4, 2013
Crisis: Greenwald, Lavabit, Hayden, NSA, US psychiatry
  "They who can give up essential 
   liberty to obtain a little temporary
   safety, deserve neither liberty
   nor safety."
   -- Benjamin Franklin [1]
   "All governments lie and nothing
   they say should be believed.
   -- I.F. Stone.

1. The NSA debate is as much about journalism as

2. Lavabit: The Email Service That Refused to Bow to NSA
3. 'Psychopaths': GOP Lawmaker, Former NSA Chief Joke
     About Putting Snowden on 'Kill List'


5. back at you, EU…
About ME/CFS


Today the first four links are to things that fit in the crisis series, while the fifth and last is about psychiatry, especially as practised in the U.S., and therefore fits in the DSM series.

1.  The NSA debate is as much about journalism as surveillance 

The first item today is by Glenn Greenwald in the Guardian:

In fact, it is mostly about an interview he had on the BBC's Newsnight, with an extremely bad and partial interviewer, who really, like most of her colleagues these days, does neither have the wit nor the looks to do this, except that she also is older than most of her equally incompetent colleagues.

Anyway... Greenwald's written bit starts as follows:

In late June, the economist Dean Baker astutely observed that our NSA reporting was "doing as much to expose corrupt journalism as to expose government spying." Indeed, from the earliest stages of this reporting, back in Hong Kong, we expected (and hoped) that the reporting we were about to do would expose conflicts in how journalism is understood and practiced as much as it would shine light on the NSA's specific surveillance programs.

That, I think, has clearly been the case.
But the important part is the interview, that follows, which is quite good:


It takes nearly a quarter of an hour, but at least Greenwald speaks very sensibly.

2. Lavabit: The Email Service That Refused to Bow to NSA

Next, here is some more on a story I have given some attention to repeatedly, the last months, namely about the founder of Lavabit, who acted quite well. This is by Sarah Lazare, who writes for Common Dreams:
It starts as follows:
The head of Lavabit, the email service used by Edward Snowden, shut down his own company rather than comply with FBI orders to expose its 400,000 users to direct surveillance, newly unsealed court documents show.

"[P]eople using my service trusted me to safeguard their online identities and protect their information," founder Ladar Levison declared in a statement posted to his Facebook page Wednesday—the day that his gag order was lifted and the court documents released. "I simply could not betray that trust. I simply could not betray that trust."

Also, a bit later on, with bolding added by me:
In his statement released Wednesday, Levison slammed the vast secret surveillance dragnet allowed to function virtually unchecked.
And that is one of the reasons why the U.S. indeed seems to be changing into a police state: Secret courts, doing secret things, on the basis of classified documents - that to the best of my knowledge go against the constitution, but that also cannot be tested.

'Psychopaths': GOP Lawmaker, Former NSA Chief Joke About Putting Snowden on 'Kill List'

Next, here is Jacob Chamberlain on Common Dreams, about the precursor of general Keith Alexander as NSA chief, namely general Michael Hayden:
It starts as follows:
Edward Snowden, the former NSA employee known for blowing the whistle on the agency's unconstitutional dragnet surveillance practices, should be put on the "kill list" used by the Obama administration to take out assumed enemies, former National Security Agency director Michael Hayden jived Thursday during a panel discussion on cybersecurity hosted by The Washington Post.

And it was "a joke" - except that it clearly corresponds to his sincere wishes.

4. ..The NSA Has EVERYONE Under CONSTANT Surveillance”..

Next, an article on Washington's Blog, with a far too long title, although it has the advantage of saying it:
Here is a relevant bit from the beginning:

Security expert Bruce Schneier confirms what we’ve been saying for years … don’t get too distracted by the details, because the government is spying on everything:

Honestly, I think the details matter less and less. We have to assume that the NSA has EVERYONE who uses electronic communications under CONSTANT surveillance. New details about hows and whys will continue to emerge — for example, now we know the NSA’s repository contains travel data — but the big picture will remain the same.

John Lanchester writes in the Guardian:

This is the central point about what our spies and security services can now do. They can, for the first time, monitor everything about us, and they can do so with a few clicks of a mouse and – to placate the lawyers – a drop-down menu of justifications.

As shown below, Schneier and Lanchester are right.

You'll have to check out that "shown", if you want, but I may pick up Lanchester's article tomorrow. (It depends. I did read it, but I have only so much time and space.)

back at you, EU…

As my last item today, I have an article by a pensioned American psychiatrist, that does not belong to the crisis series, but to the DSM-5 series (both series with more than a hundred entries). It probably is interesting only for people who have an interest in psychiatry:

Also, I am only concerned with the first paragraph here:
In case you haven’t noticed, European [and World] psychiatry is pulling away from American psychiatry at a fairly brisk pace. Reform of the alliance between the pharmaceutical giants and medicine is centered in Europe [the EMA, the British Journal of Medicine, AllTrials, etc]. Articles critical of the DSM-5 are common in the European journals, but almost absent in ours. The DSM-5′s failed attempt at a paradigm shift to a neuroscience base fooled no one on the other side of the pond, and the DSM is appropriately spoken of as an enterprise past its time.
I hope this is true, but I do not know this. Also, it is formulated a bit strongly: There seem to be plenty of European psychiatrists, for example, who like the DSM-5 and/or who see it as little different from the DSM-IV. But there is criticism and there are critical articles - while it certainly is another sign that something must be rotten in U.S. psychiatry if one reads that "Articles critical of the DSM-5 are common in the European journals, but almost absent in ours".



[1] Here it is necessary to insist, with Aristotle, thay the governors do not rule, or at least, should not rule: The laws rule, and the government, if good, is part of its executive power. Here I quote Aristotle from my More on stupidity, the rule of law, and Glenn Greenwald:
It is more proper that law should govern than any of the citizens: upon the same principle, if it is advantageous to place supreme power in some particular persons, they should be appointed to be only guardians, and the servant of laws.
(And I note the whole file I quote from is quite pertinent.)

About ME/CFS (that I prefer to call M.E.: The "/CFS" is added to
facilitate search machine) which is a disease that 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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