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Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: Oswego County, New York
Home country: USA
Current location: Lake Ontario Snow Belt
Member since: Fri Apr 23, 2004, 11:56 PM
Number of posts: 36,286

About Me

I've been a female working a "man's job" (mechanical engineer), stay at home Mom (6 kids), working Mom (6 kids to put through college), unemployed, underemployed, temporarily employed and now working from home! We live on an old, small farm with 2 dogs and 2 cats in the house, variable number of chickens out in the yard.

Journal Archives

Has anyone read a good study of the Beatitudes?

I would like to learn more about them.

Recommended reading - "Saving normal : an insider's revolt against out-of-control psychiatric

diagnosis, DSM-5, Big Pharma, and the medicalization of ordinary life" by Allen Frances

The author addresses many of the issues that are smoldering debates here on DU. For example, while not up to the vitriol of discussions of breast feeding pit bulls at the Olive Garden, any mention of depression and/or SSRIs is certain to bring out the same points: On one side, a claim that too many people are taking these drugs and that they are ineffective, on the other, testimony that these drugs have saved lives.

The author's has several basis theses:

1. The DSM (The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), published by the American Psychiatric Association) has not been used as the editors meant it to be used.

2. Big Pharma has a vested interest in widening the scope of diagnosis in order to sell more drugs.

3. Among other premises, he considers the epidemics of autism and ADHD to be mirages. There are societal incentives to be given these diagnoses, among them, special programs by school districts.

4. Too many people are being diagnosed with clinical depression when they are in fact undergoing appropriate reactions to stressful situations (loss of job, death in family, etc). These people would recover their equilibrium with a little time and counseling, but instead are placed on prescriptions for the rest of their lives. (As a side note - he suggests that this is one reason that SSRIs do not perform any better than placebos in blind tests - Too many people in both groups recover from their depression without intervention because they were misdiagnosed and shouldn't have been included in the trials.)

5. The overuse of legal drugs is killing people and adding costs our health care system.

6. Because so many well people are given a diagnosis, resources are diverted from people who are clinically depressed, who do have ADHD or autism, etc.

The book goes into these arguments and lots more. Many of his observations about Big Pharma apply to all drugs, not just psychotropics. I picked up this book out of curiosity, thinking the author was a crank. Instead I found a series of well thought out arguments supported with extensive foot notes. Agree or disagree with what he has to say, I think he brings new points to the table.

A question for New Yorkers - are you aware that Cuomo is

under fire for interfering with the Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption?


I'm asking because I think this is a story in Albany, possibly in NYC but that Upstate is totally out of the loop.

(I'm asking in GD because I think more New Yorkers will see it here than in the New york forum.)

Leaving tomorrow's worries for tomorrow -

I have a couple odds and ends going on,but I realized that my real issue is the background worry that these twinges presage real trouble coming at me. I'm letting things that may never happen spoil my day!

Governor Cuomo, meet Zephyr Teachout:


Yesterday's thread on Theresa Roemer's closet


brought these two comments from my husband:

1. At least she isn't using her money to buy our government like the Koch brothers.

2. How does her personal wealth stack up against others in the 1%? I doubt anyone here can really comprehend the kind of money that allows for a "closet" like this; but is she really wealthy compared to some others like the Koch Brothers, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, the Walton family?

I think I'm in love with Janet Yellen -

According to a recent article in the New Yorker, she and her husband were always worried about losing their jobs at Berkley, so they timed their sabbaticals in government service accordingly.


The Hand on the Lever, Nicholas Lemann, New yorker 07/21/2014

Let me repeat that - we now have a head of the Federal Reserve who worried most of her life about being out of work. She understands! She's one of us.

People who are bored and have nothing to do all the time -

what's their secret?

Looking waaaaaay ahead -

I enjoyed a dinner of tapas recently. I'd like to extend that idea - I love the idea of a Christmas season gathering that includes cookies, fruit cake, petitfours, tea, crackers cheese, dried fruit and fresh fruit etc. (My kids would drive in for lunch, then head home for the evening). I've never figured out how to make this hearty enough for the men in the crowd. So - what would you add?

So, I carefully planted individual zinnias and cosmos in flats under lights last March.

Those flats are on my porch now looking rather wan. I had to be away for 6 weeks, so June 3 I mixed up all my leftover flower seeds and tossed them along a weeded bed I'd just planted lilies in.
You should see the size of the plants I got!
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