The New York Times Uncritically Repeats Discredited Antidepressant Claims


From CounterPunch/Bruce Levine, PhD: “For serious journalists and editors, it should be obvious that the institution of psychiatry was put into a difficult position by the widespread public attention of Moncrieff’s review that concluded no evidence for the serotonin imbalance theory of depression, and that the psychiatry establishment had a strong need for damage control to its credibility. And it should also be obvious that psychiatry, as an institution, has a powerful motive for declaring antidepressants to be very effective regardless of the lack of a neurobiological rationale of correcting a chemical imbalance—the rationale that has convinced so many people to use SSRI antidepressants.

Sadly, the New York Times, once again [as with their 2002 and 2003 reporting on supposed weapons of mass destruction in Iraq], evidenced no skepticism about declarations from sources with powerful motives to persuade the public to believe a self-serving narrative that is disputed by the evidence.”



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  1. I have read medical articles in the New York Times for many years. And for many years I’ve been struck by the poor quality of the newspaper’s medical reporting, not just in psychology but in other fields as well. It’s surprising that some of the reporters have degrees in fields that should make them conversant with critical thinking and statistics. But they’re often not.

    In the medical field, too many NYT articles simply regurgitate the conventional and often corrupt thinking of mainstream medicine. Sometimes smaller, less prestigious publications have far better articles on medical topics than the NYT.

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    • Hi Marie,

      I’m writing an investigative story on antipsychotics and diabetes. I noticed some of your comments on other articles related to antipsychotics here.

      I’m looking for folks who took Abilify, Zyprexa, or another med for any reason (including depression, sleep, ASD, dementia) and then developed diabetes or other serious metabolic issues. I wonder do you or someone you know have experiences with this issue?

      This is happening more and more but rarely discussed. I’m hoping to find a range of sources from pediatric to elderly to show the scope of the problem.

      I have experience working with sources on sensitive mental health topics. I’m happy to protect your identity if needed. I’d love to know if you’d like to connect.

      All my best,

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