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Oct 07 2013

Monday Miscellany: Pirates, Psychotherapy, Prestige

1. Psychotherapy’s Image Problem: I have some quibbles with this article. For one, it’s a pretty rote process to test a psychiatric medication. You have the pills, which are, most importantly, not as unique and complicated as People Practicing Therapy, you compare them against treatment as usual or placebos and then you do statistical magic* and have some sort of answer about how helpful it is. So yeah, of course it’s easier to have the American Psychiatric Association putting out guidelines for use. Secondly, the writer (as was pointed out in several letters to the editor) pitted medication and therapy interventions against each other, when in fact many people use them together–and that seems to be something we’d like to encourage.

2. Again, a caveat. This article about a Wyoming cowboy who prefers dresses to pants could use some help with framing. But, “He asks classes not to judge him by his dress, and they’ve responded. Students once arrived in hoodies, removing them to reveal pink hair ribbons and matching pink shirts. Goodwin nearly wept at the gesture.” didn’t leave me dry-eyed.

3. Why would a blogger at Science Based Medicine and an editor at PLoS One accept an article about homeopathy for publication? Because he had great reasoning, that’s why.

4. ElodieUnderGlass writes to a reader about work settings and the adults that inhabit them.

The woods are a tough mistress. Lots of us live in them. Many of us can’t afford to stake our money on a principle. Many of us sacrifice our dignity on the altar of Customer Service, and we don’t do it because we enjoy it. Nobody goes to school hoping to be an Ophelia. Nobody wants to grow up to be a telemarketer. People don’t usually work in factories for spiritual fulfillment.

5. Oh ho, those entitled Millenials want to pay for their groceries! Just live on that prestige! In other words, I’m really really fed up with the way universities force students into unpaid internships. Northwestern does it, and ProPublica isn’t a fan.

6. Dateline told me it was true, video games are making our kids violent. But what if they’re also influencing them to run too many errands?!?!11l!!!

“It’s a concern that has been expressed by society for a long time now,” said Butow. “It goes back as far as the 1999 Columbine massacre in the United States, and potentially even further than that. For more than a decade, we’ve had to consider, as parents, what we’re exposing our children to, and I don’t think there’s a single parent with a teenage child who has not asked themselves at one point or another ‘If I buy this game for my son or daughter, am I encouraging arbitrary behaviour or acts of inexplicable charity?’”

*not actually magic. Or as simple as bang! results. But, simpler than people

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