Archive for November, 2011


November 27, 2011

My mother retires in a few weeks. She is leaving the chaos that is the Birmingham mental health system. For the last few years she has watched it disintegrate. She is left wondering what went wrong.

My mother claims that the permissive attitude of the younger doctors and nurses to the consumption of illegal drugs is partly to blame for the mess Birmingham’s mental health services are in.  She sees patients taking them openly in the presence of staff members.  This has always happened but at least they used to have the decency to hide what they were doing.  They call it self medication. The problem is that it often renders their prescribed medication ineffectual.  Also the staff do not know which comes first, which is the chicken and which is the egg, the mental illness or the drug addiction.  

As someone who has had my lucidity snatched away from me, I do not not much patience with those who surrender their lucidity voluntarily. I would give anything to have mine back.  To be devoid of muddle headed thinking, visions, dreams and voices. But is anyone permanently in that state, I wonder.  Clouded visions, dispatches from another dimension have their uses. But being like this all the time renders you completely dysfunctional and can deprive you of the ability to make any kind of meaningful contribution to the world.

And that is tragic.

Addendum: According to Our Esteemed Leader:


‘An expert report for Downing Street suggested more than three-quarters of GPs admitted they had signed people off sick for reasons other than their physical health.’

Make of that what you will.

Oh, look, it’s the Ghost of Lord Kitchener:

No, not you. You suck. Nor you. You suck like a Dyson! And haven't I told you to go forth and multiply about ten times already!


November 25, 2011


The odour of death made me cry out loud,
the breath of the tomb
The rancid blood of the womb.
These were the disasters of revolutionary times,
of unfamiliar climes, of endless night,
For these are the inhabitants of the slums,
they are not like you and me.
A hollow hope sustains them.
And our pity demeans them

We judge them collectively from afar.
There is no singularity here.
We do not approach them directly.
We have never even met them
They are vermin, sewer rats.
We return to our townhouses,
our cars, our children, our lives
Enfeebled, simple common place facts
which do not make it into history books
or dry academic texts.

A Message to the Good Doctor and his Acolytes

November 24, 2011

There is no such thing as collective guilt. Each individual should be judged by his own actions.

Simon Wiesenthal

The Craziest Idea in the History of the Universe

November 18, 2011

My idea for controlling the world’s population. Kill all the people who don’t understand quantum physics, which would include me by the way, and then what is left will be a kind of super species – homo superior. That will be our finest, most selfless hour. Bequeath the world to those among us who will make best use of it. There is no other solution. Or is that the mentalist in me talking?

The Shape of Things to Come

November 16, 2011

Hovering, breathless,

on the edge of desolation.

The egg cracks open.  

The shell is broken.  

It is but a token.

Of your esteem.  

I dream in monochrome.  

Somebody tell me

what I am supposed to do.  

What does your psychiatrist

really think of you?

I cry out, I kneel

on a beach of grey pebbles

and bleached bones.

Pleading with God

Won’t you take me

Won’t you take me home?

Elephant in the Centre of the Room

November 11, 2011

Some random person: ‘Why aren’t you in sheltered accommodation?’

Moi:’Did you spend the ‘eighties hiding under a rock, or on an extended holiday on some distant, undiscovered planet?

Evidence Based Medicine

November 10, 2011

They were just foot soldiers.

The dragnet effect. Collective guilt.

Are cherry picking and over extrapolation now acceptable in medical research (particularly psychiatry)?

There is only one thing worse that being devoid of admirers and that is being replete with admirers who are seriously dim.

Remember this:

‘The plural of anecdote is not data.’

Ben Goldacre.

‘The most dangerous words in medicine are ‘In my experience…”


‘If in doubt blame the nurses’

Doctor Incompetence.

What diagnosis would I give: ‘delusions of omniscience by proxy.’

And finally:

‘Nullius in verba’.

Should I…

November 2, 2011

What Could This Mean?

November 1, 2011

A flag has been hoisted over a public building in Libya. Go here: for details. It is the flag of Al Qaeda.

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