Thursday, December 13, 2018

Comments by Frank Blankenship

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  • When I was in school they were calling “manic depressive psychosis” a rare genetic based “disorder”, but since the view that some children thought to suffer from “ADHD” actually had “bipolar disorder”, the population of people labeled “bipolar” has surpassed that of the population labeled “schizophrenic”, and, in fact, is now more than double the “schizophrenia” rate. How did this happen? I don’t know, but any day now now, researchers inform us, they are going to have identified the mutant gene behind it all.

  • Another interesting stat, 69 % of the people who took the survey said they were on the psych ward for depression. Maybe they should not be taking things out on themselves, but should be turning their anger outwards towards the government. A government that, while claiming to represent the people, only represents a small elite segment of the population, and certainly not that large and growing number of sad people who find themselves confined to an institution. If people are sad, perhaps it is due to bad governance rather than bad *cough* genes.

  • I don’t see this “survey” as being particularly conducive to “abolition”. Wish it was. I see it as conducive to selling psych tortures.

    Let me make a few points as to why. 66 %, a full 2/3s, claimed to be satisfied with their medication. Okay, that wasn’t my percentile group, feeling at home with the chemically tortured. 62 % didn’t think they experienced “unjustifiable” abuse in an institution. 46 % would recommend emergency hospitalization (sic) for an “unwell” friend. I don’t see how you can recommend it without approving of it. Add to that the 16 % without reservations, and psychiatric imprisonment is here to stay. 32 %, almost 1/3, thought hospital (sic) admission saved their lives. 46 % spent only from a week to a month in the hospitally loony bin thing. Add that to that the 38 % who spent under a week on the wards, and you’ve got well over 2/3s covered.

    Sure. We need to get rid of this sort of thing, but it’s not going to happen with a survey. The survey just sweeps up too many of the recently psychiatrized (newly medicalized) in its wake. Enough with the yes men (and yes women). We need a larger and louder crowd of “no” votes. Down with psychiatric tortures. You can dump the lot of them into the trash bin. Most of us know they should be redundant by now, after so many hundreds of years, and I can hear Captain Picard in the background saying, “Make it so.”

  • I would imagine that some of the bipolar disorder, so-called, in adults is not exactly the frenzied activity of exceptional brains. When recreational drug use disturbs normal cycles of activity, of sleep and wakefulness, when people use uppers and downers regularly, it’s bound to have a major effect on all aspects of their life. Celebrities, occasional prone to receive a diagnosis of “bipolar disorder”, are also known to use recreational drugs liberally wherever such resources are flowing freely. Self-medication aside, if anti-depressants aren’t very effective at containing depression, I would doubt that a combination of uppers and downers are going to do the trick any better. Mess yourself up on drugs, uh, I mean develop “bipolar disorder”, and, wouldn’t you know it? Doctors think they have a drug for that.

  • I wouldn’t give him ECT. ECT used to be used primarily as a control mechanism. Today it is used in the “treatment” of depression. A “man who feels his guts are rotting, the devil is after him and hears the voices of demons” sounds like a man who is terrified. He is also a person who shouldn’t be subjected to ECT merely because of his fears. If it weren’t for the sedatives given before ECT, ECT, as in the old days, would be a terrifying experience in itself. These sedatives don’t make ECT a safer experience, they just knock the patient out so he doesn’t know how traumatic the experience he just went through was. Any other available treatment alternative is preferable. The remedial effects of ECT are identical with the effects of serious trauma to the brain. There are many questions to begin with about the long term effectiveness of ECT, and head trauma is not likely to clear this man’s thinking up, long term or short term.

  • Reform, eh? Is that more restrictions and human rights violations, or less? Legislators, in their eagerness to pass forced treatment laws, restrict human behavior, and curtail civil liberties, think they are for reform, too. When it comes to deprivation of liberty, and other human rights violations, I kind of think we need to go whole hog (i.e. abolish them). In other words, although a lesser wrong is better than a more serious wrong, a lesser wrong is still a wrong, and something that I would like to see corrected, not excused. Reform is an excuse for harm, that is all, the only argument, if the argument is reformist, concerns the matter of level or degree of harm perpetuated. Abolish harm, and then you’re talking.

  • The underground railroad IS a way out of the clutches of the loony bin. As for “alternative”, that includes anything and everything but forced treatment. Get rid of the force, and none of it is “alternative” any more. We don’t need any “alternatives” to force, we need to put an end to the use of force instead. Are more options better? Not necessarily, but cultivating a hobby, for instance, is probably preferable to ruminating in a broom closet.

  • “Crash pads” for “getting heads together”, sure, that’s one way to look at it. Unfortunately, that’s not what you get. Mostly, people “wind up getting worse” because “treatment” is based on false premises, mainly that there is some kind of disease at work on the subject. Psychiatric intervention, like military intervention, is a hostile act. I think people would be better off without the “mental health” system all the way round. Abolish forced psychiatry however, and the only complaints would be coming from people who did “seek” “help”. I’d like to remind you that some of us were prisoners of the system, and not its welcome guests. Ending the “insanity defense” would close one loophole in accountability here while ending forced treatment would close the other. Then, if you’ve got complaints, in the final analysis, you’ve only got yourself to blame for them. A system that “needs alternatives” to itself is a system we should get rid of. “Alternative medicine” is, generally speaking, a form of quackery, except in psychiatry’s case, where what’s offered as mainstream treatment is quackery.

  • Huh, and re-huh. “Tough love” is usually punishment masquerading as affection, isn’t it? Had we affection masquerading as punishment, that would be something else, wouldn’t it? My only point is, in this instance, if you think that in this ‘director’ guy you have caught another Harvey Weinstein, I don’t think so.

    I don’t see this as some matter that would be frowned on in a capitalist setting but smiled at in a socialist one. Martyrdom, in the sense of eternally delayed gratification, is a hard way to go, and sometimes it can get excessive.

  • One could consider any and all sexual relations as examples of “sexual exploitation”, except for the fact that they aren’t. We hear that a “therapist” claimed to be reprimanded for having had sexual relations with a “client”. We don’t know that he “exploited” her. Such, at any rate, is my interpretation, although perhaps the “director” at this time might have shown better judgment by leaning on his first amendment rights rather than treating Will as if he were a priest in a confession booth. In such situations, the less said, the better, unless one is interested in doing serious damage to one’s career. As for coming clean, if anyone has a lot to come clean about, it’s going to take a whole lot more than a confession.

  • Get rid of forced treatment, and you’ve quickly fixed much of what is wrong with the “mental health” system. The question remains, why imprison innocent people in the first place. In the name of health? You’ve got to be kidding. I’m imprisoning you to protect you from yourself and/or other people. Really? Not if I have anything to do with it.

    Life is a risk people should be allowed to take.

  • Prostitutes (or should I be saying sex workers?), too, but I’m hardly against career changes. I recognize “mental health” workers of all sorts as state bureaucrats, and, frankly, that’s why I wouldn’t be one in the first place. I doubt it’s in the best interests of your client when you act as an agent of state managed social control, and so what I’m really objecting to is this sort of conditional emotional investment, and the silly arrangement it produces. There are just, other silly arrangements, that I consider more beneficial.

  • Business obligations are about self-interest, too. With regard to “love” as “punishment”, or where it is “forced”, in what we call “rape” and “assault”, I’d be in agreement. Outside of that, I prefer due process, something prisoners of the “mental health” system don’t get, over character assassination. Given due process, your suspect is innocent until proven guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt. Should such a professional amateur mismatch produce another mad psychiatrist or mad psychologist, I would hope not to be too prejudiced against the subject myself.

  • I see physical harm as more of a problem than any sort psychological innuendo or presumed personal fragility. The power differential nobody is denying, and I’m certainly for doing something about that as it is 100 % behind the totalitarian nature of forced treatment. I just don’t see any virtue, nor power for that matter, in this neutering of the subjects of the therapeutic state. Members of the professional class, and those they are bound to by study, custom, or habit (“provision” or whatever), are not different species, unable to cohabit and breed. Treating them as such is harmful and insulting.

    We were speaking about “love” recently in commentary on a different post by a different author. I certainly was never one to confuse “love” with the “therapeutic” tortures I received, however, I am not ruling out “love” as a matter for discourse. This definitely brings in the question as to motivation when it comes to both professional service provider and his clientele, the service consumer, or user. I don’t know to what island the “lover” has been exiled, in your book, but apparently, you and I are not going there, are we, Richard?

    I simply don’t think the infantilization, de-humanization, and sub-humanization of the “mental patient” by legal and “mental health” authorities very helpful to achieving human rights for the human being in the “mental patient” role, and the loony bin trap. Not all “mental patients” even, would want to be consigned, or condemned even, to screwing only among their own maligned, marginalized, and dis-empowered populations. I have to ask, in some instances here, who is giving and who is taking?

  • I disagree unless your client is a minor.

    We could also be dealing with the case of a client “taking advantage of a therapist”, except in that case, the matter would, after Freud, be called “transference”, would it not?

    I always had a problem with the circumscribed and bracketed unreality of therapy, set apart from real life, and I still do. I don’t see a great deal of benefit in treating grown people like children, and, in fact, I see a lot of harm developing out of doing so.

  • I don’t really care if the therapeutic play of this couple carried over into their sex play, or vice versa. That’s their business, not mine. I don’t think every relationship involves one predatory individual taking advantage of an innocent and naive patsy. Some relationships are a matter of two people taking advantage of each other.

    I think there is a big difference between priests molesting children and being protected by the church and two adults, with emphasis on adult, getting involved in a relationship. I don’t buy the current “adult child” nonsensical narrative that is being sent down the line, and as such, I think people should be able to make their own decisions.

  • Okay, and so if one has an intimate relationship, one must drop the professional relationship, and vice versa? What does that do for “love at first sight”, or even at “second sight”? I don’t have all the answers, but I do know, as they say, s***t happens.

    I don’t think this taboo of yours (i.e. the given present patient doctor dichotomy) was such as it has become today.

    Carl Gustav Jung, if you’ve seen the movie A Dangerous Method (2011) is known for having had a relationship with one of his patients, or former patients, and a future psychoanalyst herself, Sabina Spielrein, but perhaps it was actually after the professional relationship had dissolved that the intimate one began. Regardless, life can get messy. Provided, of course, the engine turns over at all.

  • I’m not really good with setting boundaries myself, preferring to get past them. I guess that makes me something of a dinosaur.

    I’m not in the mood for a witch burning, even if the witch we’re talking about burning happens to be a witch doctor.

    I’m not a big one for the ‘confessional mode’ either, and with that, there goes the entire therapy industry out the window.

    Sexuality is ALWAYS going to be a sensitive issue. If one is going to blow the whistle on anything, I’d want it to be on something more important than some minor sexual indiscretion or other. I simply think, if you’re going to destroy a person’s career, there’s got to be a better reason for doing so than somebody’s injured pride.

  • “Flakes of infinity” are fine and dandy, up to a point, and that point is the point at which you have to say, to quote Bertolt Brecht, “Grub first, then ethics”. “Wha-what?! Are you saying there is a limit to the virtue received through contemplation of my navel?” Yes, I think there is a limit to how beneficial contemplation of a navel might in the long run turn out to be.

  • True enough.

    I just think anybody who had done any thought on the subject would have thought long and hard before making opioids a drug of choice. Apparently some peoples, and peoples in important positions at that, thinking apparatus is off. Should they have lost their positions of authority over this break in their thinking devices. I would think that one wouldn’t have to think so long and hard over the subject as one might over the prescribing of these dangerous and addictive substances in the first place. As result of their faulty thinking apparatuses, we have people dead and dying that otherwise wouldn’t be dead and dying.

  • I kind of think all efforts to talk psychiatry to death are doomed to failure from the get go. Basically, it ain’t gonna succumb to talk.

    I also don’t happen to go along with the “abolish psychiatry” slogan in particular. If you’re going to ‘abolish psychiatry’, you’re not going to do so without ‘coercion’, and I’m against coercion.

    I would see psychiatric oppression, that is, coercive psychiatry, abolished. No contradiction there. Psychiatry is only a problem because of its propensity to treat people who don’t want to be treated. Get rid of that power, and psychiatry would no longer be treating people against their expressed will and wishes.

    When psychiatry can’t treat people who don’t want to be treated, when it no longer operates prison camps, what is the problem? All anybody who doesn’t want to be treated has to do is say, “no”.

  • I hold doctors responsible. It is now doctors who are the primary suppliers of opiates, not parents. We’re talking prescription drugs. Parents are only going with the flow. Doctors should not be pushing drugs that are more deadly than they are beneficial. This goes back to what I was saying before. You already had the 1914 law, and then you fashion a way around it. That’s asking for trouble. What are they teaching them in school? What it seems they are not teaching them is that opium, and opium derivatives, or drugs that act like opium and opium derivatives, are not drugs they should be doling out like candy. We already went through this matter in the nineteenth century, and I guess, at this point, we have to relearn the lesson of the early twentieth century.

  • You had the 1914 law for a reason. Opium and opium derivatives used to be considered legit medicine. Now we’re supposedly trying to forget why that law was put on the books in the first place. Opium is potentially deadly dope. We’ve got what is referred to as an opioid crisis now. Why? In the 2000s what happened early in the 20th century is apparently a lesson we have to learn all over again. Widening the definition of ‘opium den’ just doesn’t cut it.

    Doctors wouldn’t be becoming such unscrupulous drug distributors if they had been taught better in medical school.To re-frame the problem, basically, amphetamine and opiates are drugs, not medicine. Ditto, alcohol. You’re going to have to go a little light on the pain killers if it is not the patient you want to kill.

  • Pain doctors knew what they were doing, didn’t they? Circumvent the Harrison Act, done with the Drug Addiction Treatment Act, and you make a bundle. The mafioso possessed the same sort of knowledge, only in their case, illegality can up the ante. Illegal, or legal, addictive substances are profitable. Outlaw fentanyl, and the mob is back in business. Actually, you don’t even have to outlaw it. It’s so addictive that if they get their hands on it, stacks of money grow. Now that medical doctors have become major drug distributors, that’s got to give a body pause for thought.

  • Mad, maybe?

    I’m not bashing righteous rage.

    As for credibility, is the anger that comes out of personal experience any less credible than many of those little scraps of paper framed and hanging from office walls that we call credentials? The stuffed shirt and nameplate is credible with the credibility that comes of class privilege, status, custom, and excessive bullshit. He or she also, btw, has the potential to be a major impediment to constructive change. I’m also tipping my hat to any con artist that can expose those con artists of conventionality and the status quo for the frauds and hucksters that they actually are.

  • Antipsychiatry can’t die. Phoenixlike, it is always going to be reborn from its own ashes. As long as coercive mistreatment goes by the name of psychiatry there will be a place for antipsychiatry. As long as psychiatry has it’s bug-a-boo, antipsychiatry, it will be something we can throw in its face, it will be a way of defiance. Should psychiatry stamp out the flame. One more dry stalk is dangled in the wind waiting for a single spark to rekindle the raging fire. As long as people demand compliance, the resilient resistance of antipsychiatry will be a physical need, and a need that is not going to ever fizzle out entirely. As long as psychiatry is unfreedom, antipsychiatry will be freedom. You can’t stamp that out. It is something that is going to come back again and again and again. It will keep coming back until it is triumphant. If psychiatry must kill the spirit, antipsychiatry is the spirit that it is trying to kill, but although you can kill the flesh, you can’t kill a spirit. Try, and that spirit is going to haunt you to the end of your days.

  • Proof? A fish with lungs isn’t proof?

    Fish are evidence. Fossils are evidence. Legs are evidence. The vanishing vestigial tail of the fetus is evidence.

    Why? What did they say about Everest? Oh, yeah. Because it’s there.

    Why aren’t fish in a constant process of evolving? Well, in relation to other species, some that made their way to land, some that started on land, and returned to the water, fish are kind of slow.

  • Yes, OldHead. Britannica has it’s points, but it is not everything, and there is a place for the voice of the people, too. There is a place even for those people who are not the “established authorities”.

    Well, should the “mental patients’ liberation movement” ever wish to evolve from the “consumer movement” back into itself, Wikipedia is not going to prevent it from doing so, and Wikipedia could even be of assistance if anyone chose to use it in that capacity.

    Birds are dinosaurs. Avians evolved from theropods. Without theropods, no avian acrobatics. It is not like dinosaurs have left us. Birds, if they are not dinosaurs, are literally the direct descendants of dinosaurs. Homo sapiens can’t make the same claim.

    Healthy skepticism is one thing, but there is a point where “doubt” becomes “unreasonable”. The evidence of your senses is there for you to behold. I will leave it at that.

  • I don’t know, OldHead. It’s a big leap from a frog to a human, but I myself am kind of glad it has been made. Sure, evolution takes a long time, but just think where we might be without it. Excuse me, you wouldn’t be able do that without a brain, would you? Sorry.

    “Ancestral characters are often, but not always, preserved in an organism’s development. For example, both chick and human embryos go through a stage where they have slits and arches in their necks like the gill slits and gill arches of fish. These structures are not gills and do not develop into gills in chicks and humans, but the fact that they are so similar to gill structures in fish at this point in development supports the idea that chicks and humans share a common ancestor with fish. Thus, developmental characters, along with other lines of evidence, can be used for constructing phylogenies.”

  • I think it had more to do with possibility 2 [climate change + catastrophic interstellar collision] than possibility 1 [a failed experiment (too big)]. Dinosaurs were the most successful creatures on earth at the time of their extinction, and, thus, as far as experiments go, they wouldn’t qualify as failures. Dinosaurs roamed the earth for more than 150 million years, and, btw, its only been 65 million since they’re departure. Oh, all except birds, of course.

    The origin of frogs, on the other hand, predates that of both dinosaurs and birds, going back to before an even earlier extinction, that of the Permian age, nearly 300 million years ago. What can I say? That’s success for you, baby!

  • Ahem. Anthropology is not the field you should be looking into, paleontology being that field. Paleontology, and….zoology.

    Reverse genetic engineering and the fossil record both demonstrate that birds are modern feathered dinosaurs, having evolved from earlier feathered dinosaurs within the theropod group, which are traditionally placed within the saurischian dinosaurs. The closest living relatives of birds are the crocodilians. Primitive bird-like dinosaurs that lie outside class Aves proper, in the broader group Avialae, have been found dating back to the mid-Jurassic period, around 170 million years ago. Many of these early “stem-birds”, such as Archaeopteryx, were not yet capable of fully powered flight, and many retained primitive characteristics like toothy jaws in place of beaks, and long bony tails. DNA-based evidence finds that birds diversified dramatically around the time of the Cretaceous–Palaeogene extinction event 66 million years ago, which killed off the pterosaurs and all the non-avian dinosaur lineages. But birds, especially those in the southern continents, survived this event and then migrated to other parts of the world while diversifying during periods of global cooling. This [bird diversification] makes them the sole surviving dinosaurs according to cladistics.

    Emphasis added.

  • I read, because of interbreeding, most Europeans are about 2 % neanderthal. Neanderthal was another species of human. Neanderthal had been around longer than modern man has been in existence but neanderthal went extinct. Hopefully the same fate doesn’t await us, at least, not before perhaps a further evolutionary leap has been achieved, and our species has a successor. A successor beyond the rats and cockroaches anyway.

  • Well, as stated, bacteria are evolving into antibiotic-resistant variants.

    I believe there is a sort of frog that glides through the air by way of its webbed feet. You don’t get that sort of thing without evolution.

    Also, birds evolved from dinosaurs. Dinos went extinct, but birds are still with us.

  • How many people define psychiatry as “trauma denial”? I think most psychiatrists are going to disagree with that definition, and when it comes to the “trauma informed” tag, I imagine that there are psychiatrists who would call their form of “care” “trauma informed”.

    If you can’t sell treatment for sadness as treatment for “disease”, maybe you can do so as treatment for “trauma”.

  • I don’t think the end of evolution, for Darwin, was humanity, by any means. Darwin was a scientist, not a humanist.

    I think the evidence for evolution is abundant. We refer to it when we speak of fossil evidence, or the fossil record. We know now, for instance, that some of those big bones that turned to stone belonged to gigantic reptiles rather than to human giants or to dragons, both creations of mythology.

    Meglodon teeth were thought to be petrified dragon tongues until Danish naturalist Nicolas Steno recognized them as sharks teeth sometime in the 17th century. Guess what? Nicolas Steno was right. They weren’t, and they aren’t, petrified dragon tongues.

  • As much deceit as exists in the “mental health profession”, OldHead, and you’re talking about the “credibility” of the person who “identifies” as “seriously mentally ill”? I don’t really think “credibility” and ‘dishonesty’ make a good mix.

    Sometimes a person might need “recovery” from their family, and then who is there to “save” said person? Certainly not the “mental health professional” hired by the family to adjust their errant member to some sort of bondage.

    Brain health, LittleTurtle, is not arrived at through brain damaging drug usage and electrical shocks. Now whether it can be arrived at through family counseling is another matter that would require further research. I’m just very skeptical about any research results that suggest “counseling” on top of brain damaging drug usage and electrical shocks equals a healthier brain.

  • Some people have issues with the word “antipsychiatry”. Other people have issues with the word “mad”, especially when coupled with the word “pride”. I myself have no problem using either word. I don’t have any problems using the words “psychiatry” and “unimaginative” either.

    At a more practical level, I’m not cleaning up my speech, the concept of “pro-psychiatry” can be a problem. We have another word for “pro-psychiatry”, and that word is “medicalization”. “Medicalization” is what you might call “a break with reality” on a massive social scale.

  • Forced treatment should be abolished, however, if you’re going to “detain” people against their will and wishes, a no drug treatment option should be provided. Ditto a no shock option. No amount of information is going to make drug treatment or shock treatment harmless procedures. I can’t say for sure that I know what “voluntary” treatment in these cases means any more than I know what “informed consent” means. What does it mean? We made a “plea bargain” and we handed somebody a printed form to sign? You watch TV, and on TV you get a string of ads, drug ads, and these drugs ads are followed by a listing of adverse effects, that seems to drone on forever, but the idea is to get people to be mesmerized by the ad, and to tune out the adverse effects. Nobody is even saying, here, you shouldn’t take these things, but since you’re going to do so anyway…. No, they’re going to be saying, read the print out, and then do what you will. Honesty would mean saying, straight up front, this is a drug nobody should be taking long term, and if it’s a drug nobody should take long term, maybe it’s a drug people shouldn’t even be taking on a short term basis. I just wonder and worry about the number of times “informed consent” might mean “misinformed non-consent”. We know some treatments are supposed to be harmful, but still, you’re hoping to get a “sane” person out from their usage in the end. When it comes to weighing risks versus benefits, somebody could still be tampering with the scales.

  • I don’t see mad as a label. I don’t see it as an insult. It’s kind of like that saying somebody came up with, “Black is beautiful.” Mad is beautiful, too.

    Basically, what I didn’t say is what the “mental health movement” says today, that is, mad is not a scientifically valid term to be used for people who are “sick”. Mad has morphed from something closer to “bad” into ill and ailing.

    When mad is not…mad:

    The disclaimer was, in my view, a necessity. Sure, it was satire. I was joking, but somebody, duller than you, of course, might not get the jest.

  • “Mad” is not a label. Directed at pathetic “sick” individuals who have not the capacity to see to their own needs, nor understand their conditions, “mad” is an insult. The “mental illness” industry objects that it is no longer “politically correct”, nor feasible, to use the term, as people are no longer “mad”, they are “mentally ill”. They actually have “brain diseases”. Just like “crazy”, just like “lunatic”, etc. According to the “mental health” police and their hired goons, “madness” is an insult. We’re talking about “sick” people here after all. Watch your language, OldHead, you know how people get “triggered”.

    Disclaimer: the above views are not those of the person making the comment.

  • Most terms in the lexicon dealing with psychiatric conditions are variants, in the etymological sense, of a way of calling an individual “sick”, possessing “ill health”, and, in that fashion, seeing ‘disturbed’ as ‘diseased’. Madness, on the hand, having been coined prior to the development of the medical model, originally meant changed. I don’t have a problem with that definition in particular. I do though have an argument with efforts to change people back into those people their community, friends, and relatives, etc., were more familiar with through drugs, electric shocks, and other destructive tortures. Mad, in this instance, is a way of responding with a measure of pride. Sorry, folks, but your changeling is here to stay.

    Oh, what a boring world we’d have if everybody were the same! I see Mad Pride as a reason to celebrate our differences, and thus, a cause célèbre. You’ve got little reason to conceal your difference. I’d say, when you can flout it, and flout it without being locked up for doing so.

  • In the states, psychologists want, and in some cases, are being granted prescribing privileges. Not all psychologists, mind you, but some. The claim is that there are too few psychiatrists in rural areas, and so psychologists have to assume part of their role. The system is a problem, surely, but I would be a little wary of any psychology against psychiatry argument. Mostly the two professions are completely in cahoots.

  • Yes. Psychiatry is just a ten letter word. Take the word “insanity”, for example. “Insanity”, although etymologically it means “unwell”, is not a medical term, it is a legal term. Psychiatrists were not born with the power they wield, it was granted to them by state legislatures. You get rid of the profession of psychiatry, and those state legislatures will merely assign the same power they’d granted to psychiatry to another profession. The problem is not psychiatry. The problem is psychiatric power. The problem is not that we have mental hospitals, the problem is that these hospitals are only figuratively hospitals and that they are literally prisons.

    You say that psychiatry is coercive by nature, and that all psychiatry has to be, to some extent, coercive. I say that is nonsense. Psychiatry is coercive because it has been granted certain powers above and beyond other professions by law. You get rid of the profession, but you don’t do anything about the “bad law”behind the power, and that power will merely be granted to another profession. Undue force is the problem, not psychiatry. You get rid of force, and psychiatry can’t touch you without your consent.

    I’ve seen lives destroyed by psychiatrists assisting the courts in ruling people incompetent. With such a ruling you, in effect, render a person a non-citizen, demoted in status to that of a child or a subhuman. This is not a power I think anybody should have over people who are, in all other regards, adult. If you get rid of the profession, and you don’t do something about that power, you’ve done nothing except change bosses.

  • We get the same arguments in the USA. Fact: psychiatry is killing people. Fiction: psychiatry is saving lives. The numbers don’t lie. As I see it, psychiatry is very destructive to human existence, and this makes antipsychiatry a very positive thing. As for the science, what science!? There is no reliable test that has been able to prove the existence of any “mental disorder” whatsoever, and the search for the “mad gene” is coming up relatively empty. They’ve got their bullshit manual, but it’s a bullshit manual, and it’s come under fire from all directions. You get a rosy picture from these psychiatrists about the science of the brain, and the discoveries that they are going to be making any day now, but they are still stumped by the same questions they were asking 100 200 years ago. Psychiatry is deeply embedded in the system of general health here in the USA, too, but that incorporation is a scandal, much to the detriment of medicine, that we keep exposing over and over again. On the one hand you’ve got real medicine, and on the other, you’ve got unreal medicine, medicine for people who aren’t “sick”, but wish perhaps they were.

  • If psychiatric assault, just like other forms of physical assault, were illegal, then you wouldn’t need an alternative to it since standard practice would no longer be a matter of assault. The problem with “alternatives” is that they’ve let human rights violations and deprivation of liberty in through the side door. Get rid of forced treatment, and you won’t need “alternatives” to forced treatment. Duh. We don’t need “alternatives” to forced treatment, we need to put a stop to forced treatment.

  • I do see myself as antipsychiatry and I think using the word is one good way to thumb one’s nose at the mental illness and the pharmaceutical industries as well as the stupid people who get tangled up in their subterfuge and devious marketing schemes. Where I disagree with you, OldHead, is that I think the problem is force, legally sanctioned through legislation, and not the profession of psychiatry itself. When it comes to fighting forced treatment, I think your position misses the mark as much as that of the “alternatives” movement which is so compromised by collusion and a major contributor to medicalization, if “alternative” medicalization. If one talks about reform, in the mental health system, that talk is all about more force or less force. Talk about abolishing psychiatry is somewhere outside the ballpark whispered in some trashy back-alley and completely off the table. Abolish forced treatment, and you’ve got no force being applied to make people prisoner patients against their will and wishes. Collaborate with the enemy, or engage in conspiracy theorizing, and forced treatment remains. I see you and the “alternatives” people, who care only about government funding, as working together to keep force in place. When it comes to human rights violations and fighting psychiatric oppression, I think the movement needs to focus more on fighting oppression, and less on fighting psychiatry, feeling, unlike you, that the two terms are not of necessity synonymous.

  • Thank you, Peter, for all you have done for those who are being threatened with death and injury through the legalized drug trade.

    This age, particularly hard in its whistle blowers, hopefully will be succeeded by another. What is the problem? Obviously, greed, immorality, and corruption. (If everybody wants to be a member of the 1 %, you’ve got nobody to apply the reins to the 1 %, and to hold the 1 % in check per se.) You let people get away with murder, and there’s no end to it, unless we call an end to it. The drug companies in league with the mental illness industry have been killing people with abandon for some time now.

    What is needed? I don’t know. Maybe a Whistle Blowers Union that could take on corruption in general.

  • I have a little problem with this “special gene” theory as well. It reminds me of “the great man theory”. Alexander earns the moniker “the great” through a hostile take over of all these independent nations. Julius Caesar comes along, and says, “that means there are people specially endowed to rule the world. People like me.” Caesar gets his just deserts, but the empire rolls on, until the barbarians anyway. Napoleon comes along, and says, “The revolution is over! Hail, the new emperor!” Traditional monarchies object, and take him down. Hitler comes along, and says, “I’m the man particularly endowed to rule all the nations of the world.” Anybody sense a pattern here?

  • I do not see many people beyond you, OldHead, holding the same view as you. As a victim of forced psychiatry, my issue with psychiatry ends once the force is abolished. Going any further would be overkill. I think you have a simplistic and unworkable formula. Blame everything on psychiatry, and see the solution as it’s demolition. Basically, I don’t believe psychiatry is to blame for everything, nor do I believe that life would be a bed of roses if it were abolished.

    MIA was never a specifically antipsychiatry website and organization, only OldHead would expect it to be one. I know that many people feel underrepresented at MIA, and I can understand the reasoning there, and the feelings involved. I also understand that it has provided some people with an antipsychiatry perspective a voice on it’s site, and for that I, for one, am grateful. I think it is up to antipsychiatry movement activists, antipsychiatrists themselves, to form the organizations and develop the internet presence specifically devoted to antipsychiatry. As such, the responsibility doesn’t fall on the shoulders of Robert Whitaker and the MIA board in any event. It falls on the shoulders of those people who identify as antipsychiatry, or who claim to be part of the antipsychiatry movement.

  • So-called precision psychiatry, and there is nothing precision about it, is not a paradigm shift.

    I don’t see it as a “blind alley” though, not unless it is “consumer/users” and the general public that are being blinded. If they test people’s responses to drugs, you’ve got a method of making more people compliant, and thus, duping and doping more people. The problem, obviously, is that this also means more drug induced injury, ‘disability’, and death.

    If you’re looking for the precision part of it, maybe it is really precision social control that they are after. Polish our deceptions, and we’ve got more people following us like lemmings.

    1. It’s not a paradigm change.
    2. If the problem is not “bad genes”. Assuming that the problem were “bad genes” is a false basis to work under (i.e. an error).
    3. Even if “mental disorder” were, as I heard somebody say once, 70 % genetic, that would leave 30 % to social, psychological, or other causes, and I imagine there is no basis for the 70 % figure anyway except that it would make the “disorder” more biological than not. In other words, the figure is entirely arbitrary, and only given because it supports the theory.
    4. The research on genes, as you’ve shown above, doesn’t support the theory. If genes have little to do with the development of “mental disorder” then they have much less to do with the development of “mental disorder” than many people presently presume.

  • Another of MIA’s missions apparently is to provide a voice for mental health professionals. Right now, I don’t think it has ever been resolved as to what an antipsychiatry stance might actually consist of. All sorts of people disagree when it comes to what they call psychiatry, and some of us have disagreements as to what we’d be calling antipsychiatry. BTW, OldHead asked us about abolition, and I consider my answer a raised hand. I can’t quite make out yours though.

  • I wouldn’t expect MIA to be a leftwing journal any more than I would expect it to be a sounding board for the antipsychiatry movement, but there are people here, such as myself, who are decidedly of the left, and who have little use for psychiatry, or the system that sustains it. There are also people associated with this site, and users of it, who are psychiatrists, mental health professionals, or who work in the system in one capacity or another. MIA never sold out. MIA was in another space from the beginning. As long as it let’s people with different opinions sound off here, I don’t see what the problem can be. If you want an antipsychiatry movement sounding board, or a leftwing rag, make one, but expecting MIA to be favorable, as a rule, to your particular bias, is just expecting a little too much.

    I’d like to see some action, too, and that’s why we need to organize. If we had our own site, and our own organizations, then we could be planning and initiating political actions of our own as well. I couldn’t see expecting MIA to be the instigator of such, but there are people here, you’re talking to one of them, that would be more than willing and eager to help get that kind of thing up and running.

  • Educating the general public, and consciousness raising, are always important. I’m not a big fan of psychotherapy, but if it worked by directing anger outward at the sources of oppression, sources such as neoliberalism and privilege, rather than inward, on the presumption that a deeply flawed individual needed moral correction, that would be an improvement. The faults, as a rule, reside in relationships rather than individuals, and it is, if anything, our ways of relating that need to change.

  • Great sensibilities, but psychotherapy as political education? Sure, seeing as people are not getting that education in other, neo-liberal controlled, venues. Could become a little dull though. There is something to be said for having fun, too. I just don’t think any of this is as disruptive of neoliberalism as one would suppose. I tip my hat however to any psychotherapy that would be about politicizing people, and especially those who have been marginalized.

    “Psychotherapy under neoliberal capitalism can be characterized by an inherent contradiction.” Nope, I don’t think so. “On the one hand, psychotherapy can be one of the key means of spreading and reinforcing neoliberal ideology and thus advancing the interests of finance,” LaMarre writes.” No doubt. “On the other, it can unsettle the capitalist political order by cultivating subjectivities that disturb the primacy and normalcy of the free-choosing, entrepreneurial self (this, of course, does not mean that therapeutic conversations can entirely escape neoliberalism).” Correction. “On the other,” neoliberalism has an escape valve. Neoliberalism THRIVES on un and under employment, no disruption there. It’s just another instance of the masses feeding the rich.

    You’ve got a long way to go to mount any serious challenge to neoliberalism, but politicizing the down and out is a good start.

  • I can’t see abolishing psychiatry without abolishing forced treatment. Psychiatry sees itself as a medical specialty, a branch of “medical science”, even if it actually is a police science, or pseudo-police science, pretending to be a medical science. Abolish psychiatry without abolishing force, and you’ve only changed management, or, you know, bosses. This represents a problem when the “alternatives” “peer” “recovery” dizability whatchmacallit so-called movement is way too compromised to fight for human rights and against force any more. They are, to speak bluntly, working with the enemy. If we are to be freedom fighters, then we need to be working for freedom, and not waste our time chasing another version of ‘pie in the sky’.

  • Propaganda doesn’t make a person a prisoner. I’m saying that there are people who go to the shrink’s office, or get into treatment programs, not because they were involuntarily, or even plea bargain “voluntarily”, committed to a facility. Sometimes they get into things just to see what’s going on. You’ve mentioned John Lennon before. John Lennon and Yoko Ono did the primal therapy thing with Arthur Janov. Good thing, bad thing, I can’t say, but the album John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band, his first post-Beatles solo venture, came out of it.

    I can’t say I had it as good as you did. I was driven by family members to the hospital, and admitted. Only after I got out did I see the shrink in another capacity, and I can’t say that was entirely pleasant either. After a few trips to and from the loony bin, I was in outpatient treatment, and I regularly, quarterly or yearly or something like that, did the 20 questions thing with a shrink. “Do you hear voices?” “You know that kind of thing that got you into trouble. You’re not going to do it again, are you?” And so on.

    I don’t see that psychiatry and the mental health system equate. Get rid of psychiatry, and you will still have the mental health system. Get rid of the mental health system, and you may still have psychiatrists, but the worst of what they do will be over. This solution to social problems that they’ve got going, grabbing, what is it? 20 % + of the population. Well, it isn’t really working. In some instances you’ve got people making a living on “bad outcomes”. Who needs that!?

  • Government bureaucrats, business people on a short fuse, family members, law enforcement, the drug industry, psychologists, social workers, nurses, ward staff of all sorts, grunts and groans, psychiatry could do very little without all those subordinates in some, but not all cases, who work and collude with it. I mentioned the court system previously, if it weren’t for the import politicians and judges have granted psychiatrists they wouldn’t have nearly the power that they have today. There is an entire psy-complex that extends well beyond the profession of psychiatry itself which you ignore at your own peril.

    As for ideology, if you mean bio-psychiatry, not all psychiatrists subscribe to it, and it is something that could be subject to change given undeniable evidence and public pressure. I don’t hold this view of yours that all psychiatry is the same, especially not when that dissimilarity means putting some innocent people in harms way, or defending them from such.

  • I’d say that the mental health system is the real enemy, and what friends and allies we’ve got are outside of, and beyond, the constraints and confines of that system.

    Less mental health treatment means more mental health. The real problem is that mental health treatment endangers physical health, and if you want to stay physically healthy, which in turn facilitates what we call “mental health”, you will get away from the entire mental health treatment paradigm.

  • The chief difference between my position and that of OldHead is that I’m not so much antipsychiatry as I am anti-mental-health-system. Psychiatry in itself is not the problem, psychiatry is only a problem because psychiatrists have been granted so much power over other people’s lives. Get rid of that power, and psychiatrists are just like everybody else.

    The mental health movement is behind much of the expansion of the mental health system today. It is not really a mental health movement at all, instead it’s a mental health treatment movement. It is, basically, a medicalization movement, and medicalization involves calling matters that are not medical medical, and offering medical “treatment” to people who are not “sick” in the slightest, although, some of them might be said to be errant or lost. The system itself just represents another cul de sac, and thus, insult added to injury.

  • Psychiatric expertise as seers (i.e. people in the know about whether this person or that will do harm to themselves or others or not in the future) is no better than that of the ordinary citizen. This is the problem with bringing psychiatrists into the courtroom. It is the courts that are colluding with psychiatry in granting the profession this privileged status. It is, frankly, not about rights, the acquired rights of psychiatrists negating the unacknowledged rights of their victims. It is about power saying, in a sense, tread lightly lest you stir up a hurricane (initiate proceedings that lead inevitably to tragedy.)

    The problem, you see, does not begin and end with psychiatry, and getting rid of psychiatry won’t get rid of the problem. Why? You’ve got the courts, you’ve got the families, you’ve got related professions in the mental health camp, you’ve got hired goons and grunts, and all of these people, and psychiatry, are working together, and closely together at that, to keep other people down and out. Blame everything on psychiatry, and if you ever did succeed in getting rid of it, something else just as creepily oppressive is going to rush in to fill the recently vacated power vacuum.

    It should be obvious to anyone who looks deeply into the matter that something more sinister than the provision of adequate medical care for physically “sick” people is taking place here in the mental health realm. It is folly (unwise) to use state legislatures and the legal structure to try and outlaw folly, but that is what has happened. What do we get out of this vain effort to put folly permanently to rest by banishing it from existence on the street, in the shop, in the hallway, and in the office? Basically…the mental health system. Wisdom is not something that can be forced on people. Wisdom has more to do with knowing when not to intervene than it does with interfering with the natural course of spontaneous events.

  • I don’t see any point in arguing where David Cooper WAS coming from. I just think our movement might have been a lot more accommodating to psychiatry without him and people like him. Part of the reason behind these arguments stems from the animosity Thomas Szasz had towards R. D. Laing. Couple that with his antipathy for left-wing socialism, and you’ve got Antipsychiatry: Quackery Squared in a nutshell. I just see the likes of Jeffrey Lieberman, Ronald Pies, E. Fuller Torrey, Allen Frances and the larger portion of the APA establishment as being much more problematic than that of a renegade like Ronald Laing ever was. Alright, so now Szasz, with the publication of that book, has increased the ammunition for the opponents of the critics of psychiatry. Fine, fire away.

    I see only one way of abolishing psychiatry and that’s by outlawing it. Were psychiatry like the institution of slavery, it would be much simplified. Slavery is wrong, do away with it. The problem here is that some people freely seek psychiatry, and don’t have it imposed upon them from the outside. As long as that is the case, I can’t see abolishing it. I would abolish forced mental health treatment, forced psychiatry. I would do so by outlawing it. (If mental health law were repealed, it would be outlawed.) To my way of thinking, forced psychiatry deprives people of liberty, and I wouldn’t want to deprive people of liberty. It is enough to abolish forced treatment, and with it, psychiatric oppression. I can’t see the virtue of any drive to abolish the profession borne of the revenge motive, that is, what occurs when some people who have been deprived of their liberty wish therefore to deprive others of their liberty. I just don’t get the idea that you would know when to stop once you had started down the path of depriving people of their rights. Once we start in that direction of forcing people, I imagine it could come back around to having force applied to you again.

  • Everybody is not a mental health police officer. I don’t have a problem with anybody’s chances for becoming a mental health police officer going down the tubes.

    I think there would be much fewer people “disabled” by the system if we had fewer mental health police officers. Hey, that’s an idea! Depopulate the mental health system by de-funding it. Funny if in the process of doing so, you also enabled many people supposedly “disabled” by the system.

  • R. D. Laing rejected antipsychiatry. Psychiatry (psychoanalysis) was his bread basket. He wasn’t into the antipsychiatry thing at all . David Cooper, if he didn’t coin the term, revived it.

    You are saying that David Cooper’s brand of antipsychiatry is false, and OldHead’s brand of antipsychiatry is true. You are also saying that the Thomas Szasz brand of psychiatry is closer to your brand of antipsychiatry than David Cooper’s brand of antipsychiatry. I’m just not sure that follows.

  • You embrace the term, too. Thomas Szasz didn’t embrace the term. So, are we to assume that you are a better antipsychiatry activist, or antipsychiatrist, than David G. Cooper?

    I dunno. I embrace the term, too. I just wouldn’t assume that I am a better antipsychiatrist than you or David Cooper.

    Thomas Szasz wanted to disassociate himself from R. D. Laing and leftist fellow travelers on the continent. Fine and dandy, but he was still a psychiatrist, and as such, by his own accounting, a fraud.

  • Laing and Cooper, OldHead, were not joined at the hip. R. D. Laing and D. G. Cooper were two separate entities who actually split over the issue of anti-psychiatry. R. D. Laing would not refer to himself as anti-psychiatry. He called the anti-psychiatry movement “a movement on paper”. David Cooper, in the end, claimed not to be a psychiatrist, and he said he was promoting non-psychiatry. A chapter in his last book, The Language of Madness (1978), is titled “The Invention of Non-Psychiatry”. Laing, at no time that I know of, stated clearly and definitively that he was against forced treatment. With David Cooper, on the other hand, the situation is a little less clear, and as he died in 1986, I wouldn’t expect it to become any clearer with the passage of time, however, I would not be filing him under psychiatry.

    Psychiatry is defined as the branch of medicine dealing with the study, treatment, and prevention of “mental illness”. If, as Thomas Szasz claimed, “mental illness” is nothing more than a figure of speech, then all psychiatrists are quacks, by definition, and anti-psychiatry, in so far as it is seen to practice any form of psychiatry (psychoanalysis included) would be guilty of an even greater fraud.

    This leaves us with the problem of the etymological definition of psychiatry as “soul healing”. Obviously, somebody’s science has spilled over into their religion, or vice versa. Being an atheist, I don’t buy the “soul healer” line. Knowing that psychiatry is pseudo-science, I don’t buy the science angle of it either.

    If psychiatry is defined in any other fashion than it has been, you have the problem of reconciling that with the meaning of the word itself. Were it conceived of as counseling troubled people, for instance, why the medical degree together with the medical pretenses that go along with that piece of paper?

    Antipsychiatry being opposition to psychiatry, I don’t see that any such contradiction exists there. Psychiatrists go inside the psychiatry office space, antipsychiatrists stay outside of the psychiatry office space (and brackets). Abolish forced “mental health” treatment, and, the key word here being “force”, they won’t be able to force their pseudo-scientific religious views and practices on you or anybody else. They certainly won’t be able to force such views and practices upon any person against that person’s expressed will and wishes.

  • I don’t like it either. I think it is false. I don’t like the idea that some people can’t “provide” for themselves, and thus they must be “provided” for. What it does is “privilege” the “providers” over the “provided for”. I don’t think it has been adequately demonstrated that they are completely incapable of “providing” for themselves.

    An entire service industry has sprung up around “providing” for the homeless, but note, what is being “provided” isn’t, as a rule, affordable housing. Why? You make sure everybody has got housing, and it’s going to throw all these service “providers” out of work. Now you’ve got several service industries that depend for their existence on people not being employed. Employ them, and these service workers would have to get real jobs. As long as their clients are un or underemployed, your service worker has a career. Employ them, and the hoax is up, your parasite loses, with its host, its reason to exist.

  • Neurobabble, as if anybody thought it wouldn’t, has reached a new low. Neurobabble, somebody’s answer to psychobabble, is equally offensive. The idea is that neurology is more scientific than psychology, however, if we attach neuro to psychiatry, as has been done, you can begin to see the problem that has developed. Quasi-medicine embraced medicine, and there aren’t enough bladder bags in the world to prevent medicine from embracing quasi-medicine, before enough time has elapsed, that is, to be struck with the error of its ways.

  • Yeah, whatever. I’m not trying to win any prizes for so-called ‘political correctness’.

    Physical is real. Psychological is next of kin to metaphysical.

    I don’t really think anybody can prove ‘psychological’. People can prove physical though, but that’s only because physical manifests itself through the evident. Science, in any event, isn’t about proving, it’s about disproving.

    I’m just saying, in some instances, the proof of “can’t do-it-ness” is deficient or lacking, and contrary to what the facts would suggest.

  • Gotta fall back to Thomas Szasz on this one, OldHead, and Szasz bringing in Karl Kraus, his anti-Freud.

    “I have done nothing more than show that there is a distinction between an urn and a chamber pot and that it is this distinction above all that provides culture with elbow room. The others, those who fail to make this distinction, are divided into those who use the urn as chamber pot and those who use the chamber pot as urn.”

    ~Karl Kraus

    Anti-Freud: Karl Kraus’s Criticism of Psychoanalysis and Psychiatry (1974), Thomas S. Szasz

    Abolish means get rid of. If you don’t abolish it, you don’t get rid of it. Do I take it that you, by this insistence, have arrived at a way to cling onto things that you would “abolish” while claiming they are “abolished”? Sounds kind of evasive to me.

  • I mean we’ve got people to help when bodies get injured, but when social standing is “injured”, well, then the matter becomes much more sticky and complex. The question then becomes, whose side are you on? The side of that which all too often gets described as “the human condition”, or the side of “social justice”?

  • “Head” or “brain trauma” is one thing, OldHead, “psychological” or “emotional trauma” another. Until evidence comes in that says otherwise, and concrete substantive evidence at that, the first instance describes actual trauma, and the second instance describes fictive trauma. Of course, anyone can easily ascertain that there are innumerable fictive doctors out there that are very actively engaged in endeavoring to “heal” folk of their fictive traumas.

  • This article is giving the issue a certain spin. The two dead women can’t speak for themselves so the people who would be speaking for them put this together. What we’ve got is another lame piece of “mental health” movement propaganda pushing an agenda. They’re still out to hide the facts of the matter, that is, that what we’ve got here are not medical patients but prisoners, in many instances, unwilling prisoners.

  • Allen Frances is too hung up on this argument of using the moderate approach. Even when he was debating Thomas Szasz his position was that the “mental illness as myth” position was extreme. I guess he’s found out that mainstream psychiatry’s pathologizing and drugging of everything is another form of extremism. Presently, he feels he’s taking on the fanaticism of Donald Trump and his supporters. He doesn’t feel that the Donald needs labeling, drugging, institutionalization, and our pity though. I guess because it would be extreme to label an elected official a “danger to self and others”, however, it would not be so extreme to label any homeless body snatched from a park bench a “danger to self and others”. If he had a motto, I think it would be, “Do no harm in excess. Harm in moderation, on the other hand, that’s okay.”:

  • Anti is a prefix meaning against. Antiwar, antifascist, antipsychiatry, etc., I’m surprised that we would even be having this discussion. Notice that I start with the definition of the anti before proceeding to the term it is intended to oppose. If you are against something, alright, this is the thing you are against. Most importantly, authoritarian is autocratic while anti-authoritarian knows that you’ve got a lot of fools holding the reins to power. Democratic was the synonym used for anti-authoritarian. More than democratic, anti-authoritarian tends to be non-hierarchical, and, in many respects, sees change as coming from the bottom up rather than from the top down. Sometime the guard (the status quo) has got to change, anti-authoritarians are there to give it a little push in that direction.

  • I know I’ve read about it in more than one book of recent authorship although I couldn’t exactly tell you which books. I will mention one. Robert Whitaker himself tells the story of the hunger strike in a section of Anatomy of an Epidemic under the subheading Lessons from a Hunger Strike, pg. 333-334. MindFreedom hit upon this great idea of utilizing dissident professionals in this particular political action, and because of that, it has had an effect that has extended beyond the user/survivor community. MFI was challenging the science, and to do so, it helps to have scientists behind you.

  • Counterproductive and non-productive are pretty much the same thing, OldHead. Were we to have a strike, we would not be producing a product. Were we being counterproductive, then, it would be some other bodies who were contributing to the GNP, not us.

    Yeah, but the Grouch statement was such, with all those meaningless words, as to imply that he doesn’t disagree while he’s disagreeing. Qualifying “I do not disagree with you.” with “I cannot say” is a way of being politic, isn’t it? And politic is a way of being less than truthful.

  • If we had the numbers, we don’t have the organization. Organization is a part of putting those numbers to use. Hopefully, in the future, we can begin to put a dent in organized psychiatry (the APA has 30,000 plus members) through organized antipsychiatry. I would think, not requiring medical degrees, or even college educations, might make it a little easier for us to organize, and with organization comes the kind of momentum and leverage that you don’t achieve through widespread disorganization, confusion, and non-focused non-engaged non-action. Practicality, here, at least, means something.