Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Guys! You should refuse to tolerate me, publicly or privately...

I'll start out this article by apologizing for my recent relative absence. It has been several months since I've published an article here, and I know EMHC employees have probably been pining away, anticipating my latest words of wisdom or insult, for far too long.

Two discoveries motivated my (gracious, I hope) return today.

The first was the fact that one earlier article (my discussion of MRT back in October, 2016) received very positive reviews, and stimulated excellent conversation among Drew Beck, Faisa Kareemi, Hasina Javed, and several others. 

I should probably clarify something for Drew. I was not agreeing with psychiatry in opposition to MRT, or with MRT in opposition to psychiatry, in that article. My point, rather, was that patients at EMHC are required, simultaneously or within a continuing process of "recovery", to profess full faith and belief in two directly contradictory concepts.

Such an incoherent demand on drug-suppressed cognition is probably not quite as destructive as, e.g., years of sexual abuse at the hands of "beneficent" captors, or a forced pregnancy.... But it surely can inspire profound distrust.

Right, Drew? You said you had been making the same arguments in my blog article on MRT yourself, for a long time. I was very happy to find out we were on the same page, in a sense, philosophically. And, it seems to me that MRT is not quite seen as the panacea that it might once have been. years ago, at Elgin. Maybe that's a joint, small victory that you and I can share some pride in?

On the other hand Drew, you were baffled about how I could agree with psychiatry if I didn't believe in mental illness. First of all, I'm a lawyer. Thus, I'm trained to agree with almost any idea for a moment or two, just in order to better understand and more effectively refute it.

But I honestly was not favoring the psychiatric view (that people only do bad things because their brain chemistry is out of tune) over the MRT view (that people have to admit being evil and repent), in my article. I think both sides of that argument are impractical.

I should also hasten to add, FYI, that there is no Scientology belief that "mental illness does not exist." The relevant Scientology belief, as it is clearly stated in the published Creed of the Church, and as I explained more fully in the first article I ever published on this blog, is "That the study of the Mind and the healing of mentally caused ills should not be alienated from religion or condoned in non-religious fields." Either educate yourself, or be more polite!

Which brings me to the second discovery that motivated this article, especially it's title.

A February 24, 2022 article in Psychiatric News is entitled, "Let's End the Destructive Habit of Doubting Psychiatric Illness." The author is Daniel Morehead, M.D., a veritable scion of the royal American psychiatric establishment. His rather aggressive admonition to  all of you mental health professionals is, you sure better toe the line, actively defend the psychiatric faith, and never tolerate people who don't believe in it (like me); in fact, you'd better fight all those crazy anti-psychiatrists (like me)!

The article itself is transparently weak and illogical as an argument. But it makes up for that with sheer aggression and fear mongering. 

Morehead doesn't seem able to acknowledge that "medical" is not exactly the same concept as "real". He appears to think mental illness being "real" is the same issue as mental illness being "medical". But in fact, the only way to tell if something is medical is by asking yourself whether medicine treats it. An obvious example is homicide: do we give the perpetrator anti-psychotic drugs, or prison? If we give her drugs, then the homicide was a medical issue; if we give her prison, it wasn't. Only our actions and opinions after the fact provide the distinction. However, either way the homicide was real.

He also conflates "biologically abnormal" with "damaging". But surely a marathoner who runs 26.2 miles in two hours is biologically abnormal, although his ability is not damaging.

Morehead also seems to have no question whatsoever about whether psychiatric "treatment" is a categorically wonderful thing, even in the face of so much evidence that, e.g., disability due to mental illness has continued to increase rapidly in the last half century, and that people diagnosed with schizophrenia are much more likely to fully recover in third-world countries where drugs are not available for it.

I think most mental health professionals would feel nervous reading the argument in this article. It's too childishly shrill, even when you don't consciously identify the precise logical errors and missing or contrary evidence. The first time I read it, I seriously considered that it might actually be satire.

However, Morehead has impact. What he does, really, is declare war on anti-psychiatry. He demands that all mental health professionals must recognize the danger posed by people like me.

Morehead says you guys should refuse to tolerate me. What's unreal about that is, you already recognize me as a human being who might be tolerable. You even agree with me sometimes, or find me interesting. Drew Beck, Faisa Kareemi, Hasina Javed and others liked my article about MRT. Years ago, an EMHC psychiatrist told her boss, "Mr. Kretchmar is a valuable part of our treatment team!" (I thought that was a bit exaggerated, but I didn't mind.)

Hey, it's true that I'm a long-time Scientologist. But I also have plenty of credentials as a tolerable person: college degree, license to practice law in Illinois, a wife of 46 years, three kids and three grandkids, dogs, a nice house and neighbors who are all good friends, good Scotch whiskey.... 

It would be a pretty safe bet that any one of you would find it far more natural to come over to my house for a Fourth of July party, than to "refuse to tolerate" me, as Daniel Morehead demands that you must.

Morehead is a fanatic. I think you guys can read his call to arms and recognize that. The top of the food chain in psychiatry, those arrogant, racist leaders like Jeffrey "freak of nature" Lieberman (and perhaps a couple M.D. psychiatrists at EMHC, whose initials could be JPC, RM, SH), are just delusional. I don't believe they'll get many of you to enlist.

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