.
Warning, this link is ICE
Detention Facility Locator
and of course these are privatized government, mostly Republicans making money off of the situation.
AG Neronha’s press briefing
I have only read part of this, but it seems to explain why some people in the US think they ways that they do, and hence why they voted for Trump.
California, 18 other states sue over Trump policy on indefinite detention of migrant children
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California opened another front in its legal battle with the Trump administration over immigration policies on Monday as officials announced a federal lawsuit challenging a new rule that allows indefinite detention of migrant children and their families.
The 19-state lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California and is co-led by Massachusetts, was unveiled by Gov. Gavin Newsom and state Attorney General Xavier Becerra, who criticized the president for ignoring a court settlement agreement that limited detention of children to 20 days.
“No child deserves to be left in conditions inappropriate and harmful for their age,” Becerra said Monday. “The actions by this administration are not just morally reprehensible, they’re illegal. Children don’t become subhuman simply because they are migrants.”
Illinois joins lawsuit on migrant child protections rollback
R.I. detention center inmate dies at hospital
20 attorney generals sue to protect safety of immigrant children in civil detention
Today, Sacramento California
Gov. Gavin Newsom, Attorney General Xavier Becerra announce legal action on immigration
“…this administration has taken an action which we intend to prove in court is not permissible by law…”
***** Watch This Video ******
19 States, D.C. File Suit Over Trump Administration’s Rules That Would Allow Immigrant Children To Be Held Indefinitely
California sues over Trump plan to hold immigrant children indefinitely
Gov. Newsom, AG Becerra react to President Trump’s national emergency declaration 2/15/19
AG Becerra, Governor Newsom, and California Leadership, Hosts Press Conference on Census 6/27/19
Gov. Gavin Newsom and Attorney General Becerra are expected to announce legal action on immigration 8/16/19
Gov. Gavin Newsom, Attorney General Xavier Becerra announce legal action on immigration 8/26/19
JEWISH PROTESTERS FACING SIX MONTHS IN JAIL HAVE FIRST COURT DATE
Trump reportedly promised pardons to aides who break the law to build border wall by 2020 election
Telling people that it is okay to seize property and break environmental laws is grounds for impeachment.
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Our current Neo-Liberal / Neo-Fascist order depends upon delegitimating a huge portion of the population, to justify them living in poverty. This is done in part via the Mental Health System, but also via the Autism-Neurodiversity System, and also via the Recovery / Salvation Industries.
All related to the old bogus science of social Darwinism.
And as such, childhood is getting more and more medicalized. Many parents want to be driving their child to doctors. Now there are more such doctors, kinds that don’t need to be fooled, that represent new justifications that they can find in the child themselves.
So we need to find ways to fight this.
Science and the Swastika : Hitler’s Biological Soldiers
Dr Karl Brandt, besides being Hitler’s personal physician, he ran the Nazi medical system. He was executed.
Looks like Donald Trump wants to set up internment camps for the homeless. This is what it sounds like. And then who knows where it could go from there.
Bonnie please see UK psych special interest group: Evolutionary Psychiatry. If you don’t already know they have newsletters. Can MIA email this to Bonnie plz.
People feel desoriented, lost, mindless because of those drugs.Those facilities are behavioral facilities, used to correct the behaviour of people.Those drugs are made to same purpose as ones who made eugenics.It’s real, but gene theory is still active theory.Many psychiatries are using this theory.