Sunday, December 8, 2019

Defining Anti-Psychiatry

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  • #56897
    Witiman
    Participant

    Personally, I don’t think there is a classic anti-psychiatry.

    Of course there is just look up any definition of anti-psychiatry and refer to David Copper’s work. You can also read Robert Whitaker’s book Mad In America.

    Nor do I see any validity to the argument that “mental illness” exists. It’s rather like arguing that Jesus Christ exists.

    If you try and argue that mental illness doesn’t exist then you have to continually make nonsensical arguments making it a ludicrous position to hold. Even worse is that in the hypothetical situation where psychiatry is replaced by the Szaszian nonsense then mental illness and mental disability don’t exist meaning that unless you can hold down a full time job you will be sent to an unofficial madhouse and subjected to unofficial psychiatric treatment that will be more torturous than any psychiatric therapies you have ever received. Meaning that your support for Szasz is insanely suicidal.

    Mental illness is as real as computer viruses and the criminal justice system. You mention Jesus Christ, who represents many religions based on fiction rather than science, and, as it is merely an imitation of the real thing like a fake gold bar, one can readily use it as yet another example of the existence of mental illness. Scientology is another similar example.

    Computer viruses are malicious codes.

    Right on computer viruses can be made of malicious instructions and data (thoughts and information), and the offensively malicious or criminal aspect ensures their classification as diseases.

    They are not diseases in the sense that viruses that invade the human body are diseases.

    Of course not as they are mental rather than physical diseases meaning they don’t invade the body they invade the wit.

    In the second instance, both the body invaded, and the creature doing the invading, are living organisms. In the first instance, one is an instrument of technology, and the other is a code for operating that technology, and neither one of them are living creatures.

    Humans are organic machines meaning the main difference between a human wit and a main frame’s wit is that one is organic and the other is artificial and the same applies to the difference between a computer virus and mental illness in humans.

    I’ve got another question for you. What is the difference between the physical universe and the metaphysical universe?

    The physical universe is exactly that. There is some confusion in the correct interpretation of the word metaphysics. Does the prefix meta- modify its stem in a similar fashion to metatheory (a theory about a theory) or metadata (higher level data that describes lower level data) to mean to a type of physics as metaphilosophy is to philosophy, or does the prefix meta- contradict its stem to mean non-physical. As metaphysics includes cosmology and cosmogony it clearly does not refer exclusively to the non-physical. Further “Since the beginning of modern philosophy during the seventeenth century, problems that were not originally considered within the bounds of metaphysics have been added to its purview, while other problems considered metaphysical for centuries are now typically subjects of their own separate regions in philosophy, such as philosophy of religion, philosophy of mind, philosophy of perception, philosophy of language, and philosophy of science”(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metaphysics). As the philosophy of the mind is no longer a metaphysical pursuit I don’t imagine that you can interpret metaphysics as referring to the non-physical which I think is what you are trying to do.

    Although diseased wit and diseased thoughts belong to the metaphysical universe, your diseased computers have managed to make the physical universe.

    You have made an error by trying to classify diseases of the wit as a metaphysical issue. Similarly you have made another error by trying to posit that computer viruses are physical diseases. Both diseases of the human wit and diseases of the artificial wit (computer viruses) are mental constructs that have underlying mental origins and pathologies.

    Alice In Wonderland, Alice’s Adventures Through the Looking Glass, and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders are obvious nonsense. You apparently give more credence to one of these volumes than it deserves.

    No, I agree that they are all fictional contributions.

    #56898
    Witiman
    Participant

    OK I’ve been trying to be diplomatic but Witiman, your posts are inappropriate for this discussion and I strongly suggest that people start to get in the habit of not engaging with posters who are in violation of the spirit of this forum. I’m starting to agree with Ted that Witiman is posting here as a provocateur.

    This thread is titled “Defining Anti-Psychiatry” and all of my posts are polite, informative, and on topic therefore you are making obviously false accusations.

    Witiman, once and for all, the anti-psychiatry threads in this forum are meant primarily to discuss HOW to abolish psychiatry, not WHETHER to abolish psychiatry. The purpose is NOT to devise a better, more “scientific” form of psychiatry.

    I have only ever outlined and supported the classic Cooperian form of anti-psychiatry which seeks to overthrow the psychiatric system (physical etiologists and physical therapies) in favour of a system which focuses on using mental treatments to remedy the underlying mental pathology involved in mental illness (mental aetiologists and mental treatments) which is also the view outlined by Robert Whitaker in Mad In America. Meaning that you appear to be fighting against the views expressed in Whitaker’s book or simply that you are now anti-MIA. Further I have never once written a single comment in support of the psychiatric system or attempted to promote a neo-psychiatric model. I challenge you to demonstrate otherwise. If you are unable to do so I also ask that you retract your libelous comment that I am trying to devise “a better, more “scientific” form of psychiatry”.

    #56933
    travailler-vous
    Participant

    Frank, Slaying the Dragon, Oldhead learned a lot from you here, but pleased enough just to see the state of your own views in devlopment. My position for how change of minds and social actions can effect consciusness raising correspond very much to Frank’s when it comes to picking your battles and taking sides and deciding how it happened to work out. My practical focus in making anti-psychiatry speech take effect usually has to do with the fact that I keep in mind who in society I naturally like and want to see do well. Moms and Dads who look out for their kids, and other people who wisely let the kids in on the fact of their knowing that that’s what they see about their parents, too. That’s the demographic mental health functionaries target for their ideas of normal, too, pretty much. But their lives are anything but as narrow and operationalizable as mental health science will ever admit. And once you get to the status of ongoing practices nothing is right. Nothing stops anyone or ever did with a license from setting up a complete refferal system for helping people get, easily, their diagnosis restructured and actual help with switching to lower doses, less toxic and unpleasant drugs, lower doses; also tips and ideas for how to try self-medication vacations and to just try having varieties of drugs to try and talk over with other users and their prescribers, for keeping around for PRNs. What is Anti-psychiatry and what can it be, and how can it back or serve to identify a movement? You’ve got to read up and compare notes. Nothuing simple about a name. As for the fact of its historical use, the twist in that is seeing that every academic professional type of formerly called bourgeois is not happy to rest with broadly humanistic worldviews and some thoughtful uptake of what science gives you the right handle on. They want special treatment for all like themselves and control of the intellectual rights. Nowadays worse than ever they actually control the whole climate of debate about rights and freedom and power, and it is precisely a deadly labyrinthine investigation ahead of you for finding out which ultimately benign-seeming folks could put the brakes on evils like forced treatment detentions, tardive dyskinesia and ECT, psychosurgery plannings…oh, just anytime.

    #56938
    Frank Blankenship
    Participant

    Witiman, David Cooper may have coined the word when it was a neologism, but that doesn’t mean he had a monopoly on the meaning. He meant psychiatry that wasn’t biological and medical in slant. There is no reason for us, and especially those of us with no vested interest in the psychiatric profession, to have such a restricted focus.

    When it comes to the “existence” of “mental illness”, we have several technical issues to resolve. First, I’m waiting for your proof that there is any such animal. Without such proof, there is no sense in arguing about whether it exists or not. Without proof, you don’t have anything, at least, not anything that is scientifically verifiable.

    You’ve been arguing for “mental aetologies”, Witiman. That’s metaphysics. There is a reason why psychiatrists don’t make the same argument as a rule. Metaphysics, being in the main philosophy, eludes scientific query. Scientific query, on the other hand, involves that which is measurable (i.e. that which has a physical existence).

    Prior to the modern history of science, scientific questions were addressed as a part of metaphysics known as natural philosophy. Originally, the term “science” (Latin scientia) simply meant “knowledge”. The scientific method, however, transformed natural philosophy into an empirical activity deriving from experiment unlike the rest of philosophy. By the end of the 18th century, it had begun to be called “science” to distinguish it from philosophy. Thereafter, metaphysics denoted philosophical enquiry of a non-empirical character into the nature of existence. Some philosophers of science, such as the neo-positivists, say that natural science rejects the study of metaphysics, while other philosophers of science strongly disagree.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metaphysics

    Computer viruses aren’t viruses in the sense that real viruses are viruses. Computer viruses are, like intelligence, in some instances, artificial. Artificial involves artifice. In other words, it only resembles the real thing.

    #56939
    travailler-vous
    Participant

    The poiint about how MIA is pro-patient advocacy, as that’s the way it lists toward a position antipathetic to anti-psychiatry themes for defining the survivor movement agenda, an important one. Most of the alternative-minded careproviders and many survivors who claim recovery status and subsequently take on work in the field have numerous capitulatory stances regarding what kinds of coercion they think saves patients and affords them outcomes for their own good. Almost no one but Hickey and Moncrieff go into detail about types of hegemonic influence over perceptions and realities that affect patients and their life opportunities, influence that revolves around psychiatrists and branches off into all the support directed at keeping patients beholden to the whole gamut of mental health authorities and hospital and emergency dial-uo helpers. So we have wall-to-wall pro-psychiatrist advocacy built into labelling and MMPI-IIs. We have the same for almost all consumer-type support groups. From government and media, and the PTA. What you can’t do is contract for safety and retain your personal liberty, go off meds with professional assistance, and enter into conversations in which your own concerns with your own incapacitation or problems in living are not dismissed as irrelevant if you won’t take a backseat. So I take Phil Hickey’s point about anti-psychiatric thinking to recgognize that patients have no widely available opportunities to obtain services that allow their needs and determinations to matter over and above what other people want them to be.I perceive Bob Whitaker’s attitude to approach that, but think he’s got a full plate representing himself as a media entrepreneur while generating his own theories of mental illness. Frank’s point about his comment on Szasz is not belabored. To invent the use of the term pseudo-scientific for what on the surface of it is an ontological distinction needs justification. What is the message here. I agree we have to understand that. The unfortunately pedestrian connotations of leaving the accusation against Szasz in those terms detracts from a critique of psychiatry.

    #56955
    Witiman
    Participant

    Witiman, David Cooper may have coined the word when it was a neologism, but that doesn’t mean he had a monopoly on the meaning. He meant psychiatry that wasn’t biological and medical in slant.

    That is an entirely incorrect and defamatory utterance. Cooper clearly adopted the anti-psychiatric view that mental illness is caused by underlying mental aetiologies that must be remedied by the application of mental treatments and therefore completely rejected the psychiatric system and its primary reliance on physical therapies. Cooper’s use of any physical therapies were irregular secondary (derivative) considerations and usually only undertaken on a voluntary basis.

    Trying to argue that Cooper’s model of care is neo-psychiatry is like trying to argue that psychology is the same as psychiatry. However, to be clear, Cooper’s anti-psychiatry, although focused on mental treatments, is not the same as psychology as there are key theoretical differences between the two. As mental treatments <> physical therapies your position is obviously and critically flawed and designed to illusorily undermine Cooper’s work.

    When it comes to the “existence” of “mental illness”, we have several technical issues to resolve. First, I’m waiting for your proof that there is any such animal. Without such proof, there is no sense in arguing about whether it exists or not. Without proof, you don’t have anything, at least, not anything that is scientifically verifiable.

    So far my evidence has included computer viruses, the criminal justice system, and religions based on fiction including science fiction as in the case of scientology. As there is no possible way for you to deny the existence and nature of computer viruses you have lost the war already. You have also ignored the fact that adhering to your position that mental illness and mental disability don’t exist, in addition to being obviously incorrect, would almost certainly result in you being held against your will and tortured in an unofficial post-psychiatric madhouse. Alternatively stated psychiatric survivors don’t have the luxury of promoting the Szaszian buffoonery as doing so would bring their lives to a painful and torturous end – under Szasz survivors become ex-survivors.

    You’ve been arguing for “mental aetologies”, Witiman. That’s metaphysics.

    Did you read my last post? Metaphysics does not refer to the mental universe. Go back and read it again until you understand it.

    Scientific query, on the other hand, involves that which is measurable (i.e. that which has a physical existence).

    There is nothing stopping anyone from measuring or scientifically testing many theories about mental intellections including mental illness. For instance anti-virus software not only accurately identifies and treats artificial mental viruses it also enumerates and reports on how many it has located and corrected. That is why it is called computer science despite its focus on mental intellections. The software is mental, the hardware physical and computer science tends to focus on the former.

    Computer viruses aren’t viruses in the sense that real viruses are viruses. Computer viruses are, like intelligence, in some instances, artificial. Artificial involves artifice. In other words, it only resembles the real thing.

    Sure they are real viruses – artificial denotes the fact that they are man made rather than specifying that they are counterfeit. Computers and computer viruses are both man made and are both real, you can take my word on that.

    #56960
    Witiman
    Participant

    So I take Phil Hickey’s point about anti-psychiatric thinking

    Were you referring to that article -> https://www.madinamerica.com/2014/06/lingering-doubts-psychiatrys-scientific-status/ or another?

    The unfortunately pedestrian connotations of leaving the accusation against Szasz in those terms detracts from a critique of psychiatry.

    I don’t imagine that Szasz took his own position very seriously either. To be taken in by psychiatry one has to believe that mental illness is ultimately the result of an underlying physical pathology without noticing that a mental illness with an underlying pathophysiology is actually a neurological disease rather than a mental illness, and that neurological diseases fall outside of the ambit of a psychiatrist’s responsibility and care. To be taken in by Szasz one has to believe in the nonsensical position that mental illness does not exist despite the existence of computer viruses and anti-virus software, their own life experiences, and many other real examples of mental illnesses. Although both are obvious nonsenses, to be fair, the psychiatric ruse, especially with the help of its subordinate co-conspirator psychology, is a much better spoof.

    #56961

    This is my first venture into the forums. I am also aware I’m coming into this thread late. But as I was reading I found myself wondering is it really that difficult to define “anti-psychiatry?” I really don’t care what term gets used to articulate some shared core values. In fact, I’d prefer something sexier than just “anti-psychiatry.” But I’m not going to quibble over that detail. To me, it seems kind of straightforward to articulate what shared values are broadly held by this community as I experience it:

    FRAMED AS NEGATIVES:
    1. Opposition to willful or accidental misrepresentation of accurate information including: (a) asserting as scientific fact things for which there is insufficient, contradictory or absent evidence (b) presenting personal beliefs or assumptions as authoritative fact (c) willful or accidentally inaccurate or incomplete information necessary for fully informed consent to ANY service of ANY kind

    2. Opposition to forced or coercive treatment

    FRAMED AS POSITIVES:
    1. Support for rigorously accurate presentation of both what we can justifiably claim to know and what we must responsibly acknowledge that we don’t know about the mind and body, particularly as it pertains to mental and emotional distress and overall health and wellness.

    2. Support for individual freedom and autonomy, including the right of each individual to choose or refuse services voluntarily

    Psychiatry does not honor these principles, whether they are framed negatively or positively. Therefore, those of us who DO hold these principles may understandably adopt the label “anti-psychiatry.”

    I think it really might be just that simple.

    #56965
    Witiman
    Participant

    Andrew do you subscribe to the psychiatric position that mental illness has underlying physical origins that require physical therapies, the Szaszian position that mental illness and mental disability do not exist, or the classic anti-psychiatric Cooperian view that mental illness has mental origins and a mental pathology that should be remedied by the application of mental rather than physical treatments?

    #56967

    Andrew do you subscribe to the psychiatric position that mental illness has underlying physical origins that require physical therapies, the Szaszian position that mental illness and mental disability do not exist, or the classic anti-psychiatric Cooperian view that mental illness has mental origins and a mental pathology that should be remedied by the application of mental rather than physical treatments?

    May I ask for you to briefly explain to me what different it makes?

    #56972
    Witiman
    Participant

    This thread is about defining anti-psychiatry which, in theory, could be neo-psychiatric, Szaszian, or Cooperian. However, only one of those three options has any scientific credibility. Each alternative has fundamentally different theoretical foundations meaning they attract completely different backers and result in completely different organisations, actions, and outcomes. I am merely asking you which theory you are most attracted to and which organisation you want to join.

    #56982

    This thread is about defining anti-psychiatry which, in theory, could be neo-psychiatric, Szaszian, or Cooperian. However, only one of those three options has any scientific credibility. Each alternative has fundamentally different theoretical foundations meaning they attract completely different backers and result in completely different organisations, actions, and outcomes. I am merely asking you which theory you are most attracted to and which organisation you want to join.

    I’m confused, I think. I interpreted the subject question to be “what does it mean to say that one is “anti-psychiatry” and I answered that pretty simply. I don’t believe that psychiatry as an institution upholds to the principles (defined either negatively or positively) that I care about. Thus, I’m not aligned with that institution.

    Now, I quoted the wrong post so I’ll go back and answer your question in just a second.

    #56983

    This thread is about defining anti-psychiatry which, in theory, could be neo-psychiatric, Szaszian, or Cooperian. However, only one of those three options has any scientific credibility. Each alternative has fundamentally different theoretical foundations meaning they attract completely different backers and result in completely different organisations, actions, and outcomes. I am merely asking you which theory you are most attracted to and which organisation you want to join.

    I’m confused, I think. I interpreted the subject question to be “what does it mean to say that one is “anti-psychiatry” and I answered that pretty simply. I don’t believe that psychiatry as an institution upholds to the principles (defined either negatively or positively) that I care about. Thus, I’m not aligned with that institution.

    Now, I quoted the wrong post so I’ll go back and answer your question in just a second.

    Andrew do you subscribe to the psychiatric position that mental illness has underlying physical origins that require physical therapies, the Szaszian position that mental illness and mental disability do not exist, or the classic anti-psychiatric Cooperian view that mental illness has mental origins and a mental pathology that should be remedied by the application of mental rather than physical treatments?

    At present, as far as I am aware there is no evidence that confirms mental illness is a literal thing with underlying neurological causes. Even with the domain of speculation and investigation, there is no cohesive body of any research that I am aware of that would allow us to accurate state as fact that “mental illness is a biologically based disease” that is “just like diabetes or cancer” as the saying so often goes.

    At present, as far as I am aware there is no evidence that confirms that mental illness is provably not a biologically based disease (i.e. does not exist) which of course is difficult in that its difficult to prove a negative. But that means I can’t be accurate if I state as absolute fact that mental illness does not exist. I can say that there’s currently no hard evidence confirming it as a biologically based disease. That’s about it.

    As to the last one, I can’t really talk about “mental origins” unless you can define for me in some concrete term what a “mind” is. We have this problem with all language referring to the “mind” including “mental illness.” It seems to be metaphorical at best, and so an empirical distinction between mental and physical makes little sense at least in any empirical sense.

    I don’t believe there is much that anyone can say dogmatically about the subject of the extreme experiences human beings have without straying into the realm of empirical data-absent beliefs. At that point, a person is just telling me about their faith claim, which is fine… but I don’t care that much.

    #56988
    Frank Blankenship
    Participant

    I take it from your statements that they would make you something of a Cooperian, Witiman. I also imagine that that makes you something of a loner in the field of antipsychiatry as well. I can’t see many people here finding any grounds for agreement with you.

    I’m antipsychiatry myself, Witiman. I’m not neopsychiatry. Besides. the prefix neo only means new, recent, and modified, and that doesn’t necessarily make it a bad thing. I’m against psychiatry because it is harmful. Health itself resides not in treatment, or rather maltreatment, quite the reverse, it resides in resisting, and in refusing, even in evading, maltreatment and harm, maltreatment and harm that are the embodiment of psychiatry.

    I ask you for proof, and you come at me with something about fiction and science fiction. Neither fiction nor science fiction are non-fiction, and neither of them have the makings of evidence, that is, proof.

    Metaphysics is philosophy and theory. What physical is not is metaphysics (literal definition:’beyond physics’). What mental is is metaphysics. Physical is subject to scientific investigation. Mental is not. There is absolutely nothing wrong with us agreeing to disagree on this one. There is also absolutely nothing wrong with one of us being correct, and the other being in error.

    You might look into pataphysics sometime if you want an interesting diversion. Pataphysics is the study of phenomenon that is non-replicable, and I think that applies to much of your science.

    If the robots are taking over, so be it. Robotics it is. Someone really must do something for the poor things.

    #56990
    Witiman
    Participant

    At present, as far as I am aware there is no evidence that confirms mental illness is a literal thing with underlying neurological causes. Even with the domain of speculation and investigation, there is no cohesive body of any research that I am aware of that would allow us to accurate state as fact that “mental illness is a biologically based disease” that is “just like diabetes or cancer” as the saying so often goes.

    Exactly, psychiatry is a sad April fool’s day joke.

    At present, as far as I am aware there is no evidence that confirms that mental illness is provably not a biologically based disease (i.e. does not exist) which of course is difficult in that its difficult to prove a negative.

    There is a lot of evidence around that confirms that mental illness is not biologically based, keep looking and you will find it. Further, there is also a substantial amount of evidence suggesting that mental illness is a mental construct, for example, refer to David Cooper’s work. If you don’t believe in the existence of mental illness like Szasz then it means that you don’t believe it exists as a physical or mental construct. That means reading at least Cooper and Szasz and working out which view you prefer. Whitaker in MIA is like Cooper in that he leans towards the mental etiologies and pathologies for mental illness rather than Szasz.

    As to the last one, I can’t really talk about “mental origins” unless you can define for me in some concrete term what a “mind” is.

    The easiest way to differentiate the wit (mind) from the brain is to take the example of a computer. The hardware is its brain, the software (all of the lines of code and data) is its wit. So a human wit is all of the thoughts and information stored within the human brain and processed within memory just like a computer – meaning the wit is a mental rather than physical intellection. If a computer comes down with a mental disease, a computer virus, it means it has contracted a collection of diseased thoughts and information which then form part of its artificial wit. The origins of the computer virus are diseased lines of code, diseased thoughts and information, which are entirely mental rather than physical in nature. Therefore a computer virus is an example of a mental illness with mental rather than physical origins.

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