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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Psychiatric Fraud

Drug Companies and Psychiatric Fraud

I have come to regard the 'science' of Psychiatry as having about as much validity as Astrology or Witchcraft.

Psychiatrists have become little more than pill pushers, dispensing the latest dangerous concoctions to patients without warning them of the many dangerous side effects, including massive liver failure and even death. For instance, the antidepressant Serzone was withdrawn from the U.S. market for just these reasons several years ago, and last year a special FDA 'Black Box' warning was sent to doctors regarding the high incidences of death among elderly patients taking the supposedly 'safer' new class of antipsychotics.

I am currently reading two very interesting books on psychotropic medications. The first is 'Your Drug May Be Your Problem' by Peter Breggin, M.D., who also wrote 'Talking Back to Prozac'. The second is 'The Creation Of Psychopharmacology', by David Healy, who also has written 'The Antidepressant Era'.

No doubt Prozac initiated the 'Brave New World' of Psychiatry in 1987. The following is an excerpt from Healy's book of how Prozac came to be approved by the FDA in spite of its ineffectiveness in numerous drug trials.

"The regular inclusion of placebo controls in regulatory studies was not instituted until the mid-1980's, after the intervention of the FDA, and it initially elicited dismay from the pharmaceutical industry."

"The crisis that arose may have contributed to the licensing of Prozac. The plans to launch several antidepressants in the U.S. were set back by the new requirements for placebo-controlled studies, at a time when work on new antipsychotics had all but ceased because of the legal liabilities associated with tardive dyskinesia. For a period in the 1980's, there appeared to be a real risk that no new psychotropic drugs would emerge. Against this backdrop, in 1987, the FDA licensed fluoxetine, on the basis of minimal superiority to a placebo and its inferiority to imipramine as a comparator and despite the fact that fluoxetine could not be shown to be beneficial to in treating patients hospitalized for depression and was therefore in some real sense inferior to agents already available."

"Furthermore, many of the patients given fluoxetine were also prescribed benzodiazepines, to minimize the drug-induced agitation that had led a number of patients to worsen dramatically. In a population of mild depressives, it could not be assumed that these benzodiazepines were not working in their own right. It follows that fluoxetine alone had not been shown to work - and indeed has never since, in this sense, been shown to work."

"The story of Prozac is not an isolated one. Throughout the 1990's, a succession of drugs with minimal effects on depression was licensed, in some cases with only two out of six trials showing a superiority to a placebo, with any trials that failed to show a differentation from a placebo being termed failed trials."

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Gold futures top $700

Gold Heads for $1000/oz. + , sez Mr Ken.


Gold futures top $700 for first time in almost 26 years.

Tuesday May 9, 11:58 am ET By Myra P. Saefong - (Yahoo Finance)

Gold at nearly 26-year high as Iran optimism fades, U.S. dollar weakens

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) --

Gold futures climbed above $700 an ounce Tuesday for the first time since October of 1980 after hopes for resolution over Iran's nuclear program faded and the U.S. dollar weakened, prompting investors to seek refuge among the precious metals.

"Gold ... thrives on uncertainty," said Jon Nadler, an investment products analyst at bullion dealers

"While one can always mitigate risk to a certain extent (with efficient portfolio hedges), one cannot as successfully hedge for uncertainty and the impacts of same on conventional portfolios," he said. "That is precisely the time when gold shows its long-established attributes best."

Gold for June delivery climbed as high as $700.50 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the highest futures level in almost 26 years, according to montly charts. The contract was last up $20.40, or 3%, at $700.30. Prices closed lower for the first time in seven sessions Monday, as traders locked in some of the metal's recent sharp gains.

Gold prices have climbed $29 since the beginning of May alone, propelled higher by a now familiar list of factors, including inflation fears, geopolitical worry, a weaker dollar and burgeoning demand from investment funds seeking better returns than are currently available in other asset classes...

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Bush Challenges Hundreds of Laws

Bush’s contention that he can ignore provisions of the Patriot Act, whose renewal he ushered last month, has drawn scrutiny. (Jim Young/ Reuters)

So What's 'Der Fuerher' been up to lately?...
source-The Boston Globe

Bush challenges hundreds of laws-
President cites powers of his office

By Charlie Savage, Globe Staff April 30, 2006

WASHINGTON -- President Bush has quietly claimed the authority to disobey more than 750 laws enacted since he took office, asserting that he has the power to set aside any statute passed by Congress when it conflicts with his interpretation of the Constitution.

Among the laws Bush said he can ignore are military rules and regulations, affirmative-action provisions, requirements that Congress be told about immigration services problems, ''whistle-blower" protections for nuclear regulatory officials, and safeguards against political interference in federally funded research.

Legal scholars say the scope and aggression of Bush's assertions that he can bypass laws represent a concerted effort to expand his power at the expense of Congress, upsetting the balance between the branches of government. The Constitution is clear in assigning to Congress the power to write the laws and to the president a duty ''to take care that the laws be faithfully executed." Bush, however, has repeatedly declared that he does not need to ''execute" a law he believes is unconstitutional.

Former administration officials contend that just because Bush reserves the right to disobey a law does not mean he is not enforcing it: In many cases, he is simply asserting his belief that a certain requirement encroaches on presidential power.
But with the disclosure of Bush's domestic spying program, in which he ignored a law requiring warrants to tap the phones of Americans, many legal specialists say Bush is hardly reluctant to bypass laws he believes he has the constitutional authority to override...

Does anyone need any further evidence that Bush should be impeached? The U.S. is in a sorry state to have elected a leader who is so incompetent, inarticulate, incurious, and incapable of understanding (or caring about)constitutional law.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Carlsen defeats Van Wely in Tie Break
(follow-up story)

Super GM Van Wely and young phenom Magnus Carlsen played a 4-game match in the town of Schagen in northern Holland.Van Wely won game 1. Carlsen won game 2. They drew game 3 and 4. Therefore, the match ended in a 2-2 tie. In the blitz playoff, Carlsen won 3.5 - .5.Congratulations to Magnus Carlsen. He continues to prove to the world that he is the real deal!

# posted by SusanPolgar @ 5/02/2006 07:58:00 AM 2 comments links to this post

Monday, May 01, 2006

Van Wely vs. Carlsen Showdown

Photo courtesy of ChessBase

DSB Bank is sponsoring a wonderful chess match (4-game classical time control) between Super Dutch GM Van Wely and young Norwegian phenom Magnus Carlsen (15 years old). The match is being held at Schagen in northern Holland.

After 2 games, the score is 1-1 (Van Wely won game 1 and Carlsen won game 2).

Van Wely, L (2655) - Carlsen, M (2646) [E15]Match Schagen NED (1), 04-28-2006

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.b3 Bb4+ 6.Bd2 Be7 7.Nc3 0-0 8.Rc1 c6 9.e4 d5 10.e5 Ne4 11.Bd3 Nxd2 12.Qxd2 Nd7 13.0-0 Bb4 14.cxd5 Bxc3 15.Rxc3 Bxd3 16.Qxd3 cxd5 17.Rfc1 f6 18.Qe2 fxe5 19.dxe5 Nc5 20.Nd4 Qe8 21.f3 a5 22.a3 Qg6 23.b4 axb4 24.axb4 Nd7 25.Rc6 Rae8 26.Rd6 Rf7 27.Kg2 h5 28.h4 Nf8 29.Rxb6 Ra8 30.Qd2 Ra3 31.Rb8 Rd3 32.Qf2 Qh6 33.f4 Qg6 34.f5 Qh6 35.Rc2 Kh7 36.Re8 Rxd4 37.Qxd4 Rxf5 38.Rf2 Ng6 39.Rxf5 exf5 40.Rc8 f4 41.Qd3

Carlsen, M (2646) - Van Wely, L (2655) [B43]Match Schagen NED (2), 04-29-2006

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Nc3 Qc7 6.Bd3 Nf6 7.0-0 Bc5 8.Nb3 Be7 9.f4 d6 10.a4 Nc6 11.a5 b5 12.axb6 Qxb6+ 13.Kh1 0-0 14.Qe2 a5 15.Be3 Qc7 16.Nb5 Qb8 17.c3 d5 18.e5 Ne4 19.Bxe4 dxe4 20.Nc5 Bxc5 21.Bxc5 Ba6 22.c4 Rd8 23.Nd6 f5 24.exf6 Rxd6 25.Qxe4 Bb7 26.Bxd6 Qxd6 27.Rad1 Nd8 28.f7+ Kxf7 29.Qxh7 Qc6 30.Rf2 Qe4 31.f5 e5 32.Rfd2 Bc6 33.Qg6+ Ke7 34.Rd7+ 1-0

# posted by SusanPolgar @ 4/30/2006 07:45:00 AM 5 comments links to this post