June 26, 2013
me+ME: From Greenwald and from 1 boring old man
1.  From Glenn Greenwald
2.  From 1 boring old man
About ME/CFS


It still is the case that sleeping remains quite difficult for me. This also makes my life rather difficult, at the moment.

Anyway. First two notes: (1) I uploaded yesterday "Bijlage: sep-dec 1969: "Kapitalisme en Revolutie"" and uploaded it again today with a few small corrections of some Dutch typos. (2) I removed a picture of Spanish female soccer players  without clothes, from a Nederlog file, because I have up to today, and only this month, had 1219 searches for it, on just one of my two sites, and I am sick of that. Also, the picture has been removed from my sites.

As for today, I have two items detailing with various things, each with various references:

First, from Glenn Greenwald latest post, two links that are indeed interesting; and second, from 1 boring old man, two posts about the situations in medicine and in psychiatry.

1.  From Glenn Greenwald

The following bits are from Greenwald's latest post:
This is a brief post with several links, which include the following two.

First, from McClatchy, that I didn't know but is the third largest newspaper company. They have a piece by Marisa Taylor and Jonathan S. Landay

It is quite good, indeed, and is about the Insider Threat Program that the Obama government is introducing, that sounds quite draconic:

The Defense Department anti-leak strategy obtained by McClatchy spells out a zero-tolerance policy. Security managers, it says, “must” reprimand or revoke the security clearances – a career-killing penalty – of workers who commit a single severe infraction or multiple lesser breaches “as an unavoidable negative personnel action.”

Employees must turn themselves and others in for failing to report breaches. “Penalize clearly identifiable failures to report security infractions and violations, including any lack of self-reporting,” the strategic plan says.

There is rather a lot more in the piece, none of which is heartening.

Second, there is John Cassidy, in the New Yorker:

This says among other things
More unnerving is the way in which various members of the media have failed to challenge the official line. Nobody should be surprised to see the New York Post running the headline: “ROGUES’ GALLERY: SNOWDEN JOINS LONG LIST OF NOTORIOUS, GUTLESS TRAITORS FLEEING TO RUSSIA.” But where are Snowden’s defenders? As of Monday, the editorial pages of the TimesPost, the two most influential papers in the country, hadn’t even addressed the Obama Administration’s decision to charge Snowden with two counts of violating the Espionage Act and one count of theft.
Also, he quotes from the Australian Broadcasting Company ABC that did an interview with Thomas Drake, also a whistleblower, that starts thus:
INTERVIEWER: Not everybody thinks Edward Snowden did the right thing. I presume you do…

DRAKE: I consider Edward Snowden as a whistle-blower. I know some have called him a hero, some have called him a traitor. I focus on what he disclosed. I don’t focus on him as a person. He had a belief that what he was exposed to—U.S. actions in secret—were violating human rights and privacy on a very, very large scale, far beyond anything that had been admitted to date by the government. In the public interest, he made that available.

That seems right to me, and there is more of the interview and the article under the last link.
2. From 1 boring old man

Now for a different subject that I've paid considerable attention to, namely the current states of medicine and psychiatry.

These are two articles by 1 boring old man, who is not boring, and is a psychiatrist, who before that was an internist. He writes a lot, which I like and follow because I have little to disagree with, and am interested, and indeed a psychologist. Two of his latest are the following.

First, about the state of medicine
In fact, this strongly recommends a recent article in the British Medical Journal:
which is by Jeanne Lenzer, a medical investigative journalist. As 1 boring old man puts it:
It’s about expert guidelines put together by biased experts – and it gives concrete examples of instances where those guidelines have been heavily compromised by the industry ties of the authors – examples resulting in unnecessary treatment and actual increased mortality. In psychiatry, there are plenty of examples (..)
I will only add that the phrase "Evidence Based Medicine" is already a puzzler: there is no real science without real evidence, and so people who insist that their supposed science is "evidence based" may not be scientists, but pseudoscientists.
Indeed, that is what I think about psychiatry.

In that context, there also is, from the same source

that also strongly recommends an article, this time from the British Journal of Psychiatry:
1 boring old man quotes a part of their conclusion, from which I will quote three parts:
Psychiatry is not neurology; it is not a medicine of the brain. Although mental health problems undoubtedly have a biological dimension, in their very nature they reach beyond the brain to involve social, cultural and psychological dimensions. These cannot always be grasped through the epistemology of biomedicine. The mental life of humans is discursive in nature. As Harre` & Gillet put it ‘We must learn to see the mind as the meeting point of a range of structuring influences whose nature can only be painted on a broader canvas than that provided by the study of individual organisms’.
Yes... but I too was there 40 years ago. But then indeed I am not a psychiatrist. A psychiatrist who was there is 1 boring old man, who gets filled with some sad feelings, which he writes well about.

From the same conclusion:
But good psychiatry involves active engagement with the complex nature of mental health problems, a healthy scepticism for biological reductionism, tolerance for the tangled nature of relationships and meanings and the ability to negotiate these issues in a way that empowers service users and their carers.
Put a little more critically: As present day psychiatry does not do these things, it is not good psychiatry. A final quotation from the conclusion:
All forms of suffering involve layers of personal history, embedded in a nexus of meaningful relationships that are, in turn, embedded in cultural and political systems. Kleinman & van der Geest have rightly critiqued the way in which medicine in general has come to see ‘caregiving’ in purely technical terms.
Quite so.

Then again... whether this proposed change is going to happen, I don't know, and indeed doubt, at least the coming decades, though I would be glad to be mistaken.


About ME/CFS (that I prefer to call M.E.: The "/CFS" is added to facilitate search machines) which is a disease I have since 1.1.1979:
1. Anthony Komaroff

Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS(pdf)

3. Hillary Johnson

The Why  (currently not available)

4. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2003)
5. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2011)
6. Eleanor Stein

Clinical Guidelines for Psychiatrists (pdf)

7. William Clifford The Ethics of Belief
8. Malcolm Hooper Magical Medicine (pdf)
Maarten Maartensz
Resources about ME/CFS
(more resources, by many)

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