Let me ask you a purely academic question: Hello?
— Dean Blehert

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Tom Cruise: Who Does He Think He Is - 4

I'll say more today about Tom's not being a doctor and therefore not being qualified to speak out about the pseudo-science of psychiatry.

First, a question: Why didn't the media attack Brooke Shield's book (recommending that women use anti-depressants to handle post-partum depression) on the grounds that she's just an actress? Why is it OK for Brooke Shields to air her positive view of psychiatry, but not OK for Tom Cruise to air his negative view?

One answer would be that Brooke Shields isn't claiming to be an expert; she's just writing about her personal experience. But isn't it tantamount to claiming expertise when you recommend (directly or implicitly) the drugs to a broad public? I noticed almost nothing (in the media's attacks on Cruise for criticizing Shields' book) about the recent news stories of mothers (several – the most notorious being Susan Smith) who, after being given anti-depressants to handle post-partum depression, murdered their children.

Shields didn't mention this in her book. A responsible author (which Shields was not) would have taken the trouble to find out more about the dangers of these drugs before promoting them. A responsible media would have pointed out that Shield's book was promoting drugs that were (in recent trials) deemed wholly or partly responsible for women murdering their children.

Bottom line: Tom Cruise attacks psychiatry, and that's not OK, because he's just an actor, not a doctor. Brooke Shields promotes psychiatry, and that's OK, though she's just an actor, not a doctor.

Another question: If Tom's unqualified to speak out on psychiatry, because he's "not a doctor", the question immediately arises: What do doctors say about psychiatry. So the media gave us a bunch of psychiatric experts, who attacked Cruise's remarks.

How is it then that the media did NOT give us the many doctors and even psychiatrists who agree with all or most of Tom Cruise's views on psychiatry? Why did they create the impression that this was all about Tom and his church?

Or perhaps you didn't know that many doctors and psychiatrists, people who have all the proper credentials in their fields, often Ivy League degrees and many books published and who are NOT members of Tom's church and who have nothing to gain in their careers and finances (and everything to lose) have been speaking out for years against the pseudo-science of psychiatry, the fraudulent basis for the current "medical model" of psychiatry that tries to treat sadness and restlessness of school kids as medical illnesses, etc.

It's to be expected that most people don't know about these people. They aren't given media attention. Few or none of them were allowed to be heard during the hubbub about Cruise's remarks (though several stepped forward). One (Harvard-educated psychiatrist and author, Peter Breggin) was invited to appear on a show, then kept waiting for 70 minutes while the usual pro-psych. "experts" blasted Cruise; then he was told, sorry, they hadn't been able to fit him in. (Do you think, maybe, the local producers received a phone call from management when they heard Breggin was slated to be on the show?)

At this point, you may want to click on the following for a sampling of what these doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists and other experts have to say about psychiatry:

Experts on DSM 4 (the psychiatric diagnostic manual) -- scientific? Or Not?
More on DSM 4
Experts on ADHD -- Is this labeling based on science?
Experts on Psychiatric Drugs -- are they useful? Based on valid science?
Experts on Mental Illness -- Is the psychiatric/medical model for mental illness valid?
More on Mental Illness.

So the media picture of a lone, under-educated extremist attacking the people who know – is simply a media-concocted lie. What really occurred is that, for years, a significant number of dissenting doctors and psychiatrists and FDA whistle-blowers -- at great risk to their careers and incomes -- have tried to tell us what Tom Cruise told us, but they have been denied a voice in the main-steam media. Tom Cruise, the top-grossing star in the world, could not so easily be denied, so he put his career and media access on the line by speaking out.

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