Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Stop Using Monstanto Roundup, People!

Here's a new article I'm reposting from the Dr. Mercola website regarding Monsanto's fraudulent science.

By Dr. Mercola
Did you know that the 2017 spending bill1,2,3 includes a rider allocating $3 million for consumer education and outreach by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to "promote understanding and acceptance of" biotechnology?
The deal was recently passed by the Senate, 79 to 18, “under a bipartisan agreement to keep the government funded through the end of September,” The Washington Post reports.4 In other words, if you are American, you are paying for Monsanto to spread their pernicious propaganda. The fact that they can get away with this and slip it in to avoid government shutdown is dystopian, to say the least.
Not only have the government and the food and chemical technology industries fought to prevent the labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), your tax dollars are now to be spent on efforts to “assure” you that genetically engineered (GE) foods are of no concern.

FDA and USDA to Promote Biotech and Chemical Technologies

To quote The Washington Post, “The money is to be used to tout ‘the environmental, nutritional, food safety, economic and humanitarian impacts’ of biotech crops and their derivative food products.” This joint effort by the FDA and USDA is an outrage. As noted by Rep. Nita M. Lowey, D-N.Y., who unsuccessfully fought to get the rider struck from the bill:5
“It is not the responsibility of the FDA to mount a government-controlled propaganda campaign to convince the American public that genetically modified foods are safe. The FDA has to regulate the safety of our food supply and medical devices. They are not, nor should they be, in the pro-industry advertising business.”
A Pew Research Center study6 published last year found 39 percent of Americans believe GMO foods are worse for health than conventionally-grown foods; 55 percent believe organics are healthier than conventional; and 40 percent report eating mostly or some organic foods.
Still, nearly half of all Americans (48 percent) believe GMOs are no different from non-GMO foods and 10 percent believe GMOs are actually better for health than non-GMOs. Clearly, the chemical technology industry wants to prevent growth of anti-GMO sentiment, but using tax dollars for indoctrination purposes simply should not be permitted.

Army of Shills Steer Online Discussions

In related news, plaintiffs in a lawsuit against Monsanto say the company hired an army of shills via third parties to steer online conversations about Roundup — the chemical most commonly used on GE crops — to counter any and all negative comments with corporate propaganda, thereby manipulating and stifling public knowledge about its dangers.7 As reported by Reuters:8
“The plaintiffs alleged that Monsanto targeted all online materials and even social media comments that indicate potential dangers of its products … ‘Monsanto even started the aptly-named ‘Let Nothing Go’ program to leave nothing, not even Facebook comments, unanswered …
[T]hrough a series of third parties, it employs individuals who appear to have no connection to the industry, who in turn post positive comments on news articles and Facebook posts, defending Monsanto, its chemicals and GMOs,’ the document reads.
On a larger scale, Monsanto allegedly ‘quietly funnels money to ‘think tanks’ such as the ‘Genetic Literacy Project’ and the ‘American Council on Science and Health’ — organizations intended to shame scientists and highlight information helpful to Monsanto and other chemical producers,’ according to the plaintiffs.
The accusations are backed by a batch of emails, used in court as evidence … [Ph.D] William Moar … reportedly said at a conference in January 2015 that the company had ‘an entire department,’ dedicated to ‘debunking’ science which disagreed with the agrochemical giant’s own research.”

EPA Official Colluded With Chemical Giant on Public’s Dime

Documents entered into evidence in the lawsuits against Monsanto also strongly suggest at least one Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) official has been working on Monsanto’s behalf — another breach of public trust and misuse of public funds. After the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) declared glyphosate a probable human carcinogen9,10 in 2015, Monsanto has relied on the EPA’s 2016 determination that glyphosate is “not likely to be carcinogenic” to humans.11
Based on the IARC's determination, the California agency of environmental hazards declared glyphosate a carcinogen under Proposition 65, and will require all glyphosate-containing products to carry a cancer warning.
However, evidence suggests Jess Rowland, former associate director of the EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), conspired with Monsanto to protect the company’s interests by manipulating and preventing toxicological investigations. Rowland was a key author of the EPA’s controversial glyphosate report, and correspondence between EPA toxicologist Marion Copley and Rowland suggests Rowland colluded with Monsanto to find glyphosate non-carcinogenic.12,13
Documents also reveal Rowland warned Monsanto of the IARC’s determination months before it was made public,14 giving the company time to plan its defense, which included a vicious, coordinated attack on the IARC,15 going so far as to calling on the U.S. government to defund the organization, despite its reputation for being the global gold-standard for carcinogenicity studies.16
In January 2017, the American Chemistry Council formed a front group called Campaign for Accuracy in Public Health Research17(CAPHR), the express purpose of which is to discredit the IARC18 and seek to reform the IARC Monographs Program, which evaluates and determines the carcinogenicity of chemicals.
The day CAPHR launched, the organization took to Twitter with a #glyphosateisvital campaign, proclaiming the weed killer is essential to “maintain the production of safe, affordable food.” All of this goes to show you simply cannot trust the information you get from social media. Many industry defenders are nothing more than sock puppets paid to spread corporate propaganda while posing as independent experts and/or well-informed regular Joes.

Corporate Ghostwriters May Have Influenced US and European Regulators

Court documents also suggest Monsanto employees ghostwrote parts of two scientific reports — one in 2000 and another in 2013 — which the EPA then relied on to conclude glyphosate is non-carcinogenic.19
This, we are expected to believe, is better science than that of the IARC — a world-renowned, global, independent research organization. These ghostwritten reports may also have influenced the European Union’s (EU) decision that Roundup was safe. According to Euro Observer:20
“A Monsanto employee admits in one of the emails that the company wrote a study on glyphosate and later attributed the work to academics. Another study on glyphosate was 'redesigned' with help of company scientists in order to create a more [favorable] outcome, the internal emails suggest.
EUobserver and OneWorld have discovered that both of the studies were relied on by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) when it evaluated the safety of glyphosate in 2015 as part of the EU [license] renewal process.”
Correspondence also shows Rowland helped stop an investigation into glyphosate by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry on Monsanto’s behalf. According to the email, Rowland said he should “deserve a medal,” were he to pull it off.21,22,23 As it turns out, the review was in fact canceled, suggesting Rowland’s value to the company.
Indeed, emails suggest Monsanto was planning to lean on Rowland’s significant influence for their glyphosate defense after his retirement from the EPA,24 and Rowland’s post-EPA work indeed includes consulting for three chemical companies that are close associates of Monsanto.25,26

Dow Chemical Pulls Strings to Void Government Pesticide Findings

Monsanto clearly isn’t the only multinational company pulling strings within the U.S. government. During the Obama administration, the EPA concluded chlorpyrifos, a nerve gas-cum-pesticide made by Dow Chemical, which is widely used on citrus, applescherries and other crops, could pose health risks to consumers.
Even tiny doses were found to impact brain development in infants. A ban of the chemical’s use on food had been proposed, but the Trump-installed EPA chief, Scott Pruitt,27 recently denied the petition.28,29
Earth Justice called the decision "unconscionable," vowing to fight the decision in court. A major problem with this chemical is that it’s become a common water contaminant, and the EPA’s own evaluation found it poses serious risks to 1,778 of the 1,835 endangered plants and animals assessed.
Despite this damning evidence, a legal team representing Dow Chemical and two other organophosphate manufacturers sent letters30to the agencies responsible for joint enforcement of the Endangered Species Act,31,32,33 asking them to ignore the EPAs findings, saying the agency’s scientific basis was unreliable.
It’s interesting how on the one hand, Monsanto claims the EPA is the best judge of toxic chemicals when it suits them, while other industry giants accuse EPA scientists of not knowing what they’re doing when the evidence impacts their bottom line.
Bloomberg recently reported Dow Chemical’s first-quarter lobbying expenditures for 2017 are nearly eight times greater than its 2008 expenditures,34 and financial filings reveal the company hired a lobbying firm to meet with Congressmen in the weeks before the USDA’s and EPA’s deadline to take action on chlorpyrifos.
Trump also appointed Dow CEO Andrew Liveris to head a White House manufacturing council. All of that considered, is it any surprise that chlorpyrifos gets a free pass? With conflicts of interest such as these running the show, the health of Americans is in serious jeopardy. You simply cannot depend on government agencies to protect your best interests anymore.

International Reports Call for Global Phase Out of Pesticides

When you consider the volume of evidence against pesticides, it’s easy to understand why the chemical technology industry is so keen on having government promote their propaganda. They are losing the information war, so they’re upping the ante. Several heavy-hitting, international reports have surfaced in recent years, highlighting the serious impact agricultural chemicals are having on human health, including but not limited to the following:
According to a recent United Nations (UN) report,35 pesticides are responsible for 200,000 acute poisoning deaths each year, and chronic exposure has been linked to cancer, Alzheimer’sParkinson’s diseasehormone disruption, developmental disorders and sterility.36
The latest USDA report on pesticide residues in food reveals only 15 percent of all the food samples tested in 2015 were free from pesticide residues, compared to 41 percent the previous year.37 This goes to show just how quickly our food is being poisoned, and how significant a source food is when it comes to chemical exposures.
According to Dr. Joseph E. Pizzorno,38 founding president of the internationally recognized Bastyr University, toxins in the modern food supply are “a major contributor to, and in some cases the cause of, virtually all chronic diseases.”
The answer, the UN report says, is reducing or eliminating pesticides around the world. It proposes a global treaty to phase out toxic pesticides and transition to a more sustainable agricultural system. Contrary to industry PR, many studies have confirmed pesticide use can be significantly reduced without impacting production:39
A World Health Organization (WHO) report warns environmental pollution — which includes but is not limited to pesticides — kills 1.7 million children annually. To address this problem, the authors recommend reducing or phasing out agricultural chemicals
A report by the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics40 warns that chemical exposures, which includes pesticides, now represent a major threat to human health and reproduction41,42
An Endocrine Society task force has also issued a scientific statement43,44 on endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs, i.e., chemicals that alter the normal function of your hormones), noting that the health effects are such that everyone needs to take proactive steps to avoid them.
On the list of known EDCs are organophosphate pesticides and DDE, a breakdown product of DDT. Since it lingers in the environment, exposure still occurs via food even though DDT is no longer in use.
Exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals costs the European Union (EU) €157 billion ($172 billion) annually in women’s health care costs, infertility and male reproductive dysfunctions, birth defects, obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and neurobehavioral disorders45,46,47
One in 5 cancers are thought to be due to environmental chemicals and, according to recent studies, not only can miniscule amounts of chemicals amplify each other’s adverse effects when combined,48 this even applies to chemicals deemed “safe” on their own.
Basically, the analysis49 found that the cumulative effects of non-carcinogenic chemicals can act in concert to synergistically produce carcinogenic activity — a finding that overturns and more or less nullifies conventional testing for carcinogens 

Could Your Health Be at Risk From Glyphosate-Contaminated Food?

Glyphosate-contaminated food may pose serious health risks, and this is perhaps one of the greatest selling points of organic foods. Tests by the Organic Consumers Association (OCA) show 93 percent of Americans have glyphosate in their urine,50 and food is the biggest source unless you live in an agricultural area or dispense glyphosate-based chemicals at work or at home.
Contaminated drinking water is another. Disturbingly, a recent animal study51 found Roundup causes fatty liver disease at 0.1 parts per billion (ppb) in drinking water, which is 14,000 times lower than the concentration permitted in U.S. drinking water (700 ppb). According to Health Research Institute Laboratories, the average level of glyphosate in the U.S. population is 3.3 ppb52 — 33 times higher than the level at which rats developed fatty liver.
The OCA's urine testing also suggests Americans have a daily intake of glyphosate that is about 1,000-fold higher than the level found to cause fatty liver disease in animals. Another recent study found Roundup adversely affects the development of female rats' uteruses, increasing the risk for both infertility and uterine cancer.53 So why is no action taken to protect human health?
It really boils down to the fact that without glyphosate-based herbicides the GE seed business would collapse, and chemical technology companies, with their vast resources and revolving doors into government regulatory agencies, have managed to deceive people into thinking there's no problem.

How to Get Tested for Glyphosate

The USDA promised to begin testing food for residues of glyphosate as of April 1, but then canceled the plan,54 further delaying the truth about glyphosate contamination55 from emerging.
According to Health Research Institute Laboratories, desiccated crops such as non-GMO oats, wheat, garbanzo beans and lentils can contain glyphosate levels exceeding 1,000 ppb. I recently used this test for glyphosate and had no detectable levels — likely because I eat organic foods and rarely eat at restaurants.
The Health Research Institute has developed a glyphosate test kit for public use. I've recently gained access to a limited number of these kits, and no profit is made on their sale. I provide both a glyphosate water test kit and an environmental exposure test kit in my [Dr. Mercola's] online store for those who want to assess their exposure. 

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Why Is the Left Terrified of Trump?

President Trump strikes terror into the hearts of Liberals and Progressives. This terror manifests itself as anger clothed in the garb of righteous indignation. Every news cycle prompts fresh rounds of hand wringing and tears of frustration from the Left. Each new Presidential tweet provokes apoplexy. You can see the fear and anger on the faces of Progressive marchers, town hall protesters, and pop culture icons. You can hear it in the strained questions of reporters at press briefings and the opinions of pundits at round-tables. 

The target of this Trump-terror is broader than the President and his staff--it affects every one of us. Those who voted against Trump have not settled down post-election, but continue to rage, rage, rage against the Trump machine. Those who voted for Trump now stand in for the Administration as localized whipping boys of Liberal indignation, buffeting wave after wave of hyperbolic sidewalk insults. Ask anyone who wears a certain red ball cap how it feels.

One of my best and dearest friends said a ridiculous thing to me at my brother's funeral. After many touching tributes to David's selfless devotion to others, my friend said to me, "I'm surprised your brother was so active in charity work and the mission field--I thought he was a Republican." Tempers quickly flared, words like "Trump" and "racist" were exchanged, and he and his partner left in a huff.  By the time I got home, there was an email cancelling an upcoming visit, signed "Best Regards."
David Puett teaching orphans in Brazil.
David Puett repairing water pump at Malawi orphange.
David Puett and his buddies at Malawi orphanage.
No doubt about it--the schism between Left and Right is deep, and we can make sense of it in terms of the Simple Explanation's meme exchange dynamics

First, a simple explanation of memes:  memes are simply the meaning of bits of communication, whether the meaning is carried by a word, an image, or any other way we communicate meaning to one another.  If you need a better explanation of memes, please read the "When Meme Chords Collide" article from 2015 .

The memes we cling to form sets of memes that I call "meme bundles." The totality of our meme bundles form the belief system we hold. The more your meme bundle overlaps with someone else's meme bundle, the more kinship you feel with that other person. The less your meme bundles overlap, the less you have in common and the greater your distrust of one another.

Oftentimes, belief systems, or "meme bundles" aren't held by individuals alone, but are shared with other people and with institutions we belong to. Not only do we share memes with others, it is the job of institutions to maintain the integrity of their meme bundles by keeping believers in and non-believers out.  From my 2011 article, "Meaning is in the Memes"

"I realized the other day that each and every cultural institution we belong to (family, workplace, church, mosque, tribe, nation, etc.) not only comes with its own bundle of shared memes held in common by its members, it also comes with a filter that prevents members from acknowledging or adopting incompatible memes. Memes are even more important to an institution than its members in the sense that members come and go, but memes persist." 

"Institutions are defined as much by their excluded memes as they are by their included memes. An exclusive institution holds tightly to the identity provided by its memes; its border is strong and its filter powerful. An inclusive institution allows members more latitude in the memes they may hold; its border is less defined; its filter less opaque. An "open-minded" institution acknowledges the fact that there are memes out there in the greater culture that may have value, and is willing to consider new memes; its border is permeable and its filter thin." 

When you view politics through the lens of the Simple Explanation's theory of meme exchange, today's turmoil begins to make sense.  Seems obvious, but here it is:  The Left and the Right hold different meme bundles that appear to be mutually exclusive.  In other words, if I like people who like the memes I like, then I am made uneasy by people who reject the memes I hold. And vice versa. And the more polarized politics becomes, the less my meme bundle is likely to overlap your meme bundle. 

Furthermore, Conservatives have less permeable boundaries than Liberals--it is their function to "conserve." Liberals have more open, permeable boundaries because it is their function to welcome new memes. Conservatives are less likely to welcome foreign memes and those who hold foreign memes. Conservatives expect newcomers to adopt American memes. The open/closed aspect of Right and Left is not a moral short-coming of either side; it is their essential character and mandate. 

I think the extreme emotionality of politics today stems from not respecting one another's meme bundles.  Does holding exclusive meme bundles bring the end of civility? Not if we allow one another our beliefs.  Clashes over meme bundles only occurs when others are forced to adopt memes they do not hold. "Live and let live" is the only motto that assures peace among those who disagree. 

"Live and let live" acknowledges that there is more than one way to view reality. "Live and let live" acknowledges that someone else with another point of view may actually have a respectable meme bundle--just not one you happen to hold.  In other words, it is possible to disagree with someone, yet still respect their moral integrity and their right to their beliefs.

"Live and let live" is a meme that ensures civility amongst competing institutions.  "My way is the only way--death to all others" is a meme that ensures strife and warfare. Totalitarianism is the attempt to eradicate all meme bundles (and their believers) that differ from the tyrant's.

This American election cycle has brought an unprecedented level of mistrust between the Right and Left because they no longer appear to have anything in common. But is that really true? Not really.  We all share the same basic memes in common--Truth, Justice, Love, Family Values are just a few of the memes shared by the Left and Right. Most importantly for our country, we all agree that we want a functioning federal government and laws fairly applied all. We all, Left and Right, sign on to the Constitution and the Bill of Rights--which are our founders meme bundles written down. What we fear from the "other side" is that they don't really believe those founders' memes. And it is that fear that inspires such mistrust.  

The reason for the mistrust is the rhetoric, not the reality. The Left says terrible things about President Trump. The hyperbole, the exaggeration of fault, the accusations of treachery--these are rhetorical devices designed to emphasize Trump's supposedly crazy, self-centered meme bundle. The problem with this rhetoric is that it paints an unrealistic version of Trump's memes that are over-the-top evil. In the vacuum of Trump's vaguely-defined policy memes or omissions of fact, the Left impugns the President with memes of pure devilry from their own imagination. It is important to realize that the rhetoric is not the reality--it is an interpolation of imagination borne out of fear.

I wish there were some way to reassure my friends on the Left that most of what they fear is hyperbole and not fact. Time will tell whether the Administration's motives lie in their public declarations or not. The proof lies in a "wait and see" approach. It's my belief that the gap between the Left's meme bundle and the President's is not nearly so large as they fear. 

Monday, February 20, 2017

What is A Simple Explanation of Absolutely Everything?

If that's not a catchy blog post title, I don't know what is.

Yesterday I reread my author's preface to the Simple Explanation book's 2nd Edition, which was published in 2015, in both paperback and as a kindle ebook. It's a good introduction to the Simple Explanation theory of everything, and I don't think it has ever appeared here on the blog.  

Reading this may help put things into perspective.

A Simple Explanation of Absolutely Everything came to me during the winter of 2009. I was contemplating an entirely different project when, much to my delight, the Simple Explanation presented itself on the page, diagrams and all.

A Simple Explanation begins by turning the ordinary  view of consciousness on its head. Whereas most scientists believe consciousness is a by-product of the brain, I propose that consciousness is the ground state of the universe, here long before there were any brains. 

Using only four basic principles, A Simple Explanation describes our universe as a fractal pattern of consciousness that repeats itself in endless cycles of information, organization, and cooperation, from the smallest quanta through the largest astronomical objects. 

In 1979 I first read Itzhak Bentov’s book, Stalking the Wild Pendulum, wherein Bentov first proposed a torus-shaped,  universal consciousness.

About a year into writing the Simple Explanation blog, I realized that what I call the conscious “fractal” universe is very similar to the meme Bentov identified as the conscious “holographic” universe. By holographic, Bentov referred to the fact that any small fragment of a holographic image can be used to reproduce the entire image out of which the fragment came. 

The same can be said of fractal patterns: the fractal formula repeats itself at both upwardly-larger and downwardly-smaller scales so that any fragment at any scale of the fractal’s image reflects an eerily repetitive pattern. If you don’t know what a fractal is, relax; lots more about fractals later.

As for the tori, I’ve been doodling them in the margins of papers and inscribing them on notes and cards since I first read Bentov’s book. I even embroidered two tori into the pattern of a house blessing back in 1982, and I’ve been meditating on the torus ever since.

Cross-stitched House Blessing, 1982.

Close-up of House Blessing. Note the two green and gold tori flanking the center florets.
Cyd Ropp, chalk torus

Cyd Ropp, slinky torus

When I first began writing the Simple Explanation blog, it was tough finding images of a torus online, so I drew my own using colored chalk. In the past couple of years, images of tori have blossomed online, including quite a few of my own. 2012 even saw the release of a feature film called “Thrive,” promoting egalitarian reform through free toroidal energy. 

The Simple Explanation of this sudden whirlwind of tori is that we are all resonating to and concurrently invoking the same torus from the universe’s shared transpersonal consciousness. And the more we each individually explore and tap out this meme, the stronger it becomes, because memes are starved through lack of usage and reinforced through invocation.

If you don’t know what a “torus” is, don’t worry. This book will explain all that. Same thing with other unusual words like “fractal,”  “meme,” and “transpersonal consciousness.” You don’t need to be a philosopher or a Yogi to grasp the Simple Explanation. You don’t even need a college degree. All you need is an open mind and a willingness to think new thoughts. So go slow. I’m going to explain every Simple Explanation idea over and over, in various ways, throughout this short book. 
Cyd Ropp, Universal Torus

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Criticism of Psychiatry reprint

Here's an interesting article I'm reprinting from Keith Scott-Mumby's newsletter:

[Keith Scott-Mumby wrote:]
Issue 202 | Date: February 17, 2017
Psychiatrists Are The Real Screwballs
I’m not so sure about the patients but I am sure about the doctors: psychiatrists are just nuts!
They have a fantasy diagnosis system that is not based on any real-world objective test. Not one. Not any! It’s shocking to grasp this but you need to know… it’s true.
The so-called “bible” of psychiatry, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual or DSM (currently number 5 or V), lists over 300 conditions, not one of which exists in reality.
OK, I’m kidding slightly. But not one of those diagnoses can be proved, therefore in a sense they are not real. It’s all opinion. There is no definitive blood test, x-ray, scan result, urine change or microscope visual that can establish any of the 300 conditions.
That’s why you can visit one psychiatrist, who says you’re depressed; another says you have anxiety neurosis; and a third (if you are unlucky) will try to tell you that you have signs of schizophrenia. But none of these experts will look at some     lab work and say, “This shows you have XYZ condition.” I repeat: there are no such tests.
Yet these people are dishing out some of the heaviest, most destructive “therapies” known: toxic chemicals, including SSRIs, electroshock convulsion treatment and, yes, they are still doing lobotomies in some barbaric places (ie. Great Britain and The United States of America!)
British psychiatrist Maurice Partridge, who conducted a follow-up study of 300 lobotomy patients, said that the treatment achieved its effects by "reducing the complexity of psychic life". Following the operation, spontaneity, responsiveness,     self-awareness and self-control were reduced. Activity was replaced by inertia, and people were left emotionally blunted and restricted in their intellectual range. 
In other words the patients is wrecked but complains less. For “reducing the complexity of psychic life” read: cabbage state.
Based on the fact that they have no workable diagnostic system, they have no right to treat anything. Yet they subsume the right to destroy brain tissue permanently and blunt the whole purpose of living.
Holistic Psychiatry?
I complain that they do not have any lab work. But in fact they do! It is my assertion that over 95% of so-called “mental illness” is caused by undiagnosed and untreated physical disorders, namely food allergies, heavy metal inflammation, nutritional deficiencies, hormonal imbalances and hidden stealth pathogens.
So the real treatment becomes obvious: fix the physical problem. Do not label the person as a mental case and treat him or her with frightful chemicals under the guise of medicines.
I’m shortly finishing up a book on Holistic Psychiatry (that’s its working title), which goes into these many treatable disorders which can underpin mental symptoms.
I mean, just take hormones…. Any woman of menstruating age can report that a change in hormones can signal severe, even extreme, mental changes. Ask a man! It’s been a joke of mine for decades that “a lot of men suffer from pre-menstrual tension!”
Does it mean a woman becomes a lunatic every month? I don’t think so.
The point is that we do not need a Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of supposed disorders. We really need a book of causes.
An effective manual of psychiatry would list food allergies as probably the main condition; there would be a chapter on hormones; another chapter on nutritional deficiencies (very common, even if the overfed West); and a chapter on parasites and stealth pathogens.
There would also be a chapter on cool procedures to pull people out of psychic trauma—trauma and abuse does exist, of course. But:
1.    Is not a mental illness, even when incapacitating (see 2.)
2.    Need not be permanent, if dealt with properly
3.    Should not be treated with addictive chemicals that create ongoing dysfunctionality
Let’s do what the math teacher calls factorization. The treatment of depression due to food allergies (I’ve cured over a thousand such) is change the diet; the treatment of depression due to low thyroid function is supplement (replace) the thyroid hormones; the treatment of depression due to B vitamin deficiency is to supplement the vitamins; the treatment of depression due to Lyme’s is antibiotics to kill the spirochete (I’m talking real Lyme’s: an infection with Borrelia burgdorferi).
Take out the common factor, which is “depression”, and you are left with a series of proper diagnoses and we do not need the word depression at all!
Can’t Diagnose Sanity, Never Mind Mental Illness
OK, let’s lighten up and have some fun. A couple weeks ago, sitting reading in Waikiki, I came across an interesting experiment. The book calls itself The Untold Story of Psychiatry and is by Jeffrey A. Lieberman, MD. He’s obviously a shrink and takes the orthodox point of view. Not a vitamin or whole food in the entire book!
The article that caught my eye, referred to by Lieberman, took place in 1973 (long before I came to the States). It was published in the prestigious journal Science and was titled “On Being Sane In Insane Places.” The author was David Rosenhan, a lawyer, not an MD (he had a degree in psychology though).
The opening sentence of Rosenhan’s article was “If sanity and insanity exist, how shall we know them?” Good question!
He proposed to investigate psychiatry’s take on this important issue by sending sane, well-balanced and otherwise “normal” individuals into mental hospitals, to see if they were spotted as sane and sent home.
Unbeknownst to the hospital staffs, Rosenhan engineered the secret admission of eight totally normal individuals. They used fake identities and varied their profession from the real ones. At each hospital, they telephoned ahead for an appointment and when they arrived they complained of hearing voices and had been primed to say three words: “empty”, “hollow” and “thud”.
Each of the fake patients was a voluntary admission, by the way. Each was instructed to say they no longer heard voices and to start behaving totally normally, once they reached the psychiatric ward. The result?
All but one of the planted cases were diagnosed as schizophrenic! They were locked up from 7 – 52 days (brave fellows!)
Rosenhan’s conclusion: We cannot distinguish the sane from the insane in mental hospitals.
Predictably there was widespread outrage and derision from the public at large. Some of my older subscribers may even remember this outcry (1973).
But Rosenhan wasn’t done yet! The furor that he evoked suggested a further chance to humiliate the psychiatrists! He issued a new challenge to one of the hospitals, which unwisely accepted: “Over the coming year, I will send in another round of impostors into your hospital. You try to detect them, knowing full well that they will be coming, and at the end of the year, we will see how many you catch.”
From a total intake of 193 patients over the subsequent year, the staff identified 41 possible fake patients. To which Rosenhan gleefully announced that he had not sent in a single imposter! So he declared that, given psychiatry’s inability to tell sane from insane individuals, they were clearly incompetent.
It resulted in the medical insurance companies, like Aetna and Blue Cross, slashing the mental health benefits in their policies. Their complaint, apart from the absurdity of being unable to identify true mental illness, was that in this one specialty, only the patient and psychiatrist could ever know what medical services were provided and why.
I laughed so much, I nearly spilled my Mai Tai!
To your continuing mental health!
Dr. Keith Scott-Mumby
The Official Alternative Doctor
www.alternative-doctor.com
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