Monday, February 18, 2019

Comments by Lawrence Kelmenson, MD

Showing 100 of 308 comments. Show all.

  • If psychiatry ever acknowledges/addresses this, it will predictably use it as an excuse to introduce yet more “medication assisted treatment” – in other words, to put yet more addictive drugs into the system, as doctors are doing now when prescribing the opioid Suboxone to “treat” opioid addiction. Besides, academic psychiatry can never be viewed as a potential source of valid research – everything it’s come out with has and will always be pure lies. Let’s not ask anything of such a field.

  • The_cat:

    I think you’re right about the kids drugged for “ADHD” turning out to be today’s heroin overdosers. In my “Psychiatry’s 12 Step Program for Producing Heroin Addicts” article I cite a lot of data correlating these two events. And I don’t think it’s just their getting drugged; I think it’s also because their parents/schools stop raising them and expecting them to learn/mature, due to being falsely told that their normal childhood immaturity is a “permanent brain disease”. Then these kids grow up and “raise” their kids the same way since it’s all they know as normal.

    Lawrence

  • The_cat:

    I’ll respond. Tens of millions of households (in America only) do have stashes of opioids lying around in case they’re needed for “survival”. That’s how millions of thrill-seeking kids got started on a path that has led to so many of them dying by the age of 24.

    Lawrence

  • despondent:

    Yes, having the world’s reserve currency has enabled the U.S. to spend money recklessly, expanding its debts to astronomical levels without causing inflation, despite losing its manufacturing base. And our main lender is China, which has successfully turned the tables on us (Americans had also peddled opium to China in the 1800s):

    The same Chinese ports that were used to deliver opium to China in the 1800s, are not only now being used to ship us China’s manufactured goods that we depend on so much, but also to ship us Southeast Asian heroin (and recently fentanyl) since the 1960s. So China finally ended its opium epidemic in the 50s/60s through its government’s programs, since which it has thrived economically by taking over manufacturing, and turning the U.S. into a nation helplessly addicted to many of its things. We are the vulnerable ones now.

    And if you go back in history to the 1700s (before China became a nation of opium addicts), the trade balance had been markedly in favor of China at that time, since China had produced much fine porcelain, tea, and silks that were very desirable in England, while England had little to sell to China – until it colonized India and was thus able to grow/sell cheap opium.

    Lawrence

  • Rachel777:

    When so many new “epidemics” of previously rare “illnesses” like FM, CPS, ADHD, Bipolar, Depression, GAD, panic disorder, etc.,etc. are constantly arising at the same time, isn’t it time to stop looking for separate causes for each, and to instead look for one common cultural change that caused them all? Isn’t it time to consider that they’re all a result of the medical industry’s increasingly succeeding at manipulating Americans into becoming its subservient zombies, just like Milner and Olds succeeded in doing to all their rats?

    Lawrence

  • Surviving and Thriving:

    This blog is the opposite of dismissive – It’s an attempt to help people avoid the mistake of looking to doctors to help pain for which there’s no clear underlying treatable condition, since this will likely lead not only to their pain becoming more excruciating/incessant/long-lasting, but also to many complications, including possibly early death.

    Lawrence

  • JanCarol:

    Yes, if there’s a treatable cause of pain, like an abscess or coronary artery blockage or broken bone, doctors can help. But if not, then the “management” they offer often turns out to be chronic addictive drugs and never-ending forays into the latest “miracle” injections, procedures, and surgeries, which all produce their own side effects and complications that must also be addressed. This often takes over the patient’s life, and becomes all that it’s about. And if they can’t work with all this happening, then the doctor is ready to put them out on disability so they can devote the time “needed” for their medical “management”. How convenient all this is for the doctor.

    Lawrence

  • Shaun f:

    Regulation of psychiatry and “pain management” is a sham, because it only confronts practices that go against the norm of the field. Since the norm of these fields is to lie to, abuse, and addict people, regulation actually enforces the continuation of these practices.

    Lawrence

  • Yes, the U.S. is the world leader in obesity, which can exacerbate pain. But our obesity epidemic itself is likely partly a result of our 50-year love affair with quick-fix drugs for our many “newly discovered” diseases, many of which are addictive, most of which make people so comfortably numb that they’re unlikely to move around or do physical activities, and are more likely to sit around and eat instead. When I hurt my back, what fixed it and prevented it from returning was daily walking/jogging/exercising, which was tough at first but became easier over time. American doctors won’t help, since they don’t want your pain to get better in the long-term; they want you to become chronically ill and thus permanently dependent on them. So yes, our chronic pain epidemic isn’t just from our massive opioid dependence, but from our massive dependence on all of modern medicine’s “miracle pills”.

  • Steve:

    Why is there such reluctance to bash doctors? Nearly all psychiatrists, pediatricians, pain management doctors, addiction medicine specialists, etc. are getting rich via permanently addicting clients, which they know is deceitful/harmful. They do it anyway since they know they can get away with it, because all the other doctors are doing it, and because people will view doctors as virtuous/honest caretakers no matter what they do. People seem to need to put doctors up on a pedestal, and to have religious-type faith that they would never do bad things since they’re more altruistic/caring/trustworthy than other humans. But they aren’t; they’re just regular people in the unusual position of being revered like gods who have been granted unlimited authority/privileges. It’s the public’s misplaced faith in them that’s enabling them to take advantage of the public. It’s time to let go of this delusion and face reality.

    Lawrence

  • Auntie Psychiatry:

    Great youtube video. It shows how people can choose to buy into the idea of having a disabling CPS destiny (or any other newly ‘discovered” MTD) that rules their lives, or choose to instead let go of that identity and its drugs, and to regain control over their lives and their destiny. The video shows that to succeed, the support of others is vital, and that much struggling is required that’s worth the effort in the end.

    Lawrence

  • Richard Lewis:

    I will respond now to your question, now that I have taken time to consider it. The medicalization of everyday life for profit is largely unique to post-1980 United States, even though capitalism has been present here, and in the rest of the world, for centuries. What is different about post-1980 U.S. is a unique combination of capitalism and socialism, that has enabled this. Yes, there are and have always been medical profiteers, but what enabled our huge, immensely harmful medical industrial complex to develop was the institution of two social programs, medicare and medicaid, which will pay for whatever is billed, no matter the cost, without any justifiable basis needed. Private insurers generally have to try to follow their lead as they’re able, but they’re not able to even remotely keep up with medicare/medicaid’s ever-rising lavish spending, which costs over a trillion dollars of federal money yearly. It uses up a far higher percentage of our GDP than any other country. It’s our nation’s biggest expense, and is largely responsible for our ballooning debt which is also harming our nation.

    As the medical industry caught on to the sky being the limit on how much can be extracted from these programs (such as by making up “medically treatable diseases” to trick people into getting permanently addicted to speed, opiates, or benzos), the amount of government money spent per medicare beneficiary rose about tenfold, inflation adjusted, from the amount spent during the first decade of its existence. Jackpot! So there’s my answer, Richard. If our health care and our health insurance sectors were both private, or if they were both socialized, I don’t think we’d be witnessing horrible actions such as greedy, drug-dealing doctors zombifying nearly the entire American population. It’s the combination of the two.

    Lawrence

  • knowledgeispower:

    As your moniker implies, we first need to bring these truths to the American public, before the public will hold all of those who participated accountable. Until then, the rampant drug dealing that is the norm for my profession will continue, because of the power that they derive from having successfully duped the public with false knowledge.

    Lawrence

  • Sylvain:

    Amazingly, there is such a law, and it’s been in effect since 1914: The Harrison Narcotics Act, which for a period of time was enforced by the jailing of long-term heroin-prescribing doctors (it was the most prescribed opiate at that time, and this law was passed partially to address a heroin epidemic that they caused). It did make doctors cautious about prescribing opiates long term for many years. But the Harrison Act only makes it illegal if not prescribed for actual medical treatment of real illness. So by making up CPS and other new diseases, doctors were able to circumvent this law, and by declaring addiction to also be an MTD, suboxone can also be legally given to known addicts even though it’s a known opioid, again cleverly circumventing this law.

    Lawrence

  • r r:

    The whole point of my article is that daily opioids is not only the worse of two evils, there is nothing worse than it. That’s why so many people die who follow that path – the agony of their worsening withdrawals, and their loss of any ability to enjoy anything or get any relief except by steadily increasing their pill dosage, leads them there. The advice I give to people who are addicted to opioids, licitly (for “chronic pain”) or illicitly, is to start gradually detoxing as soon as possible, since the longer you wait, the tougher the detox. Then, after the hellish detox is over, you have to patiently endure several months of persistent withdrawals. But eventually they will start to abate, and eventually your body will learn again how to make its own endorphins, and you will finally start to feel better emotionally and physically than you have in years, and you will realize that most (but not all) of your emotional and physical incessant pain was caused by your opioid dependence rather than some newly-invented MTD, and what you are left with is tolerable.

    Lawrence

  • out:

    I didn’t mean to judge the people who become addicted, I meant to judge my profession for making heroin-in-pill-form too easily available, knowingly dispensing it long enough to produce lifelong, at times fatal, addiction, and knowingly telling lies about it being “medically necessary” and safe if taken as prescribed. I believe that “clamping down on pain to prevent chronic pain developing” is an example of one of the lies my field has promulgated to the public to trick them; It’s actually the opposite – most pain is acute and spontaneously subsides as our body adapts to it, but this is prevented by chronic opioid dispensing since it shuts down our own endorphin production, and produces withdrawal pain that worsens over time and requires higher and higher doses to alleviate.

    And of course I’m not against brief opiates after surgery; that was normal medical practice for centuries. It is the post-1990 reckless 30 day supplies, often with refills, that I am saying are never called for, unless someone is terminally ill so it won’t matter if their dose has to be steadily raised whenever tolerance/withdrawals develop, eventually to lethal levels.

    Lawrence

  • I don’t think it’s a stretch at all to attribute the epidemic largely to chronic opioid prescribing, since over 200 million opioid prescriptions have been filled yearly in the U.S. for the past 14 years (a tenfold increase in total opioids from 1990), accounting for 80 to 90% of the entire world’s opioid prescriptions, and we’re the only country with a chronic pain (or overdose) epidemic. Doesn’t it make sense to look for dramatic, rapid changes in a culture to explain dramatic, rapid events within that culture?

  • I also tried to show that these “treatments” may be, to a large degree, responsible for our current chronic pain epidemic, since opioid use/withdrawals make pain much worse and incessant in the long term, and may persist for months or years after someone who was addicted to them stops them.

  • cali:

    I never said that everyone has the exact same amount of physical or emotional pain. I merely said that everyone experiences these, so by transforming them into “medically treatable diseases”, the medical field has made everyone a potential candidate for their addictive “treatments”.

    Lawrence

  • Ben:

    I don’t think there’s as much money to be made in helping children become mature, independent adults, as there is in turning them into permanently helpless, disabled drug addicts who will come for “treatment” monthly for the rest of their lives. So I don’t think it will fly here in the U.S.

    Lawrence

  • Marilyn:

    Great article. I agree with everything you say. But beyond a one-at-a-time strategy, how can we dissuade American parents from increasingly adopting psychiatry’s quick/easy, socially acceptable approach of drugging their kids into submission? Not only does the medical model allow them to evade any responsibility for creating or addressing their child’s issues, it also awards them victim status. They can even thereby evade their entire obligation to raise their kids, while receiving government financial assistance and “accommodations” that enable their kids to slide through school. It’s no wonder we’re losing our overall war.

    Lawrence

  • We should be getting desperate here in the U.S., since pro-medical model propaganda is getting increasingly entrenched in our schools, government, scientific circles, media, and entertainment. Trillions of dollars have been spent on promoting/expanding the psychiatric system, which is drawing in an ever-rising percentage of our population – We’re losing the war, and “Brave New World” is quickly approaching.

    In World War II, we allied with the Soviet Union not because we approved of what was occurring there, but because we had to to defeat the Nazis. After 6 years, MIA has only 11,000 followers; Tom Cruise has hundreds of millions of fans, the overwhelming majority of whom aren’t Scientologists. If his doing a video interview here led to MIA having to fend off accusations of being connected to Scientology, it would be worth the trouble, since mixed publicity is much better than no publicity – It would greatly expand the audience hearing the truth about psychiatry.

    And everyone who reads MIA’s articles or views its mission statement/staff will see no evidence of Scientology (unlike CCHR’s website which cites co-founding by Scientology and Szasz). They’ll only see a diverse range of people from all walks of life and belief systems being welcomed to exercise free speech in true democratic fashion. So I ask – Are you really interested in stopping psychiatry from destroying our whole country, or are you content to just complain and chat about it with each other?

  • Dragon Slayer:

    I think the Tom Cruise idea is brilliant. When he talked about psychiatry being a pseudoscience, the chemical imbalance theory being a scam, and psychiatrists being drug dealers such as giving speed to kids, it sounded right out of MIA. Unlike the Church of Scientology, Tom Cruise has had a huge fan base for many years. Associating with him would bring much attention to his/our cause, and could lead to his anti-psychiatry talk being taken more seriously, since MIA’s many rational/scientific/respectable articles would legitimize it and show that he’s not alone – many others agree with him.

    The media has successfully portrayed him as a buffoon and psychiatrists have labeled him as dangerous/ridiculous, in order to trick the public into not taking his “bizarre rants”, which are merely free/truthful speech, seriously. But I see him as intelligent, free-thinking, non-conformist, funny, spirited, spontaneous, emotional, and creative; these traits are precisely why we enjoy his movies so much. He’s the opposite of the boring zombies who psychiatry portrays as “normal”, and whom psychiatry is increasingly populating our society with. I think it is time to reach out to him. I couldn’t think of a better spokesperson for our cause.

    Lawrence

  • Oldhead:

    We can’t compete with the incredibly massive, well-endowed, ubiquitous pro-psychiatry propaganda campaign on its own turf, as you are suggesting. MIA, despite all of its informative professionals, is not becoming mainstream anytime soon, and it sometimes itself publishes articles that promote psychiatry’s biomedical model. A venue such as youtube, on the other hand, if used successfully, can quickly reach/affect millions of viewers, and many are the very age range (teens) who we should be aiming to if we want to change society. And I don’t care if we have to be tacky in order to succeed.

    Lawrence

  • Paula:

    Thank you for your response, information, and insights. I certainly did not mean to imply that Allen Frances really admitted how crucial his role was in the medicalization of Americans’ everyday lives. He had hoped to play an important role in the DSM-5 task force, so he clearly would have gladly continued to do so if given the opportunity. I am curious to hear from you whether the DSM task force members openly admitted, perhaps during informal get-togethers, that their goal was purely to find more and more ways to dupe the public into improving their fortune/power, or whether it was like I suggested in my article – that this was a trade secret that everyone knew but it was understood that you can never talk about it.

    Lawrence

  • jclaude:

    Firstly, what I said to Rasellas about hallucinations was a response to a question posed in a previous article, and had nothing to do with this one. This article was only about all the newly invented, increasingly spreading “brain diseases” that started with the 1980 DSM, which I referred to in the article. Second, I want to clarify that tardive dyskinesias, a clearly horrible, incapacitating neurological syndrome of involuntary movements caused by “antipsychotic” drugs (chemical lobotomizers), is not what I was discussing in my response to Rasellas. It was tardive akithisias, something which is different and not so clear, as far as what it is and if it’s truly drug-induced.

    As far as my being offensive/dismissive in my response, I see it as completely opposite. I don’t view “mentally ill” people as different from “mentally healthy” people. I see us all as struggling to find ways to deal with the same unpleasant issues/experiences and the same needs, so we can all relate to each other. We’re all in the same boat. And I think all humans cope via “psychosis” – we all avoid reality and have “delusional” beliefs. The only difference is that some ways of habitually adapting are socially accepted and others aren’t. But I don’t judge. I don’t say that some coping styles are “better” than others – To each his own, as far as I am concerned. So trying to understand people in a way that isn’t pathologizing/dehumanizing, but is instead normalizing/humanizing, isn’t doing them a disservice at all. It’s being respectful, accepting, and connecting. I hope that Rasellas saw that this was my goal, even if we disagree somewhat with each other.

    Lawrence

  • Rassellas.redux:

    I’m sorry I didn’t respond to you before. I try to answer all questions, but some slip by me (or was it unconsciously motivated?). I am glad you analyze/question me and think for yourself; I don’t think any authority figures can be trusted. For example, isn’t it possible that those who invented new, unverified, subjective “brain diseases” like “tardive akithisias” are riding the coattails of psychiatry by similarly telling people what they want to hear and condoning regression? Isn’t it possible that they’ve also used pseudoscience to successfully manipulate many, as a way to advance their own popularity? Maybe life was just tough before psych drugs and is still tough after. In any event, a theorist’s personal motivations, and the validity of their theory, are two separate issues.

    As far as how hallucinations help people cope, first of all: Hallucinogens were very popular in the ’60s/’70s, and are still used by many to escape reality and create a better one. We all hallucinate every night, and are often disappointed upon awakening and realizing it was just a wish-fulfilling dream. Don’t we all have fantasies we daydream about? Little kids often converse with imaginary friends and toys that they “bring to life”. Couldn’t adults who have no one to talk with, cope with loneliness by also imagining companions? Since imagined experiences often involve exciting, prominent figures like the FBI, God, etc., this suggests that hallucinations can provide a way to feel important and powerful. When they’re self-denigrating, it could be done to project unacceptable thoughts about oneself onto others who now become responsible for those thoughts. If people hear voices saying to kill someone, they similarly may be projecting their unacceptable urges onto others. You never hear of command auditory hallucinations saying to do community service!

    As far as my “psychiatrising”, I never pushed “diagnoses” or “mental health” on anyone. I always refuted the medical model and suggested that psychiatry’s labels and drugs are scams. The hospital I used to work in was more of a cushy retreat for people to get away from life’s stresses for awhile, until they could get back on their feet after going through a rough time in their life. It had no emergency room or forced commitment, and drugs were used sparingly. Staff was caring and always available to talk to, and there were many recreational/creative activities. I took my clients for long walks for sessions on its beautiful grounds. In my solo practice, I offer a place for clients to cope with feelings/issues by venting to an interested listener who treats them as equals with their own individual stories to tell. We often talk while going for a walk in the trails by my office. I don’t authoritatively tell them how to live life or proclaim myself to be an expert on anything. I may offer to try to interpret a dream now and then if they want. We seem to each enjoy the experience for what it is.

    Lawrence

  • erin321:

    Thank you. I was concerned this post might provoke hostile responses from some MIA commentors. I like to think that it hasn’t because maybe it struck a chord with them. But maybe it’s just that people who disagree with my views stopped reading my posts. After all, I don’t offer any alluring/sellable products like a “better way to cope” or a path to mythical “mental wellness”. I just try to understand reality’s unavoidable struggles and the different ways people adapt to them. My sense is that people understandably often prefer fantasy, especially if society authorizes/approves it.

    Lawrence

  • ablewriter:

    Good points. Please read my “Psychiatry’s 12 Step Program for Producing Heroin Addicts” article (and others) to see that I fully agree with them and previously discussed them. To keep my posts brief, I keep the focus narrow for each one, and thus omit other important factors which I don’t mean to minimize. And I will keep your feedback in mind about a more nuanced approach in future posts. Thanks.

    Lawrence

  • bcharris:

    An amazing “accomplishment” of modern psychiatry is that it’s been able to switch the public’s perception of “mental illness” from something that’s the exact opposite of physical illness – emotions/experiences for which, by definition, there is no organic cause and which thus cannot be “medically treated”, into a type of physical illness which thus is “treatable” by medical means. Would you consider reading some excerpts/reviews of Bernay’s book “Propaganda” to open up your mind to the possibility that you have been “successfully” manipulated?

    Lawrence

  • Physical activity is just one way of coping with life’s unavoidable disappointments. But thanks to the DSM, perceiving oneself as “suffering from depression” or “battling/having depression” is now another way to cope with them. This article is making a value judgment by saying one coping style is “healthier” than the other, and thereby supporting psychiatry’s medicalization of everyday life.

  • ebl:

    I did not mean that medication for hypothyroidism is wrong for you. If lithium permanently damaged your thyroid gland, resulting in your inability to produce enough thyroid hormone, then of course you need it. I was referring to how lately tens of millions of Americans are being quickly put on synthroid based only on an abnormal thyroid hormone level, often without a clear workup and definitive discovery of some underlying source of permanent damage to their thyroid gland as was found for you. I also believe that the threshold for what’s considered hypothyroid was changed in 2002, resulting in more people being considered hypothyroid. But I am not an expert in this area.

    Lawrence

  • Humanbeing:

    I am not putting all of the responsibility on psychiatry’s voluntary customers, just some of it. How are people supposed to resist psychiatric enslavement unless they are encouraged to acknowledge their free will, and to take responsibility for their own choices/lives? Promoting this is how we can defeat psychiatry.

    Lawrence

  • I am a doctor, and I can tell you that doctors do know. They just like quick, easy, guaranteed monthly income. Psychiatry has never been about “treating illness”. It has always been about permanently managing society’s outliers. When it started to not have enough of these “patients”, it ventured into turning normal human experiences into “chronic mental illnesses”, and into dealing addictive drugs, in order to recoup its lost clientele.

    The success of this business formula has been copied by “pain management” doctors, who also knowingly deal addictive drugs that turn transient pain into chronic/worsening pain, in order to create the permanently dependent customers which are their bread and butter. And the “hypothyroidism” you referred to is a similar way to produce eternal clients. Although levothyroxine isn’t physically addictive, if taken for too long, it causes the thyroid gland to “forget” how to make its own thyroid hormone, leaving the person dependent upon outside thyroid hormone. That’s why, when I went to medical school, we were taught not to rush in and treat abnormal thyroid levels unless they were very abnormal at several different visits, and accompanied by clear symptoms. That’s why thyroid hormone went from being a rarely prescribed to the most commonly prescribed drug. Before it became #1, vicoden was the most commonly prescribed drug for about ten years. For much of the ’80s it was xanax, and in the ’70s it was valium.

    I also believe that many people (but not all) who go on benzodiazepines know they are physically addictive (just as many people who drink alcohol heavily know that it’s physically addictive), yet are willing to take the risk anyway. I don’t know the explanation for this, but it has something to do with American culture, since we lead the world in virtually every category of legal and illegal addictive drug use.

  • Steve:

    Are you sure about that? How about all the people who supposedly do want “help” (are always asking for it), but really don’t, as evidenced by their resisting every single attempt to “help” them? Perhaps they’re content with being “helplessly mentally ill” and find that role so adaptive that they’ll never consider giving it up. To each his own. Some like rock, others like classical.

    Lawrence

  • But psychiatrists, while still torturing, chemically lobotomizing, sometimes killing, and incarcerating people involuntarily, have lately lured people into voluntarily going to them, not just via their lies, but also by similarly bringing money (lifelong disability benefits) and candy (euphoria-giving drugs), other rewards like sick/victim role status and excusal from having to work or raise one’s kids (parents can now sedate them and accommodate to them instead, without guilt), and identities which though some despise, others wear proudly like a badge of honor/courage. These “presents” may be key to psychiatry’s “success”, and likely motivate clients to believe all its lies.

  • Steve McCrea:

    The whole point of my article is that “mentally ill” coping tools do “manage” feelings just as “mentally healthy” ones do, so there’s no such thing as “healing”, and thus no reason to expect people to give up their “ill” coping tools in favor of “healthy” ones, especially since “mentally ill” coping styles nowadays confer many valuable sick/victim status rewards. For example, how many times have we seen fading celebrities regain their hero status by coming out with their “mental illness”? People’s coping habits wouldn’t have developed unless they worked for them, and they’d use their free will and adaptive brains to change them if they didn’t work. Assuming it’s “better” to be “mentally healthy” than “ill” would be like assuming certain types of music are “better” for you than others. So you are wasting your efforts trying to “help” people who don’t want your “help”.

    Lawrence

  • Oldhead:

    Of course “mental illness” is pure myth with no basis in reality. But to enable people to actually realize this and thus reject “it”, I talk about “it” in order to logically prove that it’s just a myth and explain why this concept evolved and was perpetuated by society. My main audience for my blogs isn’t the few people who already realize this. It’s people who are new to MIA, and those at MIA who reject psychiatry but still believe “mental illnesses” are real and can be “healed” by alternative methods that use the same business formula (creating eternally helpless/dependent customers) as psychiatry. My intended audience is the new generation which never heard of Szasz, and grew up being indoctrinated about psychiatry’s “great advances” in a culture in which “depression”, “ADHD”, “bipolar”, and other nonsense are firmly imbedded.

    Lawrence

  • It seems to me that people have a need for faith/trust in something greater than themselves which will look out for and take care of them. It makes sense that since science to some degree dethroned religion’s fulfillment of this function for many people, that science would then assume this role. That could explain why it doesn’t take much to dupe millions of people into believing and holding steadfastly to the illogical/ridiculous ideas put forth by psychiatry and big pharma (or any other sciency-sounding scams that ride their coat-tails).

  • Steffen:

    We all have beliefs not based in reality. It is purely subjective to say that some are “psychotic” and thus need “treatment/help”, while others are not. One could say that believing in “mental illnesses” is “delusional”. And how can any studies done about purely arbitrary, abstract concepts that are nothing more than value judgments with no basis in reality, be taken seriously?

    Lawrence

  • Steve:

    i did read “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance”, along with works by various other philosophers prior to starting psychiatric training. I never understood why we students entering the “happiness business” weren’t advised to study some philosophy before or during our training. Freud himself felt that the capacity for “free human insight” was crucial for a therapist.

    Lawrence

  • Steve:

    I thought a lot about your pointing out that I had no scientific evidence for institutionalization’s occurrence. I realized that not only do I have none, but that no pro- or anti-psychiatry theory, or even any psychological theory, will ever be scientifically provable, since not only is our field not within medicine, it’s by definition outside of the sciences as well. We only deal with arbitrary perceptions and value judgments. They’re mere concepts which we create, markedly vary according to the eye of the beholder, are constantly changing, and are only used in certain cultures. Thus, I can call you “crazy” since you disagree with me, and you can call me “crazy” since I disagree with you. So all hypotheses about such random, non-existent premises will never be testable.

    What we discuss should be within the humanities, since it’s more like philosophy. Trying to scientifically understand and explain abstract ideas like “depression” or “psychosis” makes no sense; you can’t discover the cause of something that only exists as a conceptual perception. This would be as ridiculous as starting with a premise that certain types of music/art are inherently “good” and others are inherently “bad”, and then trying to fudge together some “scientific data” to support your preferences. But perhaps even this is being done?

    Lawrence

  • Steve:

    The drugs in that release are also sedating. That can’t be just coincidence. The odds are astronomically against every single drug associated with cognitive decline coincidentally also happening to be sedating. There must be some connection -what could it possibly be? The odds are astronomically in favor of this being explained by the chronic sedation itself, by virtue of its continually preventing people from using their cognitive abilities, leading to gradual decline of those abilities. Use it or lose it. Thank you for providing more logical proof for me.

    Lawrence

  • Steve:

    You keep saying that the strong correlation of drug use with cognitive decline suggests that drugs damage the brain. But as I’ve said, adults who are on drugs can’t use their cognitive skills since their brains are too sedated to do so, so their cognitive skills will expectably gradually decline from continual disuse. And kids on drugs predictably won’t develop cognitive skills since they’re too sedated to do so. How could a chemically-impaired brain learn or remember anything? So there’s no need to theorize about direct biological causation (brain damage). It’s simple logic. Besides, there’s no evidence that psych drugs directly kill brain tissue.

    This reminds me of biological psychiatry’s claim that since “mental illnesses” run in families, they must be genetically produced. This completely ignores how kids emulate, mimic, and are taught coping styles by their families, so of course they’ll pick up traits that are part of their family culture. How could they learn ways of living other than what they’re exposed to? Again, no need to theorize about biological causation (genetic predetermination). Again, simple logic explains it. Besides, no “mental illness” genes have been discovered. I’m having deja vu all over again. Checkmate (That’s for Dragonslayer).

    Lawrence

  • Oldhead:

    From what I read, it’s thought that in TD the brain’s physiology is dysfunctional as a result of drug exposure, rather than there being actual tissue or anatomical damage. But I admit to not being that knowledgeable about TD; my blog focused on cognitive decline and weight gain. And the last thing I want to do is seem like I am minimizing how chronic sedative use ruins people’s lives. I’m just suggesting that they ruin lives via a different mechanism than is widely thought, one that may be at least somewhat recoverable from with patience and hard work.

    Lawrence

  • Dragonslayer:

    Please read the comment phoenix made at 8:38 AM today to understand my true views, since I think I haven’t made myself clear, and phoenix’s various comments do a much better job of it. And by “side effects”, I refer to effects on other parts of the body than the brain. Of course the shutting down of all thoughts/feelings/initiative/behaviors, or oppression, is the purpose of these drugs.

    Lawrence

  • Steve:

    Sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner. I’ll start with cognitive decline seen with chronic tranquilizer use, and brain damage: Equating the former with the latter is right out of biological psychiatry’s lying playbook – Psychiatry’s owes its “success” to tricking people into thinking that societally-disapproved-of feelings/thoughts/actions (functioning) are the result of defective/damaged brains (anatomy). The truth is that a healthy brain is capable of infinitely diverse types of functioning. So when the cognitive functioning of chronically sedated people declines over time, assuming this means that the sedatives anatomically damaged their brains, is incorrect in the same way. Our brains can acquire cognitive skills from practice, or lose them from disuse, as I lost my ability to speak Spanish from 30 years of disuse. Please look at phoenix’s comments above for better examples.

    Similarly, if someone gets more depressed after years of antidepressant usage, that doesn’t suggest that the antidepressants damaged their brains. It just implies that sadness is a normal human function that’s more likely to occur if people turn to placebos to “cure” their troubles, since their coping tools will thus decline due to years of disuse, and their neglected troubles will likely fester.

    When people wrongly assume that “abnormal” functioning equates with abnormal anatomy, then maybe it’s due to the false medical model having become so ingrained into our culture’s subconscious, that most people now believe/apply it without realizing it. But that doesn’t mean that they’re brain damaged to the point of being unable to think logically – it’s just an example of how all healthy people are capable of irrational thinking/functioning, especially if everyone else is doing it.

    As far as ECT damaging the brain, that’s different – putting high voltage electricity into brains clearly fries them. I think I remember seeing smoke coming from Jack Nicholson’s head while he was getting ECT in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. As far the autism epidemic being caused by antidepressants, that’s just one theory. I ascribe more to Marilyn Wedge’s idea that when babies/young kids don’t interact with their parents (and the outside world in general) since they and their parents are instead constantly engaged with virtual screens, and since they spend too much time in impersonal day care centers, then their learning how to bond/socialize will be stunted. As far as tics in stimulant users, that’s doesn’t suggest brain damage – that’s an expectable result of overstimulation.

    As far as tardive dyskinesias, no – I don’t think it’s from insitutionalization. The older antipsychotics clearly caused many horrible muscular side effects like stiffness, dystonic reactions, and TDs, as well as other awful side effects. As far as I know, there has been no demonstrated brain damage found to account for these side effects. It’s unfortunate that drug companies developed newer antipsychotics without these muscular effects, since parents are more willing to put their kids on them since they don’t seem as bad. Yet they’re just as sedating and thus just as capable of preventing kids from learning anything, and thus just as capable of resulting in adults’ loss of cognitive skills from chronic disuse of them.

    Lawrence

  • Oldhead:

    The distinction between functional and anatomical abnormality is not only huge, psychiatry’s wrongly equating one with the other is how it tricked millions into thinking that unusual thoughts/feelings/behaviors are due to permanent neurological/brain defects. It’s the whole basis of its false medical model. You can’t get any huger than that.

    Lawrence

  • Oldhead:

    The official definition of neurotoxicity is destruction/damage of nervous tissue, rather than effects on nervous system function. If you broaden it to include any chemical that negatively affects nervous function, then the list becomes endless, and of course will include all psychiatric drugs. I use the original, unbroadened definition. I believe that such broadening of definitions has been a major way that psychiatry (and modern anti-psychiatry) have misled many people to believe their situation is hopeless/helpless/permanent. As we all agree here at MIA, psychiatry’s use, or misuse, of certain words has itself influenced people’s thoughts/perceptions greatly, so we should be careful about how we use words that convey certain assumptions.

    Lawrence

  • Steve and Dragonslayer:

    The goal of this blog was to give hope to people. First psychiatry told them that they have permanently defective brain chemistry and hard-wiring, which make them incapable of managing their lives. Then they’re told this was a lie, and that in actuality their brains were fine before the drugging, but now the drugs have permanently damaged their brain chemicals and structure, suggesting once again that they’re incapable of managing their lives. So it’s the same learned hopelessness/helplessness message – that they should give up. Deja vu.

    So I thought – if it was a myth the first time, maybe it’s a myth the second time too. Maybe the brain atrophy that develops isn’t from drugs toxicly/irreversibly killing off brain cells from which there can be no recovery. Maybe it’s the result of chronic disuse, since zombified/institutionalized people are largely blocked from using their brains and bodies for years. And if this is the true explanation, then recovery may be possible by stopping the brain-blocking drugs and exercising/rehabilitating one’s long-dormant brain/skills. So excuse me for going against the grain by trying to be positive.

    Lawrence

  • Dragonslayer:

    i accused no one of apathy or weak will. I never said kids who experience sadness, which is 100% of kids (and adults), need therapy. And I never minimized the horrible short-term effects of neuroleptics, which clearly shut down people’s brains. I took a small dose of one during my training to see what was being given to “patients”, and tried to get the other trainees to also do it (they refused), and was basically unconscious for the next three days.

    But I challenge the idea that the long-term deterioration of neuroleptic-“treated” people is from direct chemical injury/damage to brain cells. Not only is there no evidence for these drugs doing this (as true neurotoxins do), but there’s no need to consider it to explain why their abilities (and brains) deteriorate, since it’s already been proven that disuse atrophy, or “use it or lose it”, is a fact of human physiology. I could speak Spanish well after four years of high school classes, but haven’t used it much since, and now, many years later, I can no longer speak it. Does that mean my brain was damaged by chemicals? No, since other abilities which I continued to use were not lost/forgotten.

    But someone who was basically unconscious due to neuroleptics for 30 years never had a chance to use any of their abilities, so all their abilities will of course become lost over time. Doesn’t that make sense? You’re willing to question so many myths which authorities proclaimed to be facts, so why not consider that the neurotoxic permanent brain damage claim, despite being promoted by most supposedly anti-psychiatry people, may also be a myth? And if it is a myth, then it’s serving the same oppressive function as the myth of mental illness.

    Lawrence

  • Julie:

    With all the money, government support, etc. that psychiatry has behind it, our only chance of defeating it is to pool our resources and work together as a team, rather than attack it separately in fragmented fashion. MIA seems to be the one place where all of us with this goal are contributing. They did publish one of your blogs recently, and although I didn’t agree with it, I agreed with most of your others. Your writing style is fantastic – you have made me laugh so much, and you are willing to analyze your motivations and be honest with yourself and your readers about them. You are also open to different ideas. You clearly have a lot to offer and teach. Please don’t give up on MIA.

    Lawrence

  • Dragonslayer:

    Anybody who says: “Antidepressants induce mania and suicidality in kids”, as opposed to saying: “When kids have false hopes built up by being given fake happy pills and being told: ‘You don’t need to acknowledge/address the real sources of your unhappiness since there are none – it’s just a treatable brain disease!’, then this can lead to their getting themselves initially high, but the higher the high, the lower the crash, and people can get suicidal when crashing from a high whether it’s self-induced by placebo effect or from a genuine upper”, is pro- rather than anti-psychiatry.

    The former statement supports the idea that unpleasant feelings and thoughts are the result of chemical processes, and that antidepressants can produce feelings/thoughts through their direct chemical effects. These are the two false tenets by which psychiatry has derived its power/dominance over society. They are the essence of its disease/medical model. Are there any modern so-called anti-psychiatrists that support the latter theory along with me? I don’t know of any. By supporting the former theory, they’ve joined forces with psychiatry, and you can’t beat something by joining it.

    Lawrence

  • Frank:

    The animal studies confirm that long-term neuroleptic use results in brain mass loss, but not that it’s through direct damage to the brain. These are two different things. Brain mass loss is more easily explainable as disuse atrophy rather than direct killing of brain cells, since these drugs have not been found to directly kill brain cells. Animals in these studies probably lay around and do nothing for years due to heavy sedation; thus most parts of their bodies, including their brains, will of course atrophy from disuse over time. And this is hopeful since our bodies, including our brains, can be strengthened via the opposite – active use.

    Lawrence

  • Julie:

    Very well said, and I really like how you use humor to get your points across. You should turn this into a blog here. You’ve helped me understand how so many ways of living that people in the work world take for granted, are eliminated and replaced by completely different ways of life in the institutionalized world that are incompatible with success in the work world. Even those who weren’t institutionalized but just took a year or two off from work, for example to raise their kids, nowadays find it extremely hard to catch up with how dramatically things changed since they left due to the non-stop technological innovations.

    Lawrence

  • phoenix:

    Very well said. Your comment not only conveyed what I was trying to say much better than I was able to, but also conveyed the thoughts/feelings that go on in the mind of one who was institutionalized that make it so hard to recover from. I wish I had read it before writing my blog. I hope that many others read it, and that maybe you write your own blog about it, since it could help so many people.

    Lawrence

  • deeeo42:

    That’s precisely the point of this blog – Back in the 60s and 70s the anti-psychiatry movement, and Americans in general, sought psychosocial explanations of human experience, one being institutionalization. But no longer. Since Prozac, the biomedical model has become so accepted/ingrained into our culture, that both pro-psychiatry and anti-psychiatry people now try to explain everything through “defective brain chemistry”. Today’s anti-psychiatry movement may thereby be helping more than harming psychiatry’s dominance. We’ll be more likely to steer people away from psychiatry if we instead rediscover true anti-psychiatrists from the 60s like Szasz (The Myth of Mental Illness), Goffman (Asylums), and Laing (The Divided Self), who refuted rather than endorsed psychiatry’s medical model foundation.

    Lawrence

  • Oldhead:

    My blog questioned the assumption that tranquilizing drugs actually directly cause permanent neurological (brain) damage through toxicity. There has been no evidence that these drugs directly kill brain cells, which is the actual definition of neurotoxicity; you won’t see them in a list of neurotoxic chemicals. They may just turn the brain off each time they’re absorbed into the brain, in the same way that turning a light switch off prevents you from using a lamp, but doesn’t damage the lamp, which can later be turned back on and work just as well. But unlike a lamp, when people don’t use their brains for long periods due to institutionalization and chronic sedation, their skills become steadily lost from disuse. This can explain the atrophy often seen in their brain scans. This happens to most body parts not used for long periods – for example, muscles also atrophy from disuse.

    But just as muscles can be re-strengthened by using them again, people can re-learn lost abilities by using their brains again. So the term “neurotoxic” has been stretched to include temporary sedation, which misleads people to assume that sedatives directly cause irreversible brain damage. This needlessly deters them from trying to get their brains back into shape, by wrongly implying it would be futile, and thus does the work of psychiatry for it by keeping people “lobotomized” even after they’ve stopped their sedatives.

    Lawrence

  • Richard:

    There has to be some difference in degree of victimhood between someone who has their freedom forcefully removed by involuntary commitment and forced drugging (or someone who goes to school and gets shot by someone with an AR15) on the one hand, and someone who voluntarily seeks medical “cures” for their life struggles and then voluntarily continues this path despite their life getting worse, on the other hand. And inversely proportionate to the degree of victimhood there must be some degree of responsibility/choice. Psychiatry is all about fooling people into thinking that they have no responsibility or free will, so that they will helplessly submit to it. So by your insisting that people don’t have any of these capabilities when in reality they do have some, you are being pro-psychiatry, and you are encouraging people to not challenge themselves and to not reach their potential. I am being anti-psychiatry by refuting psychiatry’s false premises, and by encouraging people to not give up on themselves. So how about switching over from psychiatry’s side to my side?

    Lawrence

  • Uprising:

    So I shouldn’t search for the truth, and shouldn’t explore alternative explanations that offer people hope of turning their lives around and reaching their potential, out of concern that they’ll feel slapped in the face? I logically argued that deterioration from long-term tranquilizer use isn’t from direct/permanent brain cell damage, which is the socially-accepted idea that maybe you could question along with me. I showed how it’s better explained by a decline in abilities by the brain having been turned off for so many years, that people eventually forget the skills they once possessed due to disuse of them. I then provided evidence for actual brain atrophy being a result of such disuse, just like muscular atrophy resulting from their long-term disuse, rather than being directly from drugs “frying” them. Isn’t this a rational explanation for why only tranquilizers are associated with brain atrophy? Besides, there’s no evidence that psych drugs, despite putting people into stupors, directly kill brain cells as genuine neurotoxic chemicals do.

    Lawrence

  • Oldhead:

    Thank you. Maybe the response was partly due to my being somewhat unempathic/abrasive in this blog, and I’m sorry for that. But as Knowledgeispower pointed out, in other blogs I had already consistently held psychiatry to be largely responsible, and I still do. Thank you also, knowledgeispower. As far as the negative reaction to the idea that people can overcome their circumstances, perhaps this is an example of the typical negative reaction people have to different, non-socially accepted ideas. After all, not just psychiatrists, but even many of today’s “anti-psychiatrists” promote the opposite idea. But I’ve been around long enough to know there was a time when the idea that people were capable of healing was mainstream. And judging from your moniker, you probably also remember that time.

    Lawrence

  • Richard:

    There have always been, and will always be harsh experiences in all societies, partly because man’s nature is often harsh. I have no strong views on how best to prevent this. But at least if people are aware that unpleasant emotions/thoughts aren’t brain diseases but are cues that something’s bothering them that they’re capable of working on, they’ll be more likely to effectively address it. I do have a strong view that medicalization of such experiences, which has lately been promoted by both psychiatry and anti-psychiatry camps, has become so widespread in America that it’s the biggest threat to our society’s survival. I suggest we all focus on this before it weakens America any further.

    Lawrence

  • Jonell:

    Thank you for your feedback, which certainly made me think. I want to clarify four things: When I said “my authority”, I didn’t mean that to be taken literally; I was being sarcastic, hence the italics. I am totally against people trusting any authorities, especially psychiatrists, which was the main point of my article. When you mentioned my referencing “genetically-impaired brains”, did you think I believe this lie? That’s the total opposite of what I believe, as I discussed in prior blogs. And this article was only about voluntary “outpatients”, not involuntarily-committed, forcefully-drugged ones. I can’t begin to imagine how permanently traumatizing/damaging such experiences would be, and am glad that many have discussed them here at MIA. Finally, of course I agree that psychiatry’s lobotomizing drugs are harmful; my focus here was on alternative explanations of why people who take any psych drug long-term, not just the zombifying ones, invariably deteriorate and have such trouble coming off them. I am sorry for offending you.

    Lawrence

  • John, Steve, Richard, Dragon Slayer, etc.:

    Here’s where I’m coming from: I am thinking for myself about why we feel, think, and do what we do, and inviting others to also do so. I am rebelling against psychiatry’s medical model, which is society’s way of suppressing such free/independent thought by blaming everything on “bad brains”. The “anti-psychiatry” movement of the past 25 years is actually pro-psychiatry since it also blames brain chemistry, so of course it’s failing. So I am trying to form a splinter anti-psychiatry group that instead promotes thinking outside the medical-model box, as not only the great thinkers of the 1900s who I referred to did, but many other psychologists, philosophers, and sociologists since Greek times did as well. We can only defeat psychiatry by breaking completely free of its pseudoscience zombiehood which has taken over our culture, and rediscovering our ability to reason logically, as these people did.

    Instead of buoying psychiatry by promoting more helpless medicalization by saying: “Antidepressants can induce suicidality in kids”, let’s promote independent thought (psychiatry’s enemy) by saying: “If instead of listening to and understanding your kids and helping them learn to capably address whatever problems upset them, you build up their false hopes by saying it’s due to a disease that can be treated by miracle pills, you’re setting them up for disaster”. This approach may not be as popular since it’s somewhat unflattering of human nature. But helping people think about and face the truth, rather than just telling them what they want to hear (that they bear no responsibility whatsoever for their troubles or for addressing them), will help them take back freedom/power over their lives. So who wants to join me?

    Lawrence

  • Some anti-psychiatry people inadvertently promote the medical model’s lies about free will, by blaming “treated” people’s violence solely on chemical reactions caused by their pills. That excuses them from any responsibility/choice for it, which scares me, since nearly 20% of Americans are on psych drugs. It could make some people feel it’s okay to give into their violent urges, since they can get away with it by blaming it on their pills.

  • humanbeing:

    The last thing I would ever do is tell people what they should do. “To each his own” is my motto. I think you misinterpreted what I meant, which is that everyone who contributes to this website has already been using their abilities to help others avoid the mental health system, which I consider very worthwhile. The more people who join us in contributing, the more success we will have in this goal, especially if we work together as a team.

    Lawrence

  • All the people such as you who are contributing to this website, are using their adaptive brains and free will to play a valuable role in improving our society, and thus are not as permanently damaged/disabled as they think they are.

  • Philip:

    Great job using logic/reason to refute everything Dr. Pies said. It must be tough for people like him to do public relations for a field that’s purely about deception, illogical thinking, and parasitic harm. At least the fact that psychiatry is doing such public relations shows that we’re starting to get the truth out there, enough for it to need to go on the defensive.

    Lawrence

  • JanCarol:

    Yes, conditioning is integral, and conditioning involves rewards. This brings us back to psychiatry rewarding the relinquishing of free will with victim status (attention, sympathy, and evasion of blame/responsibility), euphoria-giving drugs, and economic security. I believe psychiatry owes much of its “success” in getting people to embrace helplessness to such unconscious conditioning, most of which continues even after clients discontinue “treatment”. I believe this is the real “elephant in the room” which must be acknowledged and addressed if we are to successfully slay the dragon of psychiatry.

    Lawrence

  • I believe it’s largely due to their having become “institutionalized”, in a manner similar to how people who are incarcerated in psychiatric hospitals or jails for long periods, and are thus unable to exercise their free will for long periods, have difficulty adapting to life in independent, free society. This is the formula by which psychiatry produces eternally dependent customers, and partly explains why people continue to have troubles long after stopping their psych drugs.

  • I believe that one reason for psychiatry’s “success” is that many people seem to not want to accept that they have free will, or seem to not want to take responsibility for exercising it. And once people choose to voluntarily relinquish their free will to an authority such as psychiatry (and its medical model), it seems that they’ll be unlikely to ever take it back, even if at some point they reject psychiatry.

  • The DSM’s “mental illness” criteria were intentionally made so subjective, vague, flexible, and common that everybody could fit into most of them, in order to lure/trap everybody into permanently handing over responsibility for their lives to doctors. Once you’ve had that “Aha” moment in which you say: “Now I know why I sometimes get anxious or panicky – it’s because I have an anxiety/panic disorder” or “Now I know why my son doesn’t pay attention – it’s because he has ADHD”, you know you’ve been reeled in. You can’t go back in time, but at least you can join us in warning others not to make this mistake.

  • Sami:

    This is an excellent summary of the many ways in which “ADHD” is pure fraud. I have a metaphor to demonstrate its ridiculousness: Imagine if your car wouldn’t start, and your mechanic diagnosed it to be caused by “CNSD” (Car Not Starting Disorder), which, he confidently explained, makes it hard for cars to start up. Although it sounds pretty impressive, you would probably suspect that he is just covering up that he has no idea why your car won’t start up.

    We have more trust/respect for doctors, so we tend not to question their explanations, and thus are more easily fooled by their official/scientific-sounding labels. Perhaps some parents are easily fooled since they want an excuse to tranquilize rather than raise their kids, due to not having the time, energy, or patience for this. It’s justification for sedation. And it allows parents to evade any blame for their kid’s failing to become mature/responsible, since it wasn’t their fault, but merely “symptoms of brain disease”. Telling people what they want to hear has been very lucrative for psychiatry.

    Lawrence