Bruce Levine – What Does It Mean to Be Called ‘Crazy’ in a Crazy World?

June 21, 2016

It has become increasingly mainstream [3] to criticize psychiatry for its corruption by drug companies, invalid diagnoses, lack of long-term treatment effectiveness, and other scientific failings. The recent book, Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness [4], by radio host and therapist Will Hall, reminds us that perhaps the most pathetic aspect of “inside mainstream mental health” is how simplistic, boring and reductionist it is, when our natures are so complex, fascinating and non-reductionist. Outside Mental Health restores the full range of color to our humanity. As a young man, Hall was diagnosed with schizophrenia. The central question Hall asks is: What does it mean to be called crazy in a crazy world? This central question leads to specific questions that include: What does an “altered state” mean, and can it be terrifying but also exhilarating and illuminating? Is hearing voices really a symptom of illness or simply another dimension of our humanity? How much does context affect the experience of illicit and psychiatric psychotropic drugs? What is the relationship between modern art and what is commonly called psychosis? How can jazz, punk and political activism help people who have been diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder? And what egalitarian alternatives outside of mainstream

Tranqualizer Dart Guns For Children With ADHD: FDA Approved!

June 21, 2016

Washington | The FDA announced it gave its approval for the marketing release of their new anesthetic dart guns, specifically designed to calmchildren suffering from ADHD. The new product is capable of putting a child to sleep in less than 4 seconds and reportedly has no serious long-term effects on the health of children. These new tools specifically created to assist parents with children suffering from ADHD, have a practical range of approximately 10 to 12 feet (3 to 4 meters) and their effect is meant to last for a period of 4 to 6 hours per injection. The manufacturer advises, however, not to use the gun more than 1 to 2 times daily on the same child in order to prevent the development of a physical addiction to the product. Read

Paul Fassa – Cannabis Remedies for Epilepsy Were Discovered and Buried in the 1940s

June 20, 2016

Applying low THC high CBD cannabis or cannabidiol successfully for seizures has become relatively widespread among families with children who are having chronic seizures, even several grand mal seizures daily. This awareness was greatly enhanced by an unusual mainstream August 2013 media report by CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta, M.D., called “Weed.” Since that report, high CBD (cannabidiol) low THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive compound of cannabis, is being used successfully for children with terminal seizures throughout the nation. Harken back to the days of former alcohol prohibitionist Harry Anslinger who was appointed head of The Bureau of Narcotics, formed around the time of the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act. You may be surprised to find that in 1947, a similar study was underway for using a synthetic form of THC with at least 50% success rate for children with intractable seizure issues. Anslinger and company did what they could do to prevent the news from getting out. But the study papers slipped through and were recently discovered. More about that incident later in this article. For now let’s explore what could have existed for 66 years as relief from the ever increasing numbers of seizure stricken children, which corresponds with the increased CDC childhood

Pharmaceutical industry-sponsored meals associated with higher prescribing rates

June 20, 2016

Accepting a single pharmaceutical industry-sponsored meal was associated with higher rates of prescribing certain drugs to Medicare patients by physicians, with more, and costlier, meals associated with greater increases in prescribing, according to an article published online by JAMA Internal Medicine. Some argue industry-sponsored meals and payments help facilitate the discussion of novel treatments but others have raised concerns about the potential to influence prescribing patterns. Previous studies have suggested physician-industry relationships were associated with increased prescribing of brand-name drugs. R. Adams Dudley, M.D., M.B.A., of the University of California, San Francisco, and coauthors linked two national data sets to quantify the association between industry payments and physician prescribing patterns. Authors identified the most-prescribed brand-name drugs in each of four categories in Medicare Part D in 2013. The target drugs were rosuvastatin calcium among statins, nebivolol among cardioselective β-blockers, olmesartan medoxomil among angiotensin receptor blockers (ACE inhibitors and ARBs), and desvenlafaxine succinate among selective serotonin and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs and SNRIs). The 2013 Open Payments database describes the value and the drug or device promoted for payments to physicians for five months in 2013 as reported by pharmaceutical companies. Read

Greg Palast – Dad’s Last Erection

June 20, 2016

Just before his eighty-ninth birthday, my father was watching a Viagra commercial on TV. It ends with the warning, “If an erection persists for more than four hours, contact your doctor.” He called up his clinic and got the nurse. He’d taken some Viagra, he said, more than four hours ago and his erection still wouldn’t go away. “Mr. Palast, you shouldn’t have done that! You’ll have to get to the emergency room immediately.” “I can’t go,” he said. “I haven’t shown all the neighbors yet.” Read

DANIEL FALCONE – On the Slow Death of the Humanities

June 20, 2016

Should schools be scaling back on the humanities? In short, the answer is no. First of all, the basic premise here is somewhat incorrect. Michael Bérubé, a professor of literature at Pennsylvania State University, and director of the Institute for the Arts and Humanities says that there is no “plummet,” although it is a universal presupposition. Independent school administrators, curriculum planners, teachers, and workers at non-profits, that hypocritically push tech-education in the new spirit of the age, should reconsider their messaging, especially when they largely received humanities or liberal arts degrees themselves. Bérubé contends that while it is true that English enrollments are down in some places since 2008, and not healthy overall, they are not as bad as the really lean years. Bérubé maintains that students and families keep hearing the myth that English is a dying subject. This humanities ending attitude was just recently reflected in April 2016 when Pennsylvania State Representative Brad Roae (R) proposed ending higher-education grants for students studying “poetry or some other Pre Walmart major.” Read

At any skill level, making art reduces stress hormones

June 16, 2016

Whether you’re Van Gogh or a stick-figure sketcher, a new Drexel University study found that making art can significantly reduce stress-related hormones in your body. Although the researchers from Drexel’s College of Nursing and Health Professions believed that past experience in creating art might amplify the activity’s stress-reducing effects, their study found that everyone seems to benefit equally. “It was surprising and it also wasn’t,” said Girija Kaimal, EdD, assistant professor of creative arts therapies. “It wasn’t surprising because that’s the core idea in art therapy: Everyone is creative and can be expressive in the visual arts when working in a supportive setting. That said, I did expect that perhaps the effects would be stronger for those with prior experience.” Read

Prestigious Cochrane Challenges The European Medicines Agency About HPV Vaccines Harms

June 15, 2016

The Cochrane Nordic Center’s Director, Peter C Gotzsche, MD, MSc, filed a formal Complaint with the European Medicines Agency (EMA) May 26, 2016 regarding the EMA’s 40-page Assessment Report (Nov. 11, 2015) about the safety of the HPV vaccines, which are “supposed to decrease deaths from cervical cancer.” The Cochrane complaint cited ten serious concerns about EMA’s handling of information in its report; however, I will discuss only those which I find relatively intriguing: Whether the EMA has been open and accountable to citizens and has respected citizens’ rights to know uncertainties related to the safety of the HPV vaccines. Whether the extreme secrecy, with lifelong confidentiality agreements, which the EMA imposed upon its working group members and scientific experts, is needed; is legitimate; is in the public interest; and guarantees that the administration enjoys legitimacy. Whether the redactions the EMA imposed on documents it delivered to the citizens according to Freedom of Information requests were needed; were legitimate; are in the public interest; and guarantees that the administration enjoys legitimacy. Whether the EMA behaves in a manner that guarantees that the administration enjoys legitimacy when the agency uses experts with financial ties to the manufacturers, in particular considering that it is always possible to find

Kelly Brogan, M.D – Do 5 Million Americans Really Have Bipolar Disorder?

June 15, 2016

Bipolar Disorder is one of the biggest mental health concerns in the United States, but instead of addressing the true, spiritual nature of the disease, the normal course of treatment involves harmful pharmaceuticals.  This article was originally published on and republished with permission. “I have Bipolar disorder” …say 5.7 million Americans. These patients have been labeled, categorized, and offered an understanding of themselves as diseased, sick, and permanently broken. Considered one of the more severe mental illnesses, perhaps because it presents almost as an amalgamation of psychosis and depression in particularly volatile form. In my training, I was taught to medicate these patients, often with multiple medications, and often against their will. Poetically, these patients, desperate to understand who they are in a system that condemns them to a life of struggle and suffering, will be vindicated by modern science.[1] Read

RALPH NADER – If Only Your Body Could Speak to Your Mind

June 14, 2016

For thousands of years humans have defended themselves from harm by others. But many have proceeded to regularly harm themselves. They have actively searched for substances to ingest, inhale, inject and apply which may give them some immediate relief but damage or destroy their lives over time. Why do these humans so beat up on their own bodies? Obviously, they know that damaging behaviors have serious consequences, both immediately and in the long run. Why have health care professionals had such a hard time convincing people “to do no harm” to themselves? The persistence of partial self-immolation is unremitting. What’s different about recent centuries from prior millennia is that addiction, masochism, slow-motion suicide have become big business. Now there are huge profits to be made in seducing, tempting or deceiving people at all ages to spend money to harm themselves. Read
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