sábado, 20 de junio de 2015

Modern man continues to perfect his blame-shifting skills. The various undisciplined disciplines that make up the current therapeutic establishment

Medicalizing the Human Condition

By Larry Thornberry

Admirable Evasions: How Psychology Undermines Morality
By Theodore Dalrymple
  • Does it seem to you that most of the findings of psychology are either obvious or daft? 
  • Does the whole enterprise reek of morality-canceling relativism by explaining away all manner of bad behavior as being the result of disorders or syndromes that the individual bad actor is helpless before? 
  • Does the head trade in all its practitioners (psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric social workers, counselors of all stripes) strike you as shamelessly entrepreneurial, forever coining new diagnoses that can be turned into billable hours for the shrinks? 
  • Does it seem to you that the entire credentialed profession has no more insight into the complex business that is the human condition than acute observers — playwrights, novelists, bartenders, chief petty officers, your Aunt Eunice — have had for centuries?
Yea, it seems that way to me too. I was put off by the “behavioral sciences” early in Psychology 101 where I was exposed to the ravings of a then highly influential Viennese quack. I had to laugh out loud at Freud’s theory of penis envy, a condition I don’t doubt any number of men have suffered from over the centuries. But I’d bet the mortgage money that no girl or woman ever has.

At least as amazing as how silly this notion is, was the fact that so many otherwise sane adults, including my professors, took this, and similar nonsense, seriously. In fact, the thinking (if such it was) of this skilled self-promoter held enormous sway over the social science and artistic worlds, and even the general culture, for the better part of a century. (For the longest, our Freudian slip was showing.) It finally became so obvious that Freudianism was unscientific and more than a little nutty, and that the helping therapy based on it, psychoanalysis, was helping no one but the therapists, that even highly trained Ph.D.s began to notice. (Some of the artists still haven’t caught on.)

But you needn’t rely on my amateur and jaundiced view of psychology and all its works. In Admirable Evasions we have a credentialed and articulate practitioner, decades in the belly of this beast, to give us chapter and verse on the shortcomings of the various undisciplined disciplines that make up the current therapeutic establishment.


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