Monday, August 22, 2005

Is Your Boss a Psychopath: Part II?

An issue back, Fast Company ran an article where you could take a answer a questionnaire and determine whether your boss was simply annoying or really pathological. Most people who wrote in shared their horror stories.

But the letter to the editor that got my attention was the lone voice of desent. Here is what this enraged dude said:
Being a longtime reader of the works of psychiatrist Thomas Szasz, I found your article to be the same psychobabble bulls--t that's excreted by all the other quacks (psychologists and psychiatrists) that medicalize behavior. A so-called psychopath is someone who doesn't have any morals. That's not the same as lacking an eyeball or a hand. Actually, a psychopath is omeone who has a set of moral values we abhor; he or she has no qualms about the method of getting to his or her goal. If that means people losing their josbs to an overseas vendor, that's the breaks. The Aaron Feurersteins [CEO of Malden Mills] are few and far between. The psychopathic screening tests that Hare suggested wouldn't have caught anyone.
Martin D. Kessler
Cambridge, Massachusets


Szasz believes this:
Szasz says that modern psychiatry in one case "[innocent people] are locked up; in another [guilty people] are excused." He is speaking of using "commitment" for people who have broken no law versus criminals who have broken a law but get off the hook because they are "insane". He says that "people [in the psychiatric model] are 'puppets'--find out who holds the strings and blame them." He also says, "Human suffering exists, mental illness does not exist."

Mr. Kessler does somewhat misrepresent Szasz's views. Dr. Szasz does not put volitional psychotherapy in the same category as psychiatry. Psychiatry he feels enslaves people in diagnosis and confinement (in its worst machination--he used the example of Joseph Kennedy lobotomizing his "sleazy" daughter while he was Ambassador) while psychology and psychoanalysis is endeavored under someone's own free will.

I haven't formed an opinion about this myself, but it does seem to me that more and more people are being labelled "mentally ill" to what effect? It almost becomes meaningless. Szasz also says that "madness" is actually more accurate. Those who are mad and angry and violent should be punished. But for those who just want a break from life--there is no alternative for them to survive (have "room and board") so they must either commit a crime or end up on the street.

This is an interesting view. Read more here.
More blogs about the woodlands rita.