Monday, August 27, 2012

Gold-plated psychiatry? Ha!

The August 26 edition of the Southtown Star, a neighborhood newspaper in Chicago, includes a letter from one Cornell Hudson of Steger.

Mr. Hudson complains that U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-2nd) is receiving the best medical care in the world from the Mayo Clinic, which most of his constituents could never afford.  He continues, "Because of a recent lack of funding, his constituents can no longer visit the recently closed community mental health center that has served the South Side for 37 years. Had Jackson sought care from this center, it might still be open."

But community mental health centers, and state institutions like Tinley Park Mental Health Center, are being closed because the people of Illinois simply do not want to pay for this garbage any more. Psychiatry has clearly failed to reduce mental illness by operating under a medical model, given the opportunity of almost unlimited funding for at least two generations. Arguably, the total efforts of the mental health orthodoxy have dramatically increased the incidence of mental illness and disability!

This is no great mystery, or rocket science. What's happening is, the state's broke, and it's absolutely going to stop wasting money on many worthwhile things, let alone on utter nonsense.

Take Cornell Hudson's sarcastic statements literally for a moment. How many of Jesse Jackson's constituents would just happily "visit" the old community mental health center? Most of those who ever found themselves there as "patients", I guarantee, were under some sort of duress. They might just as likely be thrilled that they never have to go back there again.

Perhaps Mr. Hudson is upset that he can no longer get a family member drugged out of difficult-to-manage behavior for free. Or maybe he's just upset about the bum who is ensconced more often on the corner by his house. That doesn't mean that these individuals ever wanted or needed the neuroleptic poisons which were dispensed by the community mental health center.

It also doesn't mean that Jesse Jackson Jr. will ever benefit from the so-called "treatment" he's getting for his so-called "mood disorder" at Mayo. If I were to bet my own money, I'd say Jackson's political career, if not his life, is over unless he can extract himself from the machine trying to "diagnose" and "treat" him.

There's one other bet I would make. I attended one of the public meetings on the closing of Tinley Park Mental Health Center, and I was struck by the total disconnect between the media coverage of the situation and the obvious reality. So-called "consumers of mental health services" were NOT the the people protesting closure: unionized state mental health workers were.

So I'll wager that Cornell Hudson is a member of AFSCME, or a paid lobbyist.

Monday, August 13, 2012


OK, here's a simple question for any and all criminal defense attorneys:

Out of your last 100 cases, how many defendants never had any contact at all with the mental health system or a mental health professional before they were arrested?

This can be an educated guess, or a careful survey of files. I would bet dollars to donuts that the actual percentage is pretty low. We could also ask:

Out of your last 10 cases of violent crime, how many defendants had never taken psychiatric drugs before they were arrested?

If you're not a criminal lawyer, ask one you know these questions. I would love to get a good volume of data.

I think psychiatry creates crime.