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September 23rd, 2006

Torture and society

Filed under: Cutting the crap,Politics,Psychology — jm @ 06:54

So I’m up very early this morning, which feels great, by the way :-). Here is an immensly important article from the Washington Post about torture by someone who has actually experienced it in soviet Russia. Most interestingly he talks about the consequences torture has on the torturers. A must read!

July 08th, 2006

Antisocial Personality Disorder and the rape of young Iraqi women

Filed under: Cutting the crap,Politics,Psychology — jm @ 11:20

A great post on Respectful of Otters. The soldier being accused of raping a young iraqi woman has recieved a medical discharge from the army. However the diagnostic criteria don’t match the story a hundred percent.

To stay in the spirit of today’s posts, I’d love to know how many actual journalists looked up ASPD in the DSM IV

March 08th, 2005

Refuting the Terri Schiavo myths

Filed under: Cutting the crap,Politics,Psychology — jm @ 12:02

It's a great read. Even if you just want to get a lesson in reframing and misuse of medical studies in the highly disputed case. Read Lindsay Beyerstein's analysis.

March 01st, 2005

A new cure for depression?

Filed under: Psychology — jm @ 11:20

Jamie Zawinsky has an interesting bit on a new depression treatment that involves getting electrodes implanted into your brain which are then used to stimulate a brain area that is connected to “moods”.

According to the article the test-subjects were severly depressed persons who underwent a number of other treatments first and were thus declared to have ‘untreatable’ clinical depression, which is a shame, as the surgery helped them, so now, technically, they weren’t untreatable after all.

The referenced article quotes “Dr Helen Maybery” of the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia (who appears to be listed as “HELEN MAYBERG, M.D.” on the faculty’s list of members):

“I see depression as a brain disease not as a chemical imbalance like most psychiatrists. The brain is not a bowl of soup. You cannot just add a chemical and stir. It is a very intricate wiring system. Some circuits were not working for these people. Once we turned on the stimulator, the changes were astounding.”

I really had hoped that they didn’t perform the procedure on all of the test-subjects. My guess would be that for some of these people, being in the program, seeing all the advanced technology, then getting a hole drilled in your skull would have done the trick without getting any of the electrodes implanted. But that’s just me.

The medical professionals in the article, though, are really great as they now call invasive brain surgery an alternative to ECT (formerly known as “Electroshock therapy”, but that sounded too harsh for a procedure jwz rightfully describes as “Still depressed?” ZAP! “Still depressed?” ZAP!). In fact Professor Vince Egan, a clinical psychologist at Glasgow Caledonian University, is quoted saying:

for those who have biological features of depression who do not respond to drugs, who have previously been treated using ECT, then something less drastic or violent or understood has got to be a good thing.

Yep, all those poor people! Something even less understood will certainly help them more.

February 24th, 2005

Republican strategy memo

Filed under: Politics,Psychology — jm @ 02:44

Leaked republican strategy memo. It's a great exercise in the art of reframing and a great way to learn about politics. Go read it!

February 21st, 2005

“Mental health institutions”

Filed under: Psychology — jm @ 03:26

The best thing about a "hospital" for the insane is the insanity of the institution. Mental Health Portland searches for a final resting place for 5000 rusty cans full of cremated remains of "patients" who (I wonder why), never actually got better. Instead they were locked away until they died. Only to be found again in an abandoned building.

February 02nd, 2005

Esref Armagan

Filed under: Psychology — jm @ 16:38

There's this guy. He's a painter. I think his pictures are kind of simplistic... which wouldn't exactly qualify him for a link, right? Well... he's blind. That makes Esref Armagan a miracle.

December 29th, 2004

DVD | Richard Bandler: The Art And Science of Nested Loops

Filed under: NLP,Psychology — jm @ 01:16

I watched the first half of "The Art and Science of Nested Loops", by Dr. Richard Bandler today. It's great, though it could use more professional editing. You just don't get the same level of insights as by directly training with him. They use 2 fixed view cameras (perfect for a seminar recording) and the sound is quite good, but the editing feels amateurish. :-/

I enjoyed it anyway. The recording shows the part he does on the last day of a NLP Practitioner training, when he explains an integral part of his teaching technique, namely the stories he tells and how they connect. He explains exactly what states they elicit and if you saw Richard work personally, you can follow along great. He's a genius at what he does and it shows.

The first DVD ends at the point where the audience leaves to do the inevitable exercise, which is an integral part of the learning experience. So you don't get that, but I don't think it can get much better than this. I have yet to watch the second part. I hope he explains the rest of his unique storytelling style: marking the start of phrases auditorily, anchoring responses visually and so on.

All in all, the DVD is not the training and it requires a certain level of knowledge about NLP to get the most from it, but it's certainly worth it. I'm sooo looking forward to train with him again in April. Even though he clearly demonstrates during the seminar that he has no clue about rocket science ;-).