Religion

Missouri Makes Way for Xenu

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The Church of Scientology has set up an exhibit attacking psychiatry in the rotunda of the Missouri state capitol building:

The "Industry of Death" exhibit is sponsored by the Church of Scientology and makes a host of outrageous claims about the field of psychiatry. Twenty-five percent of psychiatrists sexually abuse their patients. Psychiatrists deliberately kill about 10,000 people a year—sounds about right. And for the big surprise, psychiatrists were responsible for the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks—guilty by association, at least, since psychiatrists are responsible for the existence of terrorists and suicide bombers.

Having known a number of people immeasurably helped by psychiatry and pharmaceutical remedies to depression, anxiety, and like maladies, I part ways with many of my fellow libertarians on the issue of mental health (that is, I disagree with those who think mental illness isn't real, and that pyscyhiatry is a crock).

Still, I'm sure we can all come together and agree that psychiatrists aren't systematically murdering people, and didn't cause September 11.

(Disclosure: Growing up, both my parents worked for pharmaceutical giant and sworn Scientology enemy Eli Lilly & Co.)

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  1. Still, I’m sure we can all come together and agree that psychiatrists aren’t systematically murdering people, and didn’t cause September 11.

    Still, I’m sure we can all come together and agree that Scientologists aren’t sane or rational.

  2. What causes the soap scum buildup in my shower?

    Psychiatrists

  3. I part ways with many of my fellow libertarians on the issue of mental health (that is, I disagree with those who think mental illness isn’t real, and that pyscyhiatry is a crock).

    I’ve never heard from these folks. Th vocal fringe, maybe?

  4. Radley:

    agreed. The world of psychiatry does boast its share of quacks, etc, maybe more than other in the health profession, but you’re right: good, credible mental health professionals, sometimes in conjunction with pharma, and always with individual effort do make a positive difference.

    But the Scientologists have been distracting us from Big Branson. That’s right. Branson and Scientologists. And Mormons. And Presbyterians (USA flavor). They’re in THE conspiracy of BIG BRANSON. (This is the only combination of pure evil that keeps both Yakov Smirnoff and Andy Williams onstage).

  5. 1) What is this doing in the rotunda of a capital building?

    2) Separation of Church and State isn’t just for smacking those pesky Christians. If the 10 Commandments aren’t appropriate wall decorations, then scientology propaganda isn’t either.

  6. Am I the only one that sees anything wrong with this exhibit being in the capitol building?

  7. Dammit JB…you beat me to it

  8. Twenty-five percent of psychiatrists sexually abuse their patients.

    Amazingly, 95% of statistics in non-statistical publications are just made up.

    Percentage increases exponentially with the publication’s proximity to Manhattan Island or San Francisco.

  9. I think I fall in line with the consensus here on both scientology and psychology, but I sure would go watch a concert by any band named Big Branson.

  10. “Twenty-five percent of psychiatrists sexually abuse their patients. Psychiatrists deliberately kill about 10,000 people a year….”

    Will we soon be seeing an elite corps of psychiatrists parachuted into Sadr City?

  11. JB, Self:

    Might it be a part of a temporary exhibit at the Mo State Museum? Which according to Jefferson City’s web site, is in the Capitol Bldg?

  12. Aren’t the scientologists the ones who have a gulag for recalcitant members wherein they are forced to do demeaning tasks, abused, fed

  13. Since when do libertarians oppose psychiatry? My philosophy is pretty much that, hey, if it makes you feel better, knock yourself out doing whatever you please (barring the obvious like harming others, fraud, etc)

  14. Aren’t the scientologists the ones who have a gulag for recalcitant members wherein they are forced to do demeaning tasks, abused, fed a starvation diet and deprived of sleep?

    Well I guess in the spirit of “it takes one to know one” the scientologists must be good at identifying abusers.

    Preview is my friend. Preview is my friend.

  15. I suppose taht if that were indeed the case, I would feel better about it, or at least as good as I can feel about anything scientology related. I’m still pissed that not only will Tom Cruise not come out of the closet, but that he has pulled my Katie in there with him. That bastard…

  16. That last one was directed towards VM, if that wasn’t clear.

  17. “Aren’t the scientologists the ones who have a gulag for recalcitant members wherein they are forced to do demeaning tasks, abused, fed”

    They are also forced to incubate the fetuses of higher profile members.

    J. Scott Christianson (author of the linked piece), will soon learn that you don’t fuck with the Scientology mafia just like the Jayhawks / Golden Smog boys learned that you don’t fuck with the Branson mafia.

  18. I also was unaware that libertarians had something against psychiatry. I thought we all loved drugs of all sorts.

  19. Radley (aka Boo),

    Both your parents worked for Eli Lilly when they were growing up? Doesn’t that violate sundry and various child labor laws?

  20. “But the Scientologists have been distracting us from Big Branson. That’s right. Branson and Scientologists. And Mormons. And Presbyterians (USA flavor). They’re in THE conspiracy of BIG BRANSON. (This is the only combination of pure evil that keeps both Yakov Smirnoff and Andy Williams onstage).”

    hilarious! i’ve always just imagined this cutthroat seedy noir underside to the world of branson where shoji and the baldknobbers probably have scores to settle with smirnoff and williams, etc. all this intrigue boiling under the surface where the drunken hoosiers at “the lake” will never notice.

    oh, and i think the rantings of scientologists are probably the most coherent words to come out of jeff city since…well…yeah.

  21. Jn

    I have run accross libertarians who oppose psychiatrists for two reasons:

    Most psychiatric theories are nothing more than a hodgepodge of empirical rules. These rules sometimes contradict each other, and are not really testable.

    Frequently these theories are used to justify the disenfranchisement of individuals. People can be kidnapped (involuntarily committed), forced to ingest medicines they don’t want etc.

    This is, in my mind, a quite legitimate complaint:

    My wife suffers from endometriosis, which is a debilitating and painful disease. If one looks at the DSM or the analogue from the 1980’s, 20 short years ago, one will find a disease called somatism.

    Somatism’s symptoms are identical to those of endometriosis. The treatments recommended for somatism are demeaning and mostly pointless, amounting to attempting to force women to permit their husbands to have sex with them. For a woman whose endometriosis makes sex painful, a diagnosis and treatment for somatism will make her life hell on earth.

    That is not to say all psychiatry is bad. It’s just that the science is still in the middle ages, and should be treated with a grain of salt.

  22. The problem with psychiatry for libertarians is the involuntary aspect of it(as well as evading personal resposibility).The non-libertarian problem is that psychiatry is a steaming pile off bs with no basis in science.Psychiatry is about as scientific as Scientology.

    Go read some Thomas Szasz.

  23. Downstater- Haven’t you heard of the new music act in Branson- Bloody Bill and the Bushwackers? Their biggest hit is a rap number called “By the time I get to Lawrence.”

  24. “where the drunken hoosiers at “the lake” will never notice. ”

    Oh- you’ve met my uncle Bob (except for the drunken part, you located him perfectly) grin.

    Self: yeah. And may you get your gift of Katie back.

  25. All religions are equal, but some are more equal than others. I hope the ACLU has a lawsuit pending.

  26. Wow, I should have realized that the Dr. Szasz fans would be slithering out from the woodwork, but I was taken by surprise.

    I live to see the theories of how mental disorders are just made up to oppress folks who are just expressing themselves ‘differently’. Could never be any value in something that a few praticioners abuse or are just bad at doing, eh?

  27. You’re being glib.

    I wonder what the percentage of psychiatrists who inevitably give in and sleep with one of their current (unethical) or former (not necessarily unethical)patients is. I doubt it is all that much although I have seen it occur with my own thetan-addled eyes.

  28. Guy,

    What Dr Szasz fans?

    One post by some guy named ^^^^^^ does not make a slithering mass of fans.

  29. Who keeps down the electric car?
    Who made Steve Gutenberg a star?

    Psychiatry.

  30. Scientologists hate psychiatrists because psychiatrists are their main competition for lost lonely souls.

  31. Guy,

    What Dr Szasz fans?

    Everybody mentioning what was in the body of my post. I did not even see the other invocation of Dr. Szasz until after I posted.

  32. Anyone should be free to contract with any “healer” he likes for treatment, services,counsel etc.

    Psychiatry aspires to the ultimate Nanny State

    Szasz’ writings are not merely a well reasoned debunking of Psychiatry but are a broad argument for the libertarian philosophy.His works belong on the shelf right next to Hayek and Friedman.

  33. Have scientologist always been this weird or have they been getting weirder?

  34. you should blog about it!

    the idea of an aclu v. scientology grudge match makes my mouth water, though distracting them from their main body of work (throwing ice cubes at leviathan) is probably not the best of ideas until bush the younger is out of office.

  35. Szasz’ writings are not merely a well reasoned debunking of Psychiatry

    I don’t think Szasz debunks all of psychiatry, but rather certain aspects of it. After all, he is a psychiatrist.

  36. “Have scientologist always been this weird or have they been getting weirder?”

    They’ve always been this weird, irrational, and demented. It’s just that lately they seem to have more money and members than in the past.

    Quite frankly, someone needs to call the local chapter of the ACLU and get them on this pronto.

  37. “Anyone should be free to contract with any “healer” he likes for treatment, services,counsel etc.

    Psychiatry aspires to the ultimate Nanny State”

    Yes, while Scientologists believe you should give all of your money and worldly possessions to their “church” in order to buy into a giant ponzi scheme with a freaky looking alien sitting at the peak.

  38. My own experience with psychiatry and psychopharmacology (is that a word?) has been that I owe my sanity and continued life to this field. Most psychiatrists I have talked to will readily admit that the identification of and use of pharmaceuticals is of an empirical (i.e. trial and error) nature. They admit that they don’t really know exactly what antidepressants do. The ironic part is that my most recent doctor is leaving the practice, and due in no small part to the “war on drugs”, I cannot find a doctor willing to supply certain politically incorrect medications that have kept me alive and partially happy for many years. I have about one month’s supply left, after which, I hold little hope for my sanity. I guess I’ll be another casualty of the “war”. It’s a crazy world, huh?

  39. Szasz debunks Psychiatry as an institution-after he is done not much is left other than individuals freely choosing to contract for services they desire.I really admire the Doctor for shredding his chosen profession right after securing tenure.More academics should try it.

    I never realised how many libertarians love the Therapeutic State perhaps they are these new “liberaltarians” I’ve been hearing so much about.

  40. ^^^^^^ = sixgun?

  41. mediageek
    who is defending Scientology?
    They do not have the Authourity of the State
    backing them up.Of course some people fear WalMart Coca Cola and GM more than the State-
    I think they are called “liberals”.

  42. “I never realised how many libertarians love the Therapeutic State perhaps they are these new “liberaltarians” I’ve been hearing so much about.”

    it’s right below the state of sanctimony in Our One True Faith.

  43. I supect that one reason some — myself included — libertarians are suspicious, if not downright hostile, to psychiatry is that mental illness is used 1) as a crutch for people to avoid personal responsibility (an important facet of libertarianism thinking); 2) way too often to justify restricting people’s freedom through means anywhere from medicating to imprisonment; 3) as a label that is far to easy to apply to people when the “science” is hard to back up with real data.

    Psychiatry is also far too fluid in its approaches, methods, theories etc etc for many libertarians who tend to be hard-science oriented.

    Finally, since we are so very often labelled “crazy” ourselves for our beliefs, we take offense at the whole “crazy industry” more easily….

    We’re kinda like the cavemen in the GEICO commercials.

  44. The non-libertarian problem is that psychiatry is a steaming pile off bs with no basis in science. Psychiatry is about as scientific as Scientology.

    Psychiatry might be BS, but psychology is not. But anti psych* groups like Scientology make no effort to distinguish between the two.

  45. peggysue,
    You shouldn’t have to prove you are sick and that your desired drug is acceptable treatment( in a libertarian society) to get your speed or narcotics or whatever.Just walk down to the drugstore and buy them.If you are unsure of composition and dosage bring a note from anyone you trust-some sort of healer we’ll say.
    Psychiatry would classsify such behavior as an illness requiring coercive “treatment”.

  46. I personally believe much of psychology is bs,
    as I do all of the “soft sciences”. I only have a problem with bs when it is backed by the force of the State.

  47. I personally believe much of psychology is bs, as I do all of the “soft sciences”.

    The scientific method is a powerful thing. It serves psychology as well as it does physics.

  48. “Psychiatry is also far too fluid in its approaches, methods, theories etc etc for many libertarians who tend to be hard-science oriented.”

    That’s fucking funny…

    Economics is the backbone of libertarian thought. It would not be considered hard science. It is softer than either of the two psych’s…

    Libertarians, like everyone else, subjectively judge those things that they have little understanding of as illegitimate if there appears to be a criticism of their favored ideas.

    Szasz’s arguments are aimed at practices decades old and do not really touch upon, for the most part, current practice. Ivory tower at it’s worst.

  49. Science- funny: lots of the “Austrian” critiques of neoclassical econ falls under the same banner.

  50. “I don’t think Szasz debunks all of psychiatry, but rather certain aspects of it. After all, he is a psychiatrist.”

    If I remember correctly, he once said that his teaching psychiatry is like an atheist teaching theology – there is a place for it.

    I don’t remember reading anything along those lines, but I don’t think he would object to someone taking psych meds voluntarily. I feel sure he would object to characterizing taking of the drug as treating a disease, though.

  51. The problem isn’t that there are questions about Psychiatry being effective or safe. The problem is related to Scientology being the biggest pile of crap to come down the pike in a long time. Screw the clams.

  52. Psychiatry might be BS, but psychology is not.

    I think that might be backwards, if it was true at all. Really, neither one is pure BS. Psychiatry has brought measurable relief to people suffering from serious ailments like bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia. Based on my personal experience with both, it seems the qualifications for being a psychiatrist keeps the rate of nutjobs much lower than that of psychology.

    Of course, psychology has helped people as well. But no amount of analysis can do for a someone with an observable brain disorder what psychiatry and its pharmacological tools have done.

  53. The scientific method is a powerful thing. It serves psychology as well as it does physics.

    No it doesn’t..Hard Science does not “prove” things with vague statistical correlations about human behavior in non-repeatable experiments.

    Go read Szasz,he is not crusading against psychiatric practices as much as he is attacking the ideas behind it.Nevertheless his arguments remain sound.Psychiatric diseases are not like other disease as they have no pathology.If and when a pathology is discovered for some or all of what is lumped into a psych category it is no longer a psych disease but a medical one.Neurologists treat “real” brain disease.

  54. “If and when a pathology is discovered for some or all of what is lumped into a psych category it is no longer a psych disease but a medical one.Neurologists treat “real” brain disease.”

    This shows a profound misunderstanding of both psychiatry and neurology. A disease state can exist and be treated without a known etiology. If a neurological disease results in emotional or behavioral problems, the realm of psychology and psychiatry, it is a mental illness. Tx may come from neurology or pharm, but that doesn’t change the important manifestations of the disease state…or the domain in which consequences of the neurological cause are experienced by the individual.

    To say that once we understand the etiology of a mental illness makes it no longer a mental illness is just sloppy thinking. It requires some sort of dichotomy between the brain and the mind that can not be sustained under scientific scrutiny.

    Szasz’s arguments make more sense the less you understand the workings of the brain. His critique of the use by the state of the 2 psych does not touch upon the practice or scientific foundations of them.

  55. They’ve always been this weird, irrational, and demented.

    Don’t forget “evil” – at least for the leadership.

    who is defending Scientology?
    They do not have the Authourity of the State
    backing them up.

    By calling themselves a “religion” they most certainly DO have the authority of the State backing them up. Otherwise what is in fact a pyramid-scheme/cult would have been broken up decades ago.

  56. you’re right, multiple carats, hard science doesn’t prove anything at all. strictly speaking, we disprove, using statistical hypothesis testing, including statistical correlations and regressions. the human-examining soft sciences are limited to correlations because it’s unethical and impossible to control human test subjects in experiments the way we do with other organisms. the conclusions are necessarily weaker, and not as easily replicated, since experimental conditions can’t be consistently controlled.

  57. As a psychology major, and I do not pretend to be an expert in the feild just becasue I have taken some classes, I can see both sides of the story (sort of). Yes, a large portion of psy theory is bullshit. like most freudian theory. There is a lot psychology/psychiatry does not know, we still are in the dark ages about the human mind.

    However, modern research can point to studies that support a correlation (and often a caustion) between a treatment (be it theapry, or drug) and improved level of happiness/ability for a person to get on with their life. I have no idea where the scientolist got their info, but they must be smoking crack to think 90% of psychiatry have sexual relations with their patients

  58. “psychiatrists are medical doctors and psychologists are not. So psychiatry is the medical treatment of the psyche, and psychology is the science of the psyche.”

    Wait..why the heck is psychiatry bad if they are doctors. They’re the only ones that can prescribe medicine, right?

    I take anti-depressants and no one except my doctor has a right to second guess the goddamn medicine I take.

    And no, I am not the typical American who goes into his doctor’s office and gets some anti-depressants for something stupid like being fat. I despise regular doctors that diagnose your illness and give you antidepressants, it should be a job for the psychiatrists.

    If I do not take my bupropion I will literally attempt to kill myself. My family has a history of mental illness on both sides.

    I never knew Libertarians were against medicine for depression or schizophrenia. I am a 100% libertarian, but to remain that 100% it shouldn’t matter whether or not I believe medicine for mental illness is good or bad.

  59. Interesting- psychotherapy was actually the first time I was encouraged to drop the hyper-emotional lens through which I had been viewing the world and look at the conditions of my life from a rational perspective.

  60. Szasz’s primary point is that, whatever good psychiatry can do for individuals, it must do voluntarily, in the normal doctor-patient relationship. The coercive practice of psychiatry, Szasz says, is meant to help SOCIETY more than the individual; such psychiatrists are more akin to Orwell’s “Thought Police” than to physicians. Their mode of operation is more like that of government “public health agencies,” which seek to promote inoculation and sanitation in defending society against transmissible disease. Szasz points out, however, that pure mental “illness” (that is, mental illness, which is not a symptom of a treatable, underlying medical condition) is not such a disease, and, as far as we know, there is no inoculation against it. So, the use of psychiatrists as “public health agents” is inappropriate, and doubly, hypocritically so in a society where personal liberty is supposed to be held sacred.

    Agree or disagree with him, I think that Szasz puts his points across well, and causes the reader to think about both psychiatry and public health policy in a new and worthwhile light. I’ll admit to being a fan of his, not because I am convinced that he is correct in every particular, but because he persuasively speaks truth to power in so many instances that he has earned my respect.

  61. dpotts, by all means if it helped you good, in fact there is some support for the “talking” part of freudian thearpy, but the whole edpius/electra complex stuff is mostly bs

  62. dhex:

    thanks for the video link

    those scientology guys are scary crazy bullies

  63. Is their any other “science” that uses anything like the DSM? Diseases like consumer debt,gambling,child molesting,eating too much.talking in class,defying authority in an institutional setting and so on.Real doctors define disease by pathology-not committe meetings.
    Every time we have an election some psych is spouting off about how conservatives have a psych disorder.
    Psychiatrists and psychologists are always admitting they might have been wrong and bad in “the old days” but it is purely scientific truth now.
    Everything is explained away as a “chemical imbalance” in the brain.
    Treat a lot of syphilis and “masturbation insanity” in your practice these days Dr Science?(Well psychs do still treat hysteria)

    As for patients,I’m not denying you suffer from something “real”-perhaps a biological real disease.I am happy if you receive relief from meds or talking or whatever.
    James Anderson Merritt is essentially correct
    in his summary however Szasz addresses issues well beyond psychiatry,The State and public health in his arguments.Ideas like freedom ,Liberty, responsibility and individualism.

  64. ^^^^^, I’m somewhat sympathetic to your arguments here. But still, I’m wondering if there’s anything in the DSM-IV about people who can’t hit the spacebar after they use a punctuation mark.

  65. “Diseases like consumer debt,gambling,child molesting,eating too much.talking in class,defying authority in an institutional setting and so on.”

    More than anything else this list shows how little you understand about this topic. Take some time to learn about the meaning of the various categorizations in the DSM before you decide that the things on your list are considered mental illnesses.

    A superficial knowledge of a subject makes it easy to spout bullshit.

    JAM,
    “Szasz points out, however, that pure mental “illness” (that is, mental illness, which is not a symptom of a treatable, underlying medical condition) is not such a disease, and, as far as we know, there is no inoculation against it.”

    This is the heart of the problem. And the source of much misunderstanding regarding the field of mental illness. The field has been moving away from these kinds of disease definitions for decades. The scientiology critique of the field and that of Szasz come from the same era. Their relevance today is much diminished.

    Again, the criticism of the social nexus between medicine and the state is a different matter.

  66. “those scientology guys are scary crazy bullies”

    not even so much scary as, well…they’re clearly used to working within a context where repeated accusations of bad behavior from authority figures. it’s a really sad con, though, if one realizes what’s going on and doesn’t feel like playing those kinds of games. similar to synanon in some ways, at least from what i’ve read (that was sort of before my time)

    they actually remind me of some cops, for that matter.

    scientology doesn’t really bother me that much as far as “cults” go, if only because they have a very low body count. people need to pick what they need to pick, and i wholeheartedly recommend the tour of the main joint on 42nd street in manhattan, though afterwards you will get a somewhat rough come on about doing an audit.

    which i also found entertaining, but i am a strange cat.

  67. Graphite,
    Must be one of those chemical imbalances. If it is in the DSM-IV I should lobby to have it removed by the DSM-V.Maybe I could even get a new category by DSM-VI for people who are no-space-bar-using-after-punctuation-PHOBES.
    Better watch your ass if they do.

    Seriously, that is the way the DSM works for anyone not familiar with it.

  68. i’ve always just imagined this cutthroat seedy noir underside to the world of branson where shoji and the baldknobbers probably have scores to settle with smirnoff and williams, etc. all this intrigue boiling under the surface where the drunken hoosiers at “the lake” will never notice.

    That would be great (maybe as a movie – got any titles in mind?), but I’ll bet that life is so mundane down there that none of those people ever even see each other. They perform, go home, go to bed, wake up at 6 AM, eat their oatmeal, go for a walk around the lake, go home, eat lunch at 11 AM, take a nap, do the early show, eat dinner at 5:30 PM, do the night show, go home, and so on. Nothing hinky, no hanky-panky, nothing.
    Actually, the older I get, the better that life sounds. Maybe Bobby Vinton needs a protege. (Crap! I checked his website – he hasn’t settled down there yet. He still tours.)

  69. dhex,

    I don’t know what “synanon” is, but Scientology&tm; runs “Narcanon”. And if by “body count” you’re referring to corpses, yes, the count is low; but they’ve fucked up a hell of a lot of heads and destroyed many families. That counts as “evil” in my book.

  70. So, here’s my question.

    Is Captain Carat the guy who used to post under the username Six Gun?

    Haven’t seen Six Gun around, but they sure do talk the same.

  71. One picture sums it up for me: Szasz is a quack.

    I sure ^^^^^ has contacted the Hollywood center and had us declared SPs. The Fair Game orders will be handed down to the local Orgs, private detectives will be hired to look into our pasts, and process servers will be at our doors by midnight.

  72. Psychiatry is about as scientific as Scientology.

    So, that’s why my anti-depressants work so well.

  73. Interesting – psychotherapy was actually the first time I was encouraged to drop the hyper-emotional lens through which I had been viewing the world and look at the conditions of my life from a rational perspective.

    I did psychotherapy for 14 months – and in conjunction with some miraculously horrible drugs – it worked like a charm. I’ll admit I never really understood why but that may be the best explanation yet. All of my friends, especially those who have known me since I was a kid (before I became “hyper-emotional”) said I became a much more enjoyable and well-balanced person after all that.

    Interesting… anyway, the Scientologists sure seem to have a lot of time on their hands. They don’t have better things to do?

  74. Psychiatry is about as scientific as Scientology.
    So, that’s why my anti-depressants work so well.

    Psychiatrists didn’t invent them they just prescribe them-for lack of any other effective treatment.

    Szasz is a quack.
    Hey that pic would look good on my wall right next to Rosalynn Carter and John Wayne Gacy pic
    Rosalynn Carter and Jim Jones pic
    and of course Nixon With Elvis

  75. Psychiatry and psychology seemed to have gotten confused in this thread.

    Furthermore, while I can’t speak for the entirety of psychiatry, I can state that after self-diagnosing with bipolar, and visiting a psychiatrist to confirm the diagnosis and prescribe me the proper medication based on a thorough evaluation (which diagnosed me as bipolar II), I can with no hesistation say that Scientologists, as well as those who refuse to acknowledge the benefits of psychiatry, need a bit more education, or else need to go fuck themselves. Whichever is more likely.

  76. Okay,

    So for anyone who wants to see the weakness in ^^^^^’s mentor’s arguments, Szasz does a great job of burying himself in this debate.

    http://www.szasz.com/isdepressionadiseasetranscript.html

    I would say Szasz is a metaphoric expert. (from Szasz…”the whale is a metaphoric fish.”)

  77. “the whale is a metaphoric fish.” is like saying I am a metaphoric NFL running back.

  78. Props to Dr. Szasz for getting a Batman villain named for him.

  79. This thread is probably going stale, but I’m compelled to throw in my 50 kopecks.

    In my experience, psychiatry has only offered solutions to my self-reported problems. They didn’t always work, but when they worked, holy shit did they work.

    In my experience, psychology has been at worst benignly useless, and at best a self-directed transformative blessing that may not have saved my life but certainly made it far more valuable to me. I have found talk therapy to be useless for people wanting to thrive, but very useful for people trying to survive. The only psychology that seems to help people thrive are unintuitive reprocessing techniques like EMDR, which seem to be used competently by only small subset of practitioners.

    Szasz and Scientologists aside, it seems to me that many of the critics of psychiatry are recovered substance abusers who equate all substance use with abuse. To my eyes, they incompetently used a poor choice of drug to self-medicate for years and as a result have condemned all drugs, even the right ones taken in the right dosages in an appropriate regimen. It makes me wonder if they avoid vitamin and mineral supplements in order to “not use them as a crutch”.

    I don’t find it all surprising that many people would be critical of psychology, coercive politics aside, since the most prominent form, talk therapy, appears to be of little therapeutic use for anything other than catastrophe mitigation.

  80. “”the whale is a metaphoric fish.” is like saying I am a metaphoric NFL running back.”

    It’s more like saying you are a metaphoric NFL shoulder pad.

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