When Rejecting Orthodoxy Becomes a Mental Illness by Russell L. Blaylock, M.D.

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

A recent article appearing in the magazine Scientific American Mind caught my attention as a perfect example as to how science (scientism) is being used to demonize those who disagree with a particular issue. The article, “What a Hoax,” appeared in the September/October 2013 issue. In fact, the article goes far beyond just demonizing dissenters of the orthodox opinion; incredibly, it classifies them as mentally ill and a danger to society. This of course reminds one of a similar methodology used in communist countries, such as the Soviet Union, Maoist China and communist Cuba.

Recognizing that the gulag had Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn in 1994its limitations and was somewhat embarrassing when discovered by the West (through Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s three volume Gulag Archipelago), the Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev switched to the use of the psychiatric prisons. Not only were dissidents marked as “enemies of the state,” they were reclassified as dangerous psychopaths and delusional. Incredibly, that is exactly what a group of psychiatrists and the author of this article, one Sander van der Linden, a doctoral candidate in social-environmental psychology at the London School of Economics, are proposing.

The introductory sentences demonstrate a principle of orthodoxy, that is, one must assume that the conclusions of the orthodoxy are always correct. Further, the orthodoxy never has to defend its position. For example, the article begins with — “Did NASA fake the moon landing? Is the government hiding Martians in Area 51? Is global warming a hoax? The answer to these questions is, 'No'…”

Notice that the answer to these loaded questions is emphatic, but never throughout the entire article did the author ever defend this bold answer by the one thing the critics of “conspiracy theory” insist upon — facts. One should also note the choice of conspiracy statements — the moon landing and space aliens, two things that would to the reader be associated with a flake, are chosen to be the lead in. This is followed by the principle reason this article was written — to portray those who do not accept the theory of global warming as true as being just as deluded as those who believe in this first two statements and, as you will see — mentally ill.

The very next paragraph hammers this point home. He writes: “Many scholars dismiss conspiracy theorists as paranoid and delusional. Psychological data bolster their case: people who harbor conspiracist [sic] thoughts are more inclined to paranoid ideation and schizotypy, a mild form of schizophrenia.” (Italics added).

Voltaire quoteHere we see the use of the term “many” to describe psychiatrists who classify conspiracy theorists as the “lunatic fringe.” This gives the impression that we are speaking of a large percentage of psychiatrists, when in fact, if based just on scientific evidence, the number would be quite small. This tactic is to give the argument greater weight without having to resort to scientific evidence. Even if most did believe the conspiracy theorists are loony hypothesis, we must also appreciate that at one time most orthodox scientists believed that brain cells could not be regenerated in the adult — even until quite recently. Truth, as such writers have difficulty understanding, is not discovered by a majority show of hands.

Linden then declares their main concern — the conspiracy theorists become “disengaged” from “issues of great political importance.” What this seems to mean is that they refuse to go along with the plan of those proposing such theories as global warming, which, as he admits, will require a radical restructuring of society. In other words, these are not minor debating issues of academic science; rather these are beliefs that can radically alter our very lives, our freedom and our fortunes. In truth, he is less concerned with the conspiracy theorists themselves than he is with those they influence. The battle is between who’s theory is to be dominant.

Next, Linden assures us that the conspiracy theorist is not concerned with “science”, but rather “Conspiracy theorists propose, without having collected rigorous data to support their case, that powerful people or groups are secretly plotting to accomplish some sinister plot”. This is a powerful statement that more resembles carefully constructed techniques of influence psychology than a serious statement of fact. If one reads the extensive literature surrounding global warming conspiracy theory and concludes there is nothing there, then so be it. Yet, most telling is that the left is trying desperately to convince the public not to examine the data being offered by the conspiracy theorists, mostly out of fear that they might be convinced.

Health and Nutrition SecretsI refer to a similar psychology in the fluoride debate in my book, Health and Nutrition Secrets (2002), in which a class of dental students was told to never engage in a debate with anti-fluoridationists. Why? Because the professor explained, you will ultimately lose the debate. Instead, they were told, they should only present their side of the story to the public unopposed.

Science has always been about critical debates between opposing views. Each side presents their data openly in a forum or series of forums, thus allowing the truth to come forward. If one examines, for example, the evolution debate, one sees every method available being used to prevent the public from being exposed to even the flaws of the evolutionary theory, far less its substance. For example, these scientists, who love to proclaim their open mindedness, push for legislation that prevents even a critical examination of creation theory or a presentation of the flaws of Darwinism. Recently, one of the science educators stated in a science publication that students entering the university should be questioned about their views of evolution and if they are found to hold creationist ideas they should be encouraged to seek non-science majors. In his own way, this seems to be what Linden is saying.

The article contains incredible abuses of logic. For example, Linden quotes sociologist Ted Goertzel of Rutgers University as concluding that people who have “decided that officialdom is deceptive in one case, other disturbing world events may appear to have similarly hushed-up origins.” Yet, to do otherwise would demonstrate naivety and an abandonment of logic. To believe a scoundrel, would be to fall victim of every scam artists and rouge in the universe.

A growing body of collectivist literature espouses a concern that the public is suspicious of science and especially scientists themselves. Linden states, “When more than a third of the population doubts the veracity of climate scientists’ conclusions…the repercussions for society can be grave.” This statement makes the declaration that the debate over climate change is finished and settled and no more discussions are needed.

Despite the fact that the proposed solutions to climate change demand a virtual destruction of the free market and the private ownership of private property, this writer and the climate change scientists in general insist that we charge ahead. Repeatedly, Linden frames the debate as the danger being presented when a segment of the population fails to believe the proposed justification for radical change in society — that is, doubters are standing in the way of a political revolution. He says, “This result is alarming because it suggests that every cursory defense of conspiracy theories can sow mistrust and divert attention from critical scientific, political and social issues.”Lenin, Stalin, Mao

Common sense and good logic should caution one to be very careful before proposing such a radical social change that can not only lead to socialist enslavement of millions, but also is most often irreversible. Revolutions are easy to instigate but it is very difficult to reverse, as history should have taught us. Many “scientific” social engineers in the West accepted Marxism without any critical analysis and as a result over a billion people were enslaved, lives were destroyed, the Soviet Union and China were denied almost a hundred years of industrial and technological progress and over 300 million people were systematically exterminated by these governments. The price of accepting social theories can be quite high.

Linden then makes the incredible statement that neutralizing the conspiracy theories can be “fiendishly difficult” and that attempting to do so can actually have the “…unfortunate side effect of legitimizing them at the same time.” Why would defending one’s position be so difficult, especially considering his statement that they have all the facts? I watched the DVD documentary film Loose Change and then later a special TV program refuting the film.

The defense of the deniers of the films findings, if you can call it that with a straight face, was laughable at best. Loose Change asked a number of very critical questions as well as providing a great deal of information denied to the general public by the media and “official” sources. No evidence to refute most of the questions and allegations proposed by the Loose Change film were ever presented — rather the commentator just made the comment that each statement was “not true,” just as we see in this article. We see the same thing with other issues, such as climate change, vaccines, mercury toxicity, chemtrails and the disastrous events during our many wars — Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and the Gulf Wars.Disinformation

Finally, the author of this diatribe concludes that conspiracy theorists are just simpletons — they need a less confusing world so they are attracted to theories that simplify world events. Otherwise, we are told, the world is fill with the complexities of spontaneously occurring events that overwhelm the minds of mere mortals. Even traditional, orthodox history books are filled with stories of conspiracies at every level of society, yet, somehow in the minds of the left this is all to be ignored.

We also have the experience of those living in the various communist movements in the world, which are predicated on a massive on-going series of conspiracies, each based on disinformation, deceptions, and propaganda. This is confirmed by their own literature as well as hundreds of defectors from these communist systems, each in a position to know, including the owner of this website, Dr. Miguel Faria, author of Cuba in Revolution: Escape From a Lost Paradise (2001). Take, for example, the information from the recently released book Disinformation (2013) by Romanian defector Lieutenant General Ion Pacepa (b. 1928; photo, left below), one of the highest-ranking defectors from the communist system, or the DVD interview with defecting Soviet spy-master and KGB propagandist Yuri Bezmenov, both of whom told of a world-wide conspiracy to not only deceive the West, but also to enslave it. Are we to assume that this information was generated only in the minds of “fringe personalities” and people Ion Pacepa 3suffering from “schizotypal personality disorder”?

One theme recurring in this article and other anti-conspiracy literature is that the conspiracy theorist believes that “powerful people or groups are secretly plotting to accomplish some sinister plot.” A close examination of the major sources of conspiracy theories finds that those engaged in serious studies of events in both history and contemporary times, base their conclusion on careful documentation, testimonies of first-hand witnesses in high positions, and careful analysis of this data based on accepted principles of logic and reason.

What we often see is that critics of conspiracy theories rarely examine the evidence being presented. I recall a young girl working in my office making a terrible face when I mentioned a well-known conservative leader’s name, as if she had suddenly bitten into a lemon. When I questioned her about her reaction, she stated that he was a racist and an extremist. I then asked if she had ever heard one of his radio addresses or had ever read anything he had written. She looked sheepish and said, "No."

She was taking the word of the person’s critics to arrive at a conclusion concerning the content of his beliefs. We see this all the time. I have read a great deal of the writings of communist leaders and other prominent collectivists, but I also examine not only just the words they expel but I carefully evaluate their actions. “By their fruit, you shall know them,” is an admonition we should all follow.

The most dangerous thing in this Scientific American Mind article is the implication that to disagree with the conventional wisdom, that is the orthodoxy, is evidence of a serious mental aberration — a mental illness that even posseses a name — schizotypal personality disorder. In the George Orwell’s novel 1984, he defines orthodoxy as “not having to think,” implying that others, the elite, have performed that vital function for you — your job is to be obedient.

Ludwig von Mises states that in a socialist society the most dangerous man is one that can think critically. This article epitomizes this thinking by the left. The stage is being set to declare those who disagree with the orthodoxy as not only being mentally ill, but also as a danger to the social good — the greater good. In the former Soviet Union, to believe in God was proof that one was mentally ill because the state had declared there was no God.

Written by Russell L. Blaylock, MD

Dr. Russell L. Blaylock is President of Advanced Nutritional Concepts and Theoretical Neurosciences in Jackson, Mississippi. He has written numerous path-blazing scientific papers and many books, including Excitotoxins — The Taste That Kills (1994), Bioterrorism: How You Can Survive (2001), Health and Nutrition Secrets (2002), and Natural Strategies for Cancer Patients (2003). He is Associate Editor-in-Chief and a Consulting Editor in Basic Neuroscience for Surgical Neurology International (SNI).

This article may be cited as:

Blaylock RL. When rejecting orthodoxy becomes a mental illness. Hacienda Publishing.com. August 15, 2013. Available from: http://www.haciendapub.com/articles/when-rejecting-orthodoxy-becomes-mental-illness-russell-l-blaylock-md

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Defamatory fraud?

Climate scientist’s defamation suit allowed to go forward
Calling a scientist a fraud could be defamatory.

by John Timmer Jan 26, 2014, Ars Technica

In July of 2012, the blog of the Competitive Enterprise Institute compared one of the researchers at Penn State University to one of its football coaches. The comparison was not flattering, given the referenced coach had just been convicted of sexually abusing minors. That comparison was then echoed favorably by a blogger and columnist at the National Review. The scientist in question, climatologist Mike Mann, sued them all for defamation.

The case has struggled through the courts ever since. The defendants tried to get it dismissed under the District of Columbia's Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation (SLAPP) statute, which attempts to keep people from being silenced by frivolous lawsuits. The judge hearing the case denied the attempt and then promptly retired; Mann next amended his complaint, leading an appeals court to send the whole thing back to a new trial judge.

Now the new judge has denied the SLAPP attempt yet again. In a decision released late last week (and hosted by defendant Mark Steyn), the judge recognizes that the comparison to a child molester is part of the "opinions and rhetorical hyperbole" that are protected speech when used against public figures like Mann. However, the accompanying accusations of fraud are not exempt:

Accusing a scientist of conducting his research fraudulently, manipulating his data to achieve a predetermined or political outcome, or purposefully distorting the scientific truth are factual allegations. They go to the heart of scientific integrity. They can be proven true or false. If false, they are defamatory. If made with actual malice, they are actionable.

Determining whether the blog pieces are false and were made with malice can be determined at trial, which, barring further appeals, may ultimately happen. But there may be further delays, as the lawyer that had been representing Steyn and the National Review has withdrawn from the case, leaving Steyn representing himself. Hopefully, he knows more about the law than he does about Mann's research. In another recent blog post about the case, Steyn indicated that he doesn't realize that Mann works on reconstructions of past climates, rather than the models that are used to project future climates.

Last bastion of Marxism!

Why is a Socialist Allowed to Teach Economics? by Alex B. Berezow, Nov 11, 2013

"...In a socialist economy, incentives play little (if any) role. Therefore, as University of Michigan-Flint economist Mark J. Perry wrote, "By failing to emphasize incentives, socialism is a theory inconsistent with human nature and is therefore doomed to fail."

"Yet, shockingly, socialists can regularly be found on college campuses. Kshama Sawant, an economics teacher at Seattle Central Community College, openly endorses socialism. She also is running for Seattle City Council and, with the latest election returns, claims 49.5% of the vote. With many ballots left to count, she could still win.
How on earth can somebody who rejects basic academic knowledge be so close to winning a city council seat? Even more troublingly, how can somebody with her beliefs be allowed to teach an economics course? ... Just how far out of the mainstream is Dr. Sawant? She favors collectizing Amazon. "Collectivizing" is a nice word socialists use to mean seizing assets and turning control of operations over to the government..."

Dr. Alex Berezow
Editor realclearscience
Re: your recent article "Why Is a Socialist Allowed to Teach Economics?"

Hi Alex,

I hope you do not receive too much flak for stating the obvious in a very courageous editorial. Collectivism is now chic only in the college campuses of the West, the last bastion of Marxism... but there are still hard core remnants behind what was called the bamboo curtain and the island of the lost paradise of Cuba.

So as I write this, it occurs to me that the following dialogue between a leading Chinese neurosurgeon in Beijing and myself about Chinese neurosurgery for epilepsy and access to medical care in China and Cuba would be of interest:

Keep up the good work!

Miguel A. Faria, Jr., M.D.
Associate Editor in Chief and World Affairs Editor for Surgical Neurology International (SNI)
Clinical Professor of Surgery (Neurosurgery, ret.) and Adjunct Professor of Medical History (ret.) Mercer University School of Medicine

cc. Dr Jim Ausman and Dr. Russell Blaylock

November 18, 2013

Thank you for your kind words. Indeed, I've received a tremendous amount of flak — mostly from people who never lived under a socialist regime, as much of my family has. (My in-laws are from Poland, and my grandparents were from the USSR.)

We also have a Cuban refugee playing for our local professional soccer team. If Cuba's regime is so great, I wonder why he left. Best,

Alex B. Berezow, Ph.D.
Editor, RealClearScience and Associate Editor, RealClearWorld

Hello Miguel,

People need to understand the "great lie," as it is the mesmerizing taint that draws the intellectuals and uneducated masses toward such utopian programs. It is as if they were all staring at a giant mural of the utopian future as described by the intellectual elite and are denied even a glimpse of reality. Anyone who dares to look past the great utopian mural is disciplined or eliminated. I can see in my mind's eye millions standing before such a mural chanting in unison, their minds numbed by what they are being told.

It is the story of the pill of murti bing! Dr. Berezow is correct--those who do not, and never have, lived in socialist/communist collectivism are the loudest defenders of such deadly systems. Some of us who have never lived in such systems at least, by readings and learning from those who have, become aware of the horror of such philosophies and political systems. The number of witnesses abounds.

Russell L. Blaylock, M.D.
Theoretical Neurosciences Research, LLC

Liberal Orthodoxy and Derision of Opponents!

Dr. Blaylock has written another excellent commentary on contemporary popular culture and the zeitgeist of our times enforcing collectivist orthodoxy!

Conspiracy Theories and the Ministry of Truth

One way to deride those who ask legitimate questions is to call them "conspiracy theorists," which subtly discredits opponents who can not be defeated with logic or facts. The ultimate purpose of course is to cast aspersions on your opponents, lumping them with real lunatics, so they can be painted with the same brush. Those pursuing truth together with those out in left field — a sort of guilt by association.Conspiracy Nuts

As Dr. Blaylock correctly points out: "The article begins with — "Did NASA fake the moon landing? Is the government hiding Martians in Area 51? Is global warming a hoax? The answer to these questions is, 'No'…"

Of course, lump Area 51 and flying saucers with those who question man-made global warming! The agenda of collectivists pushing for global warming to advance global socialism is protected, even when the science is still in question and those inquiring souls who question the liberal orthodoxy of climate change become Conspiratorial Nuts!

Verbal or written vituperation can take a more vicious mode: It can take the form of ad hominem attacks. Vladimir I. Lenin was a master of derision in all its variegated nuances. One of his instructions to his fellow propagandists, in fact, reads: "We can and must write in language which sows among the masses hate, revulsion, and scorn toward those who disagree with us."

Climate Change Orthodoxy

As far as Global Warming, the final word is not in regarding climate change, but the environmentalist fanatics and others (who should know better) continue to push for authoritarian measures to fight the threat of global warming. There is, of course, an ulterior agenda — collectivism. There are truly concerned and sincere environmentalists but they have become dwarfed by those with the ulterior motives.

Environmentalism has become a religion that worships at the altar of global socialism. It is more about taxation and wealth redistribution than about a looming ecological disaster. Many of its most ardent proponents are like political watermelons, green on the outside and red-pink on the inside, and they are pushing global warming and other looming environmental catastrophes because the alleged solutions are redistributive in nature first — and ecological second, if not third!

If in doubt, consider the following remarks by "concerned environmentalists":

"No matter if the science is all phony, there are collateral environmental benefits...Climate change [provides] the greatest chance for bringing about justice and equality in the world." --- Christine Stewart, Canada, Minister of the Environment. Speaking about Global Warming to the editors of the Calgary Herald as reported by Dr. Fred Singer in Access to Energy, December 1998.

"It is journalistically irresponsible to present both sides....We have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubt we may have. Each of us has to decide what is the right balance between being effective and being honest." --- Professor Stephen Schneider, Stanford University, who first railed about a coming ice age and now vociferates about global warming.

Here are some other interesting remarks by famous environmentalists I have come across while reading about the looming ecological disasters:

"The internal combustion engine is an unparalleled menace...more deadly than any military enemy we ever likely to confront." --- Al Gore, Earth in the Balance.

"It may be wrong to say it, but it would be just as wrong not to...To stabilize world population, we must eliminate 350,000 people per day."  --- Jacques Cousteau, 1991, famous oceanographer and environmentalist, to a UNESCO journalist.

And consider this assertion from an official in the Obama Administration who later recanted:

"...[T]he president's Energy Secretary Steven Chu acknowledged Tuesday at a Senate hearing that he indeed told the Wall Street Journal in September 2008 that getting U.S. prices up to higher, European-level gas prices would help move Americans to use more renewables. Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe..."

And in fact the collectivist in power have doubled the price of gasoline — i.e., from less than $2 per gallon when Obama took office to almost $4.00 per gallon in 2013 in the U.S. — during the first term of the disastrous Obama presidency.

Liberal Orthodoxy and Mental Health

Soviet psychiatry as enunciated by Premier Nikita Khrushchev in 1959 serves the state: "Can there be diseases, nervous diseases among certain people in the communist society? Evidently there can be. If that is so, then there also will be offenses which are characteristic of people with abnormal minds. To those who might start calling for opposition to communism on this 'basis,' we say that now, too, there are people who fight against communism but clearly the mental state of such people is not normal."

In other words, it is impossible for "normal" people in a socialist society to oppose collectivism. Criminality is impossible in a workers' paradise, a socialist utopia, where everyone is content — so it follows those opposed to the socialist order are not really criminals requiring punishment but insane madmen who require treatment and rehabilitation in psychiatric facilities.

Criminals, or rather insane anti-social elements, must therefore be re-educated, conditioned, and re-programmed. Incarceration is not intended for punishment but for rehabilitation. Anyone with "recidivist political behavior" has to be pathological, afflicted with a form of mental illness that must be cured by the State.

The Practice of Deceit as Justifiable

Collectivists believe the end justifies the means. Therefore scorn, deceit even violence are acceptable, if they advance the cause of socialism. Here are some quotations further supporting Dr. Blaylock's contention and my final assertion:

"The communists must be prepared to make every sacrifice and, if necessary, even resort to all sorts of cunning schemes and stratagems to employ illegal methods, to evade and conceal the truth....The practical part of communist policy is to incite one [enemy] against another....We communists must use one country against another....My words were calculated to evoke hatred, aversion, and contempt...not to convince but to break up the ranks of the opponent, not to correct an opponent's mistake but to destroy him, to wipe his organization off the face of the earth. This formulation is indeed of such a nature as to evoke the worst thoughts, the worst suspicions about the opponent." --- Lenin quoted in KGB — The Secret Work of Soviet Secret Agents by John Barron, p. 224.

"The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism. But, under the name of 'liberalism,' they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program, until one day America will be a socialist nation, without knowing how it happened." --- Norman Thomas, U.S. Socialist Party Presidential Candidate in 1940, 1944, and 1948.

The quote above is from Cannon L. Governor Reagan: His Rise to Power. New York, NY, PublicAffairs, 2003, p. 125.
Ronald Reagan used the quote and it has been used as such since then, although there is no  written record of the attribution as to the specific wording, but certainly to the substance. The Socialist American novelist, Upton Sinclair, (author of the 1906 book The Jungle) certainly wrote to his friend Norman Thomas, U.S. Socialist Party Presidential Candidate): "The American People will take Socialism, but they won't take the label...There is no use attacking it by a front attack, it is much better to out-flank them." We should wonder how Mr  Thomas, responded to Mr. Sinclair's letter!

Another socialist, who used the "progressive" label to dissimulate his socialism was Henry A. Wallace (1888-1965), U.S Vice President (1941-45) in the Democratic administration of FDR (1946-47), who later formed the left-wing Progressive Party and ran as its nominee, advocating closer ties with Stalin and the USSR, the UN, and foreign aid. — Henry Wallace. Encyclopaedia Britannica

Additional Reading

1) Blaylock RL. Managed Truth: The Great Danger to Our Republic. Medical Sentinel 1998;3(6):92-93.

2) Blaylock RL. National Health Insurance (Part 1): The Socialist Nightmare. HaciendaPublishing.com, August 19, 2009.

3) Blaylock RL. National Health Insurance (Part 2): Any Social Utility in the Elderly? HaciendaPublishing.com, September 26, 2009.

4) Faria MA. Shooting Rampages, Mental Health, and the Sensationalization of Violence. Surg Neurol Int 2013;4:16.

5) Faria MA. Violence, Mental Illness and the Brain — A Brief History of Psychosurgery: Part 3. Surg Neurol Int 2013;4:91.

6) Faria MA. Cuban Psychiatry — The Perversion of Medicine. Medical Sentinel 2000;5(5):160-162.