Archive for September, 2012

R.I.P. Thomas Szasz

September 24, 2012

Courtesy of This Week In Mentalists

With a caveat: Thomas Szasz (Szász Tamás István (born 1920, Budapest), Jewish Hungarian-American psychiatrist and academic) didn’t like the label ‘anti-psychiatry’ and could not stand R.D. Laing: he makes this clear in Anti-Psychiatry: Quackery Squared. He claimed that the label was assigned to him in order to discredit him. Just an FYI.

Szasz states unequivocally in Anti-Psychiatry, Quackery-Squared that he could not identify with the so-called Anti-Psychiatry Movement.  He even disputes its legitimacy as a movement.  He believes that the psychiatric establishment have portrayed him as being an integral part of this so-called movement to discredit him.  Another trick was to smear him as a ‘leftist’ when he was, in fact a right-leaning libertarian who believed passionately in the concept of personal responsibility.

By the by, Szasz was a real scientist, a physics major, who graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 1941.

Maybe it’s time for a ‘Book Binge‘.

Benefit of Law

September 19, 2012

Roper: So now you’d give the Devil benefit of law?

More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

Roper: I’d cut down every law in England to do that.

More: Oh? And when the last law was down—and the Devil turned round on you—where would you hide? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake.

A Man for All Seasons (1960)

Bonfire of the Sotheby Paintings

September 11, 2012


Or “Bonfire of the Inanities”

Now that’s what I call…a seriously dysfunctional family.

“When I was about nine or ten years old my father had a bonfire of Victorian paintings. Like many a person who was inclined by nature to hoard, he sometimes had fits of clearing things out to make space, presumably for something else to accumulate. The paintings shared a loft for several years with crates of tinned fruit that he had bought during the Korean War, in the fear that the conflict would spread and rationing re-introduced. He kept the fruit and got rid of the paintings.”

And the underclass are supposed to be emulating this?

Too funny.

I’m sure I’ve read this somewhere before. Recycling without the environmental benefits.

Oops. I think I offended the good doctor’s top disciples.

I expect to be struck by lightning any time soon.

I have been tried and found guilty in the court of Texan brothers ‘Steve ‘n’ Clint’ and some other bloke who calls himself ‘Gavin’ (Gavin?  Sounds like an eighties football hooligan) of  ‘ad hominem’:

Let us see what the good doctor himself has to say about ad hominem:

Why Intellectuals Like Genocide

Here I confess that I am entering the world of ad hominem.

However, when it comes to the questions of human motivation it is difficult altogether to avoid ad hominem.

Anything Goes

And as ich bin ein untermensch surely I cannot be judged more harshly than the good doctor.

“Is there any attitude more illiberal?”

Possibly but then I’ve never claimed to be anything other than ‘illiberal’.

And who says I’m ‘blaming’ anyone?  I’ve read about this episode before.  In the account that I read poor little nine year old Theodore was sobbing and pleading with his father not to burn the paintings.

You’d have to have a heart of stone not to be moved by that.

What Goes Around Comes Around…

September 9, 2012

Hark hark the dogs do bark
The beggars are coming to town
Some in rags and some in jags*
And one in a velvet gown.

Because some things never change.

Adorable and Immensely Cuddlesome

September 3, 2012

I want that cat:

Unless, of course, you are a mouse.

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