What did Abraham Lincoln, Georgia O’Keeffe, William James, Sigmund Freud, William Tecumseh Sherman, Franz Kafka, and the Buddha have in common? According to their biographers, all suffered from depression. And they utilized antidotes—some of them forgotten in the modern age— that helped them overcome and transform their depression without doctors.
“What’s a guy gotta do around here to lose a little credibility?” asked ProPublica reporter Jesse Eisinger in a 2012 piece about top Wall Street executives who created the financial meltdown but who remain top Wall Street executives, continue to sit on corporate and nonprofit boards, serve as regulators, and whose opinions are sought out […]
On November 16, 1989 in El Salvador, liberation psychologist Ignacio Martin-Baró was murdered by a Salvadoran government’s “counter-insurgency unit” created at the U.S. Army’s School of the Americas. This year, 25 years after his assassination, peace and justice activists around the world will honor Martin-Baró. Embarrassingly, the vast majority of U.S. psychologists and psychiatrists know […]
Have progressives made a mistake lumping all conservatives together and fueling their political energies into hating them? Or are there what Ralph Nader calls “anti-corporatist conservatives,” who loathe undeclared, endless wars as much as progressives? And should progressives seek alliances with these anti-corporatist conservatives to oppose unnecessary wars, corporate welfare, NSA violations of our privacy, and […]
Before Michael Pollan gained well-deserved respect and influence authoring five bestselling books about food, he got my attention in the late 1990s writing articles about American illegal-legal psychotropic drug hypocrisy. For those of us who appreciate what Pollan later accomplished for the local food and real food movements, it’s probably been a good idea that […]
Many young people labeled with psychiatric diagnoses are essentially anti-authoritarians who are pained and angered by coercion, unnecessary rules, and illegitimate authority. Anti-authoritarians question whether an authority is legitimate before taking that authority seriously. When they assess an authority to be illegitimate, they challenge and resist that authority—sometimes aggressively and sometimes passive-aggressively, sometimes wisely and […]
Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky’s book title Manufacturing Consent derives from presidential advisor and journalist Walter Lippmann’s phrase “the manufacture of consent”—a necessity for Lippmann, who believed that the general public is incompetent in discerning what’s truly best for them, and so their opinion must be molded by a benevolent elite who does know what’s […]
Some Psychiatrists Distancing Themselves from Profession as Drug Company Dominance Makes Some Shrinks Very Rich, and Many Patients Over Drugged
What does it tell us about the state of psychiatry when some of the biggest names in the psychiatric establishment are distancing themselves from psychiatry’s diagnostic system and its treatments? In 2013, National Institute Mental Health (NIMH) director Thomas Insel, citing the lack of scientific validity of psychiatry’s official diagnostic manual, the DSM, stated that […]
In the history of authoritarian governance, there have always been ruling power structures that use professionals to meet its needs, and today’s corporatocracies claim the profession of mental health as a powerful means to maintain the status quo.
When I interviewed investigative reporter Robert Whitaker in 2010 after the publication of his book Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America, he was not exactly a beloved figure within the psychiatry establishment. Whitaker had documented evidence that standard drug treatments were making many patients worse over […]