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Psychiatry Continues to Harm
Psychiatry Continues to Harm
23 May 2006
By Jeanyne Wanner
Psychiatrists claim that people who experience certain feelings or
behaviors are sick, that they are "mentally ill" with an incurable
disease of the brain. These feelings and behaviors are organized into
lists, promoted as "symptoms" in order to align with a medical model
of disease. A person only has to have more than half of the "symptoms"
on a particular list to get a permanent diagnosis of disease. Being
"diagnosed", another medical term co-opted by psychiatry, with one of
these "mental illnesses" is reported to carry a sort of stigma. No one
wants to be told that his brain is abnormal, that it will always be
so, and that he should become a life-long mental "patient" to treat
The Oxford Concise Dictionary defines the word "stigma" as "a mark or
sign of disgrace or discredit." Psychiatry uses this stigma, in order
to coerce or shame people into becoming life-long customers. This
multi-billion-dollar PR campaign to convince the public that these
illnesses are real is part of psychiatry's long-term, several-pronged
assault on mankind, calculated to forward their ever-advancing thrust
of destructive ideas into our daily lives.
According to the National Institute of Mental Illness' website, "An
estimated 26.2 percent of Americans ages 18 and older … suffer from a
diagnosable mental disorder in a given year. …this figure translates
to 57.7 million people."
We know that currently in this country there are over 8 million
children on prescription psychiatric medications and the psychiatric
community is working hard to convince us that many more are in need of
their services, even babies.
Psychiatry, and their willing cohorts in the pharmaceutical business,
created the stigma. Then they run a public campaign of "We must remove
the stigma from mental illness" in order to find more who will accept
the label and accept the profitable treatment.
The psychiatric community can be seen influencing and working in the
government to increase the number of mental patients as early as 1977.
President Carter's Mental Health Commission, urged Americans to bring
their mental and emotional problems "out of the closet" and end the
"stigma." Moving forward, an article in the Seattle Times in July of
2003 cited "Stigma" surrounding mental illness as a major barrier to
Taken at face value this would certainly seem like a reasonable
appeal. What sane, caring individual could possibly want to compound
the burdens of the "mentally ill" by stigmatizing them? My guess is
very few. But is de-stigmatizing mental illness for humanitarian
reasons really psychiatry's intent? Or is it something much more
sinister and selfish?
It is a given that Public Relations is a very powerful and persuasive
tool. It can be used for good or bad purposes. The strength of PR
relies in large part on some part of its message being true. When one
holds up a truth that is self-evident one generally gets agreement.
The Psychiatric PR Machine has learned that they can associate some
lies, half-truths and misrepresentations with a little bit of the
truth and the public will generally accept the deceptions as true.
"Mental illness should be de-stigmatized" is true. "People should be
able to get help for their difficulties and have workable solutions
available to them," is also true. "Psychiatry offers workable
solutions for the mentally ill masses," is a lie. It is a lie
positioned with truth and it therefore seems, in the eyes of many, to
Perhaps there should be no stigma connected to mental illness. There
should however, be stigma connected to the solutions that psychiatry
proffers in the name of help which are destructive of individuals and
society: mind-altering drugs, stigmatizing labels, shock treatment and
abuse of human rights for profit.
Some 200 legal actions have been filed against Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and
GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturers of Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil,
respectively, to recover for suicides or homicides – some completed,
some only attempted—by patients in the first few days or weeks after
they were prescribed one of these drugs. – ClassActionAmerican.com
Why is it that one never hears from a psychiatrist about such workable
solutions as nutrition, tutoring, legitimate medical examinations, and
change of environment? Why do nearly all their solutions come in a
bottle with an FDA black box warning label? Moreover, dozens of
genuine, verifiable medical illnesses cause some of the exact symptoms
listed by psychiatry as "mental". Once a psychiatric label is applied,
without requirement of any objective, medical tests, no one performs
the medical testing to find these physical illnesses.
The powerful, mind-altering drugs will alter the feelings and
behaviors. This is certain. However, even psychiatrists admit that
they do not know why the drugs work as they do and no long-term
testing is ever done, especially with the drugs used on young
Children. "Ritalin (prescribed to millions of kids) and amphetamine
(speed) have almost identical adverse effects on the brain, mind and
behavior, including the production of drug-induced behavioral
disorders, psychosis, mania, drug abuse, and addiction," says Billy J.
Sahley, PhD, author of Is Ritalin Necessary?
Could it be that labeling an individual with a "disorder" from the DSM
(Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) is the only
way that psychiatrists can make a living? The belief of the existence
of these "disorders" is the basis for receiving money from insurance
companies, research grants, charitable foundations, etc.
If a psychiatrist sends a child who is acting up in school to see a
nutritionist or for tutoring, how would he make any money? If he
labels the same child with "ADHD", he is creating a patient for life.
Backing up that viewpoint are recent articles in USA Today, the New
York Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Washington Post and countless
other major newspapers which revealed the hidden financial connection
between big Pharmaceutical Companies and the authors of the Diagnostic
and Statistical manual. The DSM manual is the self-proclaimed bible of
psychiatry and it is the very foundation that psychiatrists use to
label people with over 370+ various mental "disorders". Not only were
the majority of psychiatric panel members that created the DSM
receiving funding from drug companies in one way or another but for
some specific disorders, the entire panel of "experts" had direct
connections to pharmaceutical monies.
"ADHD is a controversial diagnosis with little or no scientific or
medical basis. A parent, teacher, or doctor can feel in good company
when utterly dismissing the diagnosis and refusing to apply it to
children" – Bill J. Sahley, PhD author of "Is Ritalin Necessary?"
Why are there so many people labeled mentally ill?
The more you look, the more obvious it should become that no amount of
political correctness or de-stigmatizing of mental illness will make
wrong solutions right! Fictitious labels and murderous drugging for
profit are not humanitarian activities no matter how you look at it.
In an interview with Jay Baadsgaard, Washington State Director of the
International Coalition for Drug Awareness, he related to me how his
teenage son Corey had walked into his high school English class with a
rifle. He was found afterward to be in diminished capacity due to an
abrupt discontinuation of Paxil and a significant dose of Effexor. He
had no memory of what had transpired. Fortunately, he did not hurt
anyone. Ten families from across the United States have joined forces
to bring wrongful death and personal injury suits against the drug
giant Wyeth alleging that their respective family members committed
impulsive acts of violence - mostly suicides-or attempted them-shortly
after taking Wyeth's best-selling drug, Effexor. - Justice Seekers.com
When I asked Mr. Baadsgaard how this was originally presented to him
he said that it was presented it to him as a "normal biological
Yes. Let's de-stigmatize "mental illness" and make sure everyone knows
that mental illness is a normal thing, that way we can all receive
And no one would like to "help" your children more than Teenscreen.
Now cropping up in schools across the nation, Teenscreen, the
psychiatric/ pharmaceutical marketing contrivance, carefully packaged
as an innocent and well-meaning way to "save" our hapless children
from suicide, is busy trying to garner new patients out of our schools
with the rallying cry of remove the "stigma" and save your children.
But what solutions do they offer? After your child is "screened" and
evaluated and most likely found to be possessed of one or more "mental
illnesses" out of the DSM what then? "Treatment" is just a
prescription away and your child could be headed down the path of
other children like Kip Kinkle, Chris Pittman, Sam Manzie, Patrick
Purdy and countless others who have taken their own lives or the lives
of others while on psychiatric medication purported to `help" them.
It's not hard to understand why the pharmaceutical companies have
pumped so much money into "Teenscreen" and another suicide screening
program called "Signs of Suicide"
"Antidepressants increased the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior
(suicidality) in short-term studies in children and adolescents with
Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and other psychiatric disorders.
Anyone considering the use of Effexor XR or any other antidepressant
in a child or adolescent must balance this risk..." - Wyeth
Laboratories Website - warning
De-stigmatize mental health? Perhaps; but not so that Psychiatry can
commit its nefarious acts of "caring" on our children or our society
"Ritalin and other brain stimulants create severe biochemical
imbalances. Stimulants do not normalize the brain; they render it
abnormal. Stimulants produce pathological malfunctions in the child's
brain." - Dr. Peter Breggin in his book Talking back to Ritalin.
Flanking the efforts of Teenscreen is the PR assault from the
psychiatric/pharmaceutical front group, NAMI, the National Alliance on
Mental Illness. Purportedly an independent organization of brain
injury and mental illness advocates, they are working hard to convince
us that unless we subscribe to their views and their solutions to
"mental illness we are all just insensitive and callous individuals
bent on marginalizing the mentally ill. This is the red herring that
sunk the tuna boat!
In its "Stigma Buster" electronic newsletter alerts, NAMI urges its
members to "Contact sponsors personally". Explain the meaning of
stigma and the fact that the U.S. Surgeon General and President Bush
have made its elimination a public health priority. (December 2004
alert) ……contact local newspaper editors and television news
directors. Educate them about stigma and your concerns. ….work to
recruit them into sponsors of NAMIWalks or other events….." PR, PR,
If we trace the line from NAMI to Teenscreen we will see that NAMIs
former Executive Director, Laurie Flynn is now the Executive director
of Teen Screen and pharmaceutical money has followed her to her new
According to internal documents obtained by Mother Jones, 18 drug
firms gave NAMI a total of $11.72 million between 1996 and mid-1999.
These include Janssen ($2.08 million), Novartis ($1.87 million),
Pfizer ($1.3 million), Abbott Laboratories ($1.24 million),
Wyeth-Ayerst Pharmaceuticals ($658,000), and Bristol-Myers Squibb
"In 1999 alone, Lilly will have delivered $1.1 million in quarterly
installments, with the lion's share going to help fund NAMI's
"Campaign to End Discrimination" against the mentally ill." – Mother
"NAMI's Flynn says her group is "not a captive of any outside
industry." But she acknowledges there is "at times" [sic] a "synergy"
in goals between NAMI and the drug companies" – Mother Jones Magazine
– November/December 1999
There is a line here that has been blurred. It has been a deliberate
and calculated blurring and its authors have taken no quarter. What
the psychiatric/pharmaceutical PR machine says and what it does are
diametrically opposed. Have compassion, de-stigmatize mental illness,
help your fellow man, are not the same as "drugs are the answer"
though that is what they would have you believe.
Compassion is not simpering tolerance of destructive solutions, so as
not to offend, nor is it condemnation of the whole human race to
satisfy the authoritative proclamations of psychiatry or the twisted
agendas of big Pharma.
"There are no tests available for assessing the chemical status of a
living person's brain." No "biochemical, anatomical, or functional
signs have been found that reliably distinguish the brains of mental
patients. The theories are held on to not only because there is
nothing else to take their place, but also because they are useful in
promoting drug treatment." -- Elliot Valenstein, Ph.D., author of
Blaming the Brain
By pushing their ceaseless PR line, psychiatry stigmatizes mankind
himself, with abuse degradation and death. And in arrogant assignment
of all of mans frailties and idiosyncrasies to the category of
"disorders," psychiatry impugns his character and his resolve and
takes from him his God-given right to meet life's challenges on his
"The time when psychiatrists considered that they could cure the
mentally ill is gone. In the future the mentally ill will have to
learn to live with their illness/" – Dr. Norman Sartorius, former
president of the World Psychiatric Association, 1994
Despite what they would have you believe, Man is not the sum of all
his difficulties or his sorrows. His triumphs and trials are not the
result of so many chemical reactions in his brain and he should not be
viewed nor held sway by the lowest common denominators of his humanity
– his own self-doubts, and demons.
Yes, men and women, even children, do sometimes need help. Certainly
there are enough people who suffer from unwanted feelings and
behaviors, whatever the cause, to prove this point. But the answers
lie elsewhere than in the pages of the DSM or the bottles of
anti-depressants, anti-psychotics and stimulants now touted as the
"cure" for being human.
Jeanyne Wanner is a freelance writer and activist living in Florida
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