Bush To Impose Psychiatric Drug Regime

Following on from our earlier posts about the harmful effects of innappropriate prescription of drugs…

Bush To Impose Psychiatric Drug Regime

The whole article is worth a close read.

Plans to screen whole US population for mental illness

According to a recent article in the British Medical Journal, US president George Bush is to announce a major “mental health” initiative in this coming month of July. The proposal will extend screening and psychiatric medication to kids and grown-ups all over the US, following a pilot scheme of recommended medication practice developed in Texas and already exported to several other states.

The Texas Medication Algorithm Project (TMAP) will serve, according to the President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health, as a model for the upcoming initiative. The TMAP medication guidelines were established in 1995 as an “expert consensus” based on the opinions of prescribers, rather than an analysis of scientific studies. The pharmaceutical companies who funded the scheme include Janssen Pharmaceutica, Johnson & Johnson, Eli Lilly, Astrazeneca, Pfizer, Novartis, Janssen-Ortho-McNeil, GlaxoSmithKline, Abbott, Bristol Myers Squibb, Wyeth-Ayerst and Forrest Laboratories. The drugs recommended as “first line treatment”, many of them with potentially deadly side effects, are patented expensive drugs produced by the sponsors of the guidelines: Risperdal, Zyprexa, Seroqual, Geodone, Depakote, Paxil, Zoloft, Celexa, Wellbutron, Zyban, Remeron, Serzone, Effexor, Buspar, Adderall and Prozac.

More than that. The pharmaceutical companies appointed the experts and wrote the survey questions which led to their products being endorsed. The resulting model is now to be extended to the country.

And hell, with the influence of the AMA, and the global nature of pharmaceutical companies, and a “successful” scheme to point at, probably the world someday.

(Side effects of these drugs can include, say, diabetes, which the company also produces medication for.)

What could be better than extending an inappropriate response to the pressures of modern
living to the entire population so as to enslave them to expensive drugs? It may just be me but I read into this the notion of extending the use of these drugs to the population at large. A large screening program will turn up all sorts of people who suddenly need medication. I wonder if it can be made compulsory, too. Say, to get insurance.

People’s struggles with their minds are usually (IMO) a function of imbalance in their lives. A disease model for mental illness is inappropriate in the absence of a physical pathology/cause. Drugs cannot “cure” because there is no disease to fight. A better solution is to make changes in lifestyle, to engage honestly with the self and find meaning, and move towards balance, rather than to drug the crap out of oneself so as to maintain an ongoing unbalanced state causing misery. This approach is mainly pushed by those who benefit financially.

Not to blanketly say drugs are bad, here. But they should be a last resort, not least because of their side-effects, but especially because of their actual effects. We don’t need disconnected zombies, we need actively engaged humans.

Ah, ignore my ranting. Read the article and figure it out for yourselves.


No Responses to “Bush To Impose Psychiatric Drug Regime”

  1.   Timb
    July 20th, 2006 | 9:07 am

    Its a good rant man 😀

  2.   Scott C
    July 20th, 2006 | 9:21 am

    I hope you don’t mind but I’ve cross posted bits of that to NZgames – wanted to highlight the issue and get some discussion going as I think it’ll interest a whole bundle of people.

  3.   Pearce
    July 20th, 2006 | 11:38 am




  4.   Administrator
    July 21st, 2006 | 7:45 pm

    Scott: by all means. information wants to be free. maybe throw in a link back?

  5.   Scott C
    July 24th, 2006 | 10:32 am

    Link can be found here…


    Strange conversation shaping up around it – some chaff (like always) but some interesting views coming forth from some people…


  6.   Pearce
    July 24th, 2006 | 1:42 pm

    information wants to be free

    I’ve seen this quoted all over the place, usually by people who want to justify not paying for creative works they’ve illegally downloaded.

    Where does it actually originate from and – more importantly – what does it actually mean? Obviously information does not literally “want” anything, so it must be a metaphor of some kind.

  7.   Administrator
    July 24th, 2006 | 4:22 pm


    It started as a hacker thing.


    I think I was using it as a general expression affirming useful information should be freely given.

    This is one of the classic looks at what information is, and digital era intellectual property rights…(think it is the one I am thinking of… old school JPB anyway).

  8.   Pearce
    July 24th, 2006 | 7:45 pm

    That’s a lot better thought out than the “information wants to be free therefore I should be able to download all Harlan Ellison’s stories without paying for them” crap I usually hear.

    I’m a big fan of file sharing for finding obscure stuff I can’t buy, but I worry about fringe artists already on the bread-line who will probably have to go and get day jobs, and thus have much less time and energy to put into making more creative works.

    If you’ve tried working 9-to-5 and doing something like writing a novel at the same time, you’ll know how goddamned hard it is not to let the novel slide in favour of, say, sleeping or having some semblance of a social life. I’m getting much more sensitive to this stuff now.

  9.   Pearce
    July 24th, 2006 | 7:46 pm

    Sorry, that was way too far off topic.

  10.   Pearce
    September 7th, 2006 | 9:51 am

    That was also way off topic.

  11. April 18th, 2008 | 3:36 pm

    […] On and off the moose has commented about the alarming practices around psychiatric drug prescription, use, and the manipulations behind the scenes. […]