Such hype involves substances furthermore that by their very nature cannot be blinded or masked in rigorous clinical studies – think of masking or blinding a study participant for an hallucinogen – and about which the political hype is very high instead. At the end of each study, participants should routinely be asked a simple question, or a variation of it – entirely free of additional costs or time for researchers – which is not asked in major studies including the first randomised clinical trial published recently on this topic in the most prominent medical journal in the world, the New England Journal of Medicine, April 2021:
“What drug do you think you were given, the actual hallucinogen or the sugar pill?” Such type of question might perhaps help sedating the hype a little.
“The Soviet regime applies ‘scientific socialism’, within which psychiatry has a special place.”
“Historian Paul Johnson notes that in 1919 the Moscow Revolutionary Tribunal sentenced an anticommunist leader to treatment in a sanatorium.”
“Glasnost has not involved the release of any dissident from a psychiatric ‘hospital’.”
“Neal Ascherson, in the New York Review of Books, says German doctors were dazzled to discover that, under Hitler, medicine was ‘the central intellectual resource of the New Order’.”
“Since Freud postulated that the self is a fractious committee — the ego, id and libido — there has been ‘scientific’ doubt about the importance of reason in the individual’s life.”
“As Khrushchev said in Pravda in 1959 about people ‘who might start calling for opposition’ to communism: ‘Clearly the mental state of such people is not normal’.”
“Psychiatry, with its expanding arsenal of drugs, can be abused as a brutal instrument of social control. And the official Soviet premise, that only the psychologically disabled could fail to love socialism, enlists psychiatry as a rationalization for the regime.”
“When the recent surge of recreational use of so-called ‘hallucinogenic’ or ‘psychedelic’ drugs first came to popular attention in the early 1960’s, it was commonly viewed with suspicion and associated with the behavior of deviant or revolutionary groups.”
“Not only is ‘psychedelic’ an incorrect verbal formation, but it has become so invested with connotations of the pop-culture of the 1960’s that it is incongruous to speak of a shaman’s taking a ‘psychedelic’ drug.”
“We therefore, propose a new term that would be appropriate for describing states of shamanic and ecstatic possession induced by ingestion of mind-altering drugs.”
“Narcotics that induce hallucinations are variously called hallucinogens (hallucination generators), psychotomimetics (psychosis mimickers), psychotaraxics (mind disturbers), and psychedelics (mind manifesters).
No one term fully satisfies scientists, but hallucinogens comes closest. Psychedelic is most widely used in the United States, but it combines two Greek roots incorrectly, is biologically unsound, and has acquired popular meanings beyond the drugs or their effects.”
“South London and Maudsley has announced a new partnership to launch The Centre for Mental Health Research and Innovation to accelerate psychedelic research and develop new models of care for mental health in the UK.
Working together with the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King’s College London, and COMPASS Pathways, a mental health care company dedicated to accelerating patient access to evidence-based innovation in mental health, this pioneering collaboration will provide patient access to cutting edge research studies in multiple areas of high unmet need in mental health.
The Centre will accelerate research of emerging psychedelic therapies, support therapist training and certification, evaluate real-world evidence, and prototype digital technologies to enable personalised, predictive and preventative care models.”
“Frantz Fanon’s psychiatric career was crucial to his thinking as an anti-colonialist writer and activist. Much of his iconic work was shaped by his experiences working in hospitals in France, Algeria and Tunisia. [His psychiatric writing] from 1951 to 1960 in tandem with his political work reveals much about how Fanon’s thought developed, showing that, for him, psychiatry was part of a much wider socio-political struggle. His political, revolutionary and literary lives should not then be separated from the psychiatric practice and writings that shaped his thinking about oppression, alienation and the search for freedom.”
“It was out of desperation and his lack of success with Soviet doctors, Fanon’s biographer David Macey reports, that Fanon had agreed to American offers to fly him to the United States.”
“As Vivek Murthy, the Surgeon General, points out, I think one of the significant things we are going to find ten years from now is a phenomenal negative psychological impact that CoViD has had on the public psyche.
And so you have an awful lot of people who are, notwithstanding the fact that things have gotten so much better for them economically, that they are thinking, but how do you get up in the morning feeling happy – happy that everything is alright?
Even though your job is better, even though you have more income.”
“Coutrot was probably the first French businessman to perceive the possible use of psychology and sociology in business.”
“This was the spirit in which he created the Centre d’Etude des Problèmes Humains, CEPH, in association with the writer Aldous Huxley, the archeologist Robert Francillon, and the economist Georges Guillaume. Hyacinthe Dubreuil, Jean Ullmo, Alfred Sauvy (who coined the expression ‘Third World’), Teilhard de Chardin (a close friend of Coutrot’s), Tchakotine, and others participated in the CEPH meetings, which included eight commissions: economic humanism, applied psychology, rational and humane limitation of inequality, propaganda, industrial decentralization, psychobiology, history and analysis of Marxism.”
“Open to psychology, even psychiatry and sociology, the new managers wanted to take into account the human factor and analyse the motivations buried deep inside managers, at the very heart of the spirit of capitalism.”
“Social psychology techniques, and industrial psychology imported from the U.S. Thus, a mixed discourse can be seen to be forming in which the words and expressions borrowed from the spiritualist and personalist vocabulary (community, person, man, liberty, dialogue) are blended with terms used for technical efficiency and psychoanalysis. The switch to human relations and the social sciences by the heirs of Social Catholicism.”
“A new generation of psychosociologists followed the importing of group techniques… Most received, after their university studies, a complementary education in the United States from the “masters” of American social psychology, in particular Carl Rogers.”
“In 1912 the Association, jointly with Cambridge University Eugenics Society, held a meeting in the Guildhall, where Ellen Pinsent read a paper on ‘Mental Defect and its Social Dangers’.”
“Since its formation in 1914 the Central Association for Mental Welfare has on numerous occasion drawn public attention to the social problem presented by mental deficiency and to the grave consequences and serious cost entailed by the presence of mental defectives in the community.”
Contents of such volume and the two book covers of the hardback 1965 and paperback 1966 editions are presented. The importance and “rediscovery” of such book in PsyPolitics is motivated by the extraordinary concordance with some of the themes present in today’s transforming global politics, currently in mass and digital media, as well as in formulations independently developed over the past three years.
“Parallel with these events is the perfecting of conditioning procedures, with or without the aid of drugs and hypnosis. The abolition of privacy – already well along in our day – is placing potent instruments of control in the hands of elites who may see an opportunity to consolidate their position by policing the population medically” – Harold Lasswell
Horton, while clearly and unmistakably espousing a globalist and technocratic view, at the same time introduces themes from an author such as Foucault – who worked largely on topics related to psychology and psychiatry – and even appears to criticize the dangers of technocracy at the end of his book. The risk of recuperation – of Foucauldian themes and tools radically challenging the rising ‘biomedical’ as well as ‘psy’ global power – into mainstream globalist and technocratic discourse is definitely present, in my view, in Horton’s latest book.
“There is one golden rule that should be applied in working with model psychoses. One should start with oneself.”
“Our psychotomimetics resemble the hypothetical endotoxin that Carl Jung called toxin-X and that we have called M (mescalinelike) substance.”
Osmond views raise an interesting paradox of experience over logos: if in order to discuss rationally about such substances one has to use them and if using them disorganizes the psyche, would it ever be in fact possible to discuss rationally about them? Or the move to use them implies – a priori – an abandonment of human rationality?
“No account of model psychoses would be complete that did not relate those that are induced chemically to those induced by other means, such as the reduced or specialized environments described by Heron, Bexton, and Hebb and by Lilly. These specialized environments have been used since antiquity.”
“The substances in question can be used to develop very high degrees of that mysterious yet vital quality – empathy.”
“I believe that these agents have a part to play in our survival as a species.”
The broader political meaning of these substances was stated by Osmond from the very birth of the word ‘psychedelic’.
‘Psychelytic’ would appear to be in line with a Gnostic worldview – as presented by Eric Voegelin – requiring the dissolution or disintegration of the psyche. However, instead of psychedelic, for the pneuma to be revealed or manifested a more appropriate term could be ‘pneumadelic’.