November 17, 2012

Crisis: Chomsky & Greenwald + Hooper vs Wessely

    1. Chomsky & Greenwald on the decline of the rule of law

    2. Professor Hooper vs professor Wessely
PS. My eye problems


The present Nederlog consists of a link to a talk with Noam Chomsky and Glenn Greenwald of a little over a year ago, and the text of professor Hooper's protest against a reward given to professor Wessely.

1. Chomsky & Greenwald on the decline of the rule of law
Yesterday - today uploaded again in a better formatted version - I linked to a speech given by Glenn Greenwald in July of this year and commented some. Today I provide a link to another video
In fact, this is from October 2011, and seems to have been part of publicity for Greenwald's book "Liberty and justice for Some", which I haven't read. The format is that Greenberg and Chomsky both say something in the first half hour  about themes treated in "Liberty and justice for Some", after which members of the audience ask questions.

I found it interesting and worth listening to, especially the first half hour, which is mostly about the decline of the rule of law in the US, that indeed has resulted in
"Liberty and justice for Some": If you are rich, your liberties will be protected and you have a very good chance on a very lenient treatment if you break the law; if you belong to the government, you can break the US law and be praised and thanked for it - but if you are not rich and do not serve the government, you may be punished very severely for quite minor offenses.

That is not "the rule of law" as this phrase has been understood for many decades, which was that the same laws apply in the same ways to all, regardless of one's income or social position.

2. Professor Hooper on professor Wessely

I did not know that the publication "Nature" is a natural conduit for sadism under editor Philip Campbell, but apparently it now is. At least, the editor seems to be very proud and pleased to give professor Wessely a price. I may return later to this.

Here and now I provide a link to professor Hooper's reaction, that I recommend in Philip Campbell's attention [*]:

Professor Simon Wessely’s award of the inaugural John Maddox Prize for his courage in the field of ME and Gulf War Syndrome 

Professor Malcolm Hooper (with members of the ME community)     12th  November 2012

The reason I only provide a link is that the person(s) who made the original html for professor Hooper seem not to know that internet addresses, if provided as text, are printed on one line, and therefore expand a text box - a html-table - like the one I use here, and in this case to such an extent I cannot use it at all.

Alas, I therefore can't use the text I found and I also don't have the eyes to straighten this out, and hence I can only provide the link.

I'll see what I can do about this, for I like professor Hooper's text, and I find it quite ludicrous or contemptible - it depends on the motivation, that I don't know - that a journal like "Nature" supports someone like Wessely.


Maarten Maartensz

P.S. My eye problems

There will be a new PS, probably with another name. In any case, the eye problems are diagnosed
as keratoconjunctivitis sicca, quite possibly as a part of Sjoegren's syndrome, which is a fairly common complication of ME/CFS, but also exists independently from ME/CFS.

[*] I doubt it will make much of a difference: Few have the character to publicly admit mistakes. But let me repeat for Mr Campbell's benefit: I have been medically diagnosed three times with ME/CFS, in the medical, not the psychiatric sense; a disease which is to this day a neurological disease, that my ex-wife and I have since January 1979; I am the son and grandson of Dutch heroes of the resistance against Nazism in 1940-45; my father survived over 3 1/2 years as a political prisoner in German concentration-camps; my grandfather (whose name is on the Yad Vashem wall) was murdered in a German concentration camp; my father was knighted, long after the war, for designing and making exhibitions about the concentration camps; I have - excellent - degrees in psychology and philosophy; and it seems to me that - logically speaking - dr. Wessely and dr. Mengele have something in common: They are both sadists. If this is "hurtful" to dr. Wessely, he should go to court: It is hurtful to me to be slandered by a pseudoscientist, in the name of medical science, and to be denied all help of any kind except minimal dole for 34 years now, because dr. Wessely and others have recommended that people with my disease do not get help that other people with other diseases - often far less serious than mine - have been entitled to, but I do also admit that denying help to ill people on whatever ground is much cheaper for insurances and states.

To me it seems that a person who claims that a disease with an unexplained cause must be a psychiatric complaint, for which reasons those who have the disease are to be denied help; on the ground that he "knows" that hundreds or thousands of his medical colleagues who have researched ME/CFS and insist that it is a serious disease must be as insane as the patients is... not quite sane himself, at the very least.

Also, in Holland dr. Wessely would have been diagnosed, by his very own psychiatric colleague prof.dr. Bastiaans, as an obvious patient with "second generation concentration camp syndrome" - which maybe says as much about the supposed science of psychiatry as it does about psychiatrists like Bastiaans and Wessely.

Then again, it may, in this case - and I speak here as a psychologist - suggest a psychiatric cause for professor Wessely's cruel
pseudoscience that - I repeat this for Mr Campbell's intellectual and moral benefit - logically implies that hundreds or thousands of dr Wessely's much better qualified medical colleagues who insist that ME/CFS is a serious non-psychiatric disease, as does the World Health Organization, must be quite as insane as I am, and as millions of others with my disease are, according to dr Wessely's calumny, now indirectly but proudly supported by the editor of "Nature".

But I am quite willing to argue this - and my human and personal integrity, and my human rights to help if I am ill, according to my own doctors, who know me personally - in court, and ask for punitive damages for slandering me, for slandering millions of other people with my disease, and for slandering thousands of medical doctors who are not psychiatrists - and I am also rather amazed that a journal like "Nature" lends itself for this manner of slandering pseudoscientific bullshit, that in effect also has been the cause of death of many, such as Sophia Mirza, because they were denied help or were physically abused by psychiatrists in the name of dr. Wessely's "science".

See also as to ME/CFS (that I prefer to call ME):

1. Anthony Komaroff

Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS (pdf)

3. Hillary Johnson

The Why

4. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf)
5. Eleanor Stein

Clinical Guidelines for Psychiatrists (pdf)

6. William Clifford The Ethics of Belief
7. Paul Lutus

Is Psychology a Science?

8. Malcolm Hooper Magical Medicine (pdf)

                  PS: Any necessary corrections have to be made later.