science and ideology

Identifying pseudoscience

Science is the method of eliminating the maximum number of biases from observation as readily possible, describing results with as little interpretation as possible, and attempting to using valid and sound arguments to explain patterns in data with theorhetical models, peer reviewing results, and predict future results under similar conditions to experimentation.

The following may be very useful to read, especially with a topic in mind to examine whether it relates to these bullet points. Think of any broad topic relating to sets of political or religious beliefs, various practices in medicine, diet, fitness, spirituality, psychology, community, counseling, any subject presented as science. Really, any system of interpreting truth can be put under the microscope of the rest of this post, and It doesn’t even absolutely have to be a topic that presents itself as science, just any system of thought that makes claims. Once you have a topic in mind, consider how it relates to each bullet point. The subject I obviously would like people to examine is feminist theory.

The following are some of the indicators of the possible presence of pseudoscience.

Use of vague, exaggerated or untestable claims

  • Assertion of scientific claims that are vague rather than precise, and that lack specific measurements[47]
  • Assertion of a claim with little or no explanatory power.[36]
  • Failure to make use of operational definitions (i.e. publicly accessible definitions of the variables, terms, or objects of interest so that persons other than the definer can measure or test them independently)[Note 5] (See also: Reproducibility).
  • Failure to make reasonable use of the principle of parsimony, i.e. failing to seek an explanation that requires the fewest possible additional assumptions when multiple viable explanations are possible (see: Occam’s razor).[49]
  • Use of obscurantist language, and use of apparently technical jargon in an effort to give claims the superficial trappings of science.
  • Lack of boundary conditions: Most well-supported scientific theories possess well-articulated limitations under which the predicted phenomena do and do not apply.[50]
  • Lack of effective controls, such as placebo and double-blind, in experimental design.
  • Lack of understanding of basic and established principles of physics and engineering[51]

Over-reliance on confirmation rather than refutation

  • Assertions that do not allow the logical possibility that they can be shown to be false by observation or physical experiment (see also: Falsifiability).[18][52]
  • Assertion of claims that a theory predicts something that it has not been shown to predict.[53] Scientific claims that do not confer any predictive power are considered at best “conjectures”, or at worst “pseudoscience” (e.g. Ignoratio elenchi)[54]
  • Assertion that claims which have not been proven false must therefore be true, and vice versa (see: Argument from ignorance).[55]
  • Over-reliance on testimonial, anecdotal evidence, or personal experience: This evidence may be useful for the context of discovery (i.e. hypothesis generation), but should not be used in the context of justification (e.g. Statistical hypothesis testing).[56]
  • Presentation of data that seems to support claims while suppressing or refusing to consider data that conflict with those claims.[26] This is an example of selection bias, a distortion of evidence or data that arises from the way that the data are collected. It is sometimes referred to as the selection effect.
  • Promulgating to the status of facts excessive or untested claims that have been previously published elsewhere; an accumulation of such uncritical secondary reports, which do not otherwise contribute their own empirical investigation, is called the Woozle effect.[57]
  • Reversed burden of proof: science places the burden of proof on those making a claim, not on the critic. “Pseudoscientific” arguments may neglect this principle and demand that skeptics demonstrate beyond a reasonable doubt that a claim (e.g. an assertion regarding the efficacy of a novel therapeutic technique) is false. It is essentially impossible to prove a universal negative, so this tactic incorrectly places the burden of proof on the skeptic rather than on the claimant.[58]
  • Appeals to holism as opposed to reductionism: proponents of pseudoscientific claims, especially in organic medicine, alternative medicine, naturopathy and mental health, often resort to the “mantra of holism” to dismiss negative findings.[59]

Lack of openness to testing by other experts

  • Evasion of peer review before publicizing results (termed “science by press conference”):[58][60][Note 6] Some proponents of ideas that contradict accepted scientific theories avoid subjecting their ideas to peer review, sometimes on the grounds that peer review is biased towards established paradigms, and sometimes on the grounds that assertions cannot be evaluated adequately using standard scientific methods. By remaining insulated from the peer review process, these proponents forgo the opportunity of corrective feedback from informed colleagues.[59]
  • Some agencies, institutions, and publications that fund scientific research require authors to share data so others can evaluate a paper independently. Failure to provide adequate information for other researchers to reproduce the claims contributes to a lack of openness.[61]
  • Appealing to the need for secrecy or proprietary knowledge when an independent review of data or methodology is requested[61]
  • Substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all view points is not encouraged.[62]

Absence of progress

  • Failure to progress towards additional evidence of its claims.[52][Note 7]Terence Hines has identified astrology as a subject that has changed very little in the past two millennia.[63][64] (see also: scientific progress)
  • Lack of self-correction: scientific research programmes make mistakes, but they tend to reduce these errors over time.[65] By contrast, ideas may be regarded as pseudoscientific because they have remained unaltered despite contradictory evidence. The work Scientists Confront Velikovsky (1976) Cornell University, also delves into these features in some detail, as does the work of Thomas Kuhn, e.g. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (1962) which also discusses some of the items on the list of characteristics of pseudoscience.
  • Statistical significance of supporting experimental results does not improve over time and are usually close to the cutoff for statistical significance. Normally, experimental techniques improve or the experiments are repeated, and this gives ever stronger evidence. If statistical significance does not improve, this typically shows the experiments have just been repeated until a success occurs due to chance variations.

Personalization of issues

Use of misleading language

  • Creating scientific-sounding terms to persuade nonexperts to believe statements that may be false or meaningless: For example, a long-standing hoax refers to water by the rarely used formal name “dihydrogen monoxide” and describes it as the main constituent in most poisonous solutions to show how easily the general public can be misled.
  • Using established terms in idiosyncratic ways, thereby demonstrating unfamiliarity with mainstream work in the discipline


Tuviste un día agotador, vuelves de la facultad y aún así te quedan horas de tareas por hacer antes de siquiera pensar en ir a la cama.

Decides tomar un café para hacer tu trabajo más ameno, buscas tu taza, granos de café, azúcar y…

Oh, olvidaste comprar leche, ¿verdad?

Mierda, aquella vez que fuiste al supermercado, y te distrajiste por un segundo, solo un segundo. Eso fue más que suficiente para olvidar por completo tu cometido. Recuerdas que fuiste a por el pan, y cerca de esa repisa se encontraba tu whisky favorito, que rara vez veías en ese mercado. Resulta curioso que “últimamente”, si con eso nos referimos a los pasados 6 meses, tienes una tendencia de beber impulsivamente.

Luego de pasar minutos pensando profundamente si llevarlo o no, tomaste la decisión y lo agregaste a tu carro.

Fuiste a la caja, hiciste una insignificante fila y, sin dudarlo más, lo llevaste.

Entonces, olvidaste comprar leche por culpa de tu bebida favorita, ¿no es así?


Llovió todo el día, y el clima te resultaba deprimente, cualquier clase de brebaje alcohólico te hubiese afectado de la misma forma, después de todo, solo querías darte un gusto para mejorar mínimamente el día…

Por ende, olvidaste comprar leche gracias a el clima, eso es todo, ¿me equivoco?


Va más allá de el clima, ya que éste solo se debe a condiciones atmosféricas que son dadas por diversos factores alrededor del mundo, que a su vez, debido a el calentamiento global, es extremadamente inestable e impredecible…

Genial, olvidaste la leche por culpa del calentamiento global, ¿suficiente?


El calentamiento global no es más que el resultado de siglos de pésima utilización de recursos naturales por parte de los seres humanos, de manera que es su culpa que el tiempo de hoy sea tan desagradable…

¿Hay más?


Ya que los humanos solo existen debido a los miles de años que la tierra se tomó en formarse, para luego dar vida a cada especie que hoy la habita…

Y éstas, a su vez, necesitan de un sol para vivir. Una gigantesca bola de gases en el cosmos. Y como ella hay cientos… no, millones, billones de cuerpos iguales o incluso mayores.

Consecuencia de un evento que ocasionó todo esto, un teórico Big Bang.

¿Entonces olvidaste la leche por culpa del Big Bang?
¿Es esa la respuesta?

Vamos a mirarlo de otra manera, si tienes un juego de pool, y golpeas la bola blanca una vez, de una forma específica, todas las bolas van a moverse de una manera determinada, que es dada por la ubicación, fuerza, ángulo y dirección con los que la golpeaste.
Esto quiere decir que, no importa cuantas veces golpees la bola blanca, si lo haces de la misma manera, en todas las ocasiones, cada una de las bolas terminará en exactamente la misma posición.
Es más; con una computadora suficientemente potente, podríamos saber exactamente dónde caerá la bola, sin siquiera golpearla físicamente.
Todo es tan… predecible.
Si uno sabe las condiciones iniciales de un sistema, en este caso la mesa de pool, puede predecir las finales.

Un segundo.
Volvamos a tu vida.
Si cada segundo de ésta fue causado por el inicio del universo, ¿significa que, al saber las condiciones iniciales de éste, podríamos predecir tu existencia y todo evento en ella?
Y, bajo esta lógica, ¿está tu vida determinada desde el momento que comenzó el universo?
Piénsalo un segundo
Si se crearan un millón de universos exactamente iguales al nuestro, ¿en cada uno de ellos olvidarías comprar la leche?

¿esto significa que el libre albedrío no existe?

El pensamiento te abruma, finalmente, ante la indecisión, decides acabar tu día e ir a dormir…
La mañana siguiente, haces lo mismo, vuelves a casa a la misma hora, pero, en esta ocasión, recordaste comprar leche. Te quedas el resto de la noche estudiando, y finalmente te vas a dormir…

Vives el mismo día
con ligeras variaciones,
y otra,
y otra vez…

Después de todo, no estás en control, eres solo una bolsa de átomos flotando en el infinito cosmos, y te comportas como tal, sigues las mismas leyes de la física que el resto de la materia, y como tal, cada segundo de tu vida no es más que la consecuencia de un evento mayor.
Deprimente, lo sé.
Bienvenido a este bello juego de pool del que nunca escaparás.
Saludos, lector, y gracias por tu atención~

(Este texto habla de una ideología llamada “determinismo”, por ende, no habla de hechos objetivos, sino de una serie de teorías puestas a prueba en una situación determinada)

ID #49893

Name: Merjem
Age: 17
Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina

Generally speaking, I love meeting and interacting with people. This is all in theory though as actual interaction ends in far too much awkward silence and strings of random facts that no one asked for. So here I am hoping that penpalship will work out better.

I’m interested a variety of things primarily science and particularly astronomy. I love discussions whether they be about the meaning of life or just the cute couple you saw earlier today (fictional or otherwise). I like way too many things and always looking for more, be it shows, books, comics, ideologies, anything really.

I’ve moved around quite a bit and have a major fascination with the world and its cultures.

Preferences: Preferably someone close to my age but I’m interested in hearing about all walks of life.

Okay I know this is random but I cant stop thinking about the fact that some people don’t condone breastfeeding because they think its pedophilia bc it’s a sexual act to put your mouth there??? Like, that’s backwards as hell why do you think they exist and produce milk?? One of the reasons we’re attracted to boobs in the first place is a deep subconscious instinct of “you have large breasts, you’re the mate I wanna have bc the outcome of our offspring growing strong is higher” along with preference. Why do you think animals have boobs? For their kids. Like in what world are they more sexual than maternal? One of the reasons its arousing in the first place when adults put their mouths there is so you get in the mood, you know, to procreate. Just like how masturbating is actually tricking your body into procreating. Doing the do is originally for having kids and pleasure is also a thing but there is a difference. Have you ever nursed like those kids are heartless bastards they will fucking hurt you to get nourishment just please stop accusing nursing parents as being pedophiles what is wrong with you

German National Socialism was attracted to ancient German blood religions, race mysticism, and racial science. Almost everything they believed was both apocalyptic and utopian. They switched together the irrationalism of German romantic and mystic writers with the scientific racism and anthropology that gained rooted in their universities. Capitalism and liberal values such as individualism were as much an enemy to them as Marxism and the dogma of Moscow, probably more so. They wanted a Germany with a socialism based on racial nationalism so they ran state funded programs for families, eugenics, health care (to ensure the survival of the German race), and the science and arts directed by ideology.

Romanticism and syndicalism also influenced French Fascist movements that saw fascism as a true workers movement and the way to rekindle the souls of Frenchmen. They leaned more toward race mysticism (the idea that the battles of race was a conflict of fate between good and evil).

Italian Fascism was influenced by futurism and romanticism as well. Race was less of a marking point here but they still championed the State as a means of cultural and spiritual revival. Heroic violence leading a charge toward the future.

Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists and the Imperial League of Fascists were revival groups differing only on the degree on how much they hated Jews but they borrowed from Mussolini and Hitler. Yet their fascism was uniquely British believing that England lead the fascist crusade to recreate civilization into a new kind humanhood.

The common thread among these groups was that they believed in going forward never backwards.  The myth of the past and its symbols served as inspiration for a new revolution against decadent individual liberalism and the internationalism of Soviet Marxism which was believed to be guided by a Jewish conspiracy. Heroic violence and crusade for its own sake based on emotion and raw passion was their common ethos.

I would be wary of any group people who advocate violence for its own sake or the sake of a heroic crusade especially against ordinary people or unmask unseen enemies.

You wear a black shirt and attack people in the streets under the belief that this is a crusade you are embracing a fascist ethos. Smashing in banks and coffee shops all black and brown shirt tactics. Directing violence against business and your fellow citizens but not the State apparatus itself is fascist.

Most Americans reject such a notion about irrational heroic violence of this kind. I hope it stays this way and these small number of people who wish to act like the Neo Nazis they hate will washed away in the dust bin of history.

You might be a bit more surprised to find that the biggest gap of all exists over GMO safety — I was, it’s stunningly big. But in general, we know this stuff already. We know that people deny a lot of science when they really shouldn’t.

Evolution. Basically, a lot of people are afraid that if they accept the science of evolution, life becomes meaningless, morality collapses, and death becomes just the end. (Yeah, it’s really that big of a deal for them.) To address this fear, scientists need to show how religious believers (like Pope Francis) actually have no problem with the theory of evolution. Some have adopted this wise strategy, but many have instead opted to slam religion, which, obviously, is likely to backfire.

Climate Change. Here, resistance to the science is driven by an ideology and an identity called individualism, which centers on the belief that a fair society is one in which a person succeeds on his or her own merits. What does that have to do with the climate, you ask? Well, nothing obvious — except that libertarian individualists think that the climate issue is a way of clamping down on something they hold in very high regard indeed: the free market. Scientists can try to explain the facts here till they’re blue in the face, but if they don’t disarm the concerns rooted in ideology, they’ll never disarm the resistance.

There is a noticeable general difference between the sciences and mathematics on the one hand, and the humanities and social sciences on the other. In the former, the factors of integrity tend to dominate more over the factors of ideology. It’s not that scientists are more honest people. It’s just that nature is a harsh taskmaster. You can lie or distort the story of the French Revolution as long as you like, and nothing will happen. Propose a false theory in chemistry, and it’ll be refuted tomorrow.
—  Noam Chomsky
Women in Science and Engineering Reading List

Alice Through the Microscope: The Power of Science Over Women’s Lives (Brighton Women and Science Group) 1980

Athena Unbound: The Advancement of Women in Science and Technology (Etzkowitz) 2000

Athena Meets Prometheus: Gender, Science And Technology—a Selected Bibliography (Eldredge) 1988

Between Monsters, Goddesses, and Cyborgs: Feminist Confrontations with Science, Medicine, and Cyberspace (Lykke) 1996

Biology and Feminism: A Dynamic Interaction (Rosser) 1992

Biopiracy: The Plunder of Nature and Knowledge (Shiva) 1997

Biopolitics: A Feminist and Ecological Reader on Biotechnology (Shiva) 1995

Bodies of Technology: Women’s Involvement with Reproductive Medicine (Saetnan) 2000

Bridging the Gender Gap in Engineering and Science: The Challenge of Institutional  

Transformation (Intel) 1995

Cracking the Gender Code: Who Rules the Wired World? (Millar) 1998

Cyberfeminism: Connectivity, Critique, and Creativity (Hawthorne) 1999

A Dark Science: Women, Sexuality, and Psychiatry in the Nineteenth Century (Masson) 1986

The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology, and the Scientific Revolution (Merchant) 1980

Doing in the Hard Way: Investigations of Gender and Technology (Hacker) 1990

Female-Friendly Science: Applying Women’s Studies Methods and Theories to Attract Students (Rosser) 1990

Feminism Confronts Technology (Wajcman) 1991

Feminism in Twentieth-Century Science, Technology, and Medicine (Creager) 2001

Feminism Within the Science and Health Care Professions: Overcoming Resistance (Rosser)

Feminist Approaches to Science (Bleier) 1986

Feminist Frontiers II: Rethinking Sex, Gender and Society (Richardson) 1989

Gender and Technology: A Reader (Lerman) 2003

Gender and Technology: Empowering Women, Engendering Development (Everts) 1998

Hypatia’s Heritage: A History of Women in Science from Antiquity Through the 19th Century

 (Alic) 1985

Im/Partial Science: Gender Ideology in Molecular Biology (Spanier) 1995

Journeys of Women in Science and Engineering: No Universal Constants (Ambrose) 1997

Machina Ex Dea: Feminist Perspectives on Technology (Rothschild) 1983

Men’s Ideas/Women’s Realities: Popular Science 1970-1915 (Newman) 1985

The Mind Has No Sex? Women in the Origins of Modern Science (Schiebinger) 1989

More than Munitions: Women, Work and the Engineering Industries, 1900-1950 (Wightman)

The Outer Circle: Women in the Scientific Community (Zuckerman) 1992

The Politics of Women’s Biology (Hubbard) 1990

Primate Visions: Gender, Race, and Nature in the World of Modern Science

Re-Engineering Female Friendly Science (Rosser) 1997

Reflections on Gender and Science (Keller) 1985

The Science Glass Ceiling: Academic Women Scientists and the Struggle to Succeed (Rosser)

The Science Question in Feminism (Harding) 1986

Scientific-Technological Change and the role of Women in Development (D’Onofrio-Flores)

Sex and Scientific Inquiry (Harding) 1987

Sexism and Science (Reed) 1978

Simians, Cyborgs, and Women: The Reinvention of Nature (Haraway) 1991

Sympathy and Science: Women Physicians in American Medicine (Morantz-Sanchez) 2000

Teaching Science and Health from a Feminist Perspective: A Practical Guide (Rosser) 1986

Uneasy Careers and Intimate Lives: Women in Science, 1789-1979 (Abir-Am) 1987

Whose Science? Whose Knowledge? Thinking From Women’s Lives (Harding) 1991

Woman in Science (Mozans) 1974

The Woman Scientist: Meeting the Challenges for a Successful Career (Yentsch) 1992

The Woman’s Guide to Navigating the Ph.D. In Engineering and Science (Lazarus) 2001

Women in Engineering: Gender, Power, and Workplace Culture (McIlwee) 1992

Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering (National Science Foundation) 1986

Women in Science and Engineering, Spring 2005 (Wise) 2005

Women in Science and Engineering: Choices for Success (Selby) 1999

Women in Science: Antiquity through the Nineteenth Century (Ogilvie) 1986

Women in Science: Career Processes and Outcomes (Xie) 2003

Women in Science: Portraits from a World in Transition (Gornick) 1984

Women Scientists in America: Struggles and Strategies to 1940 (Rossiter) 1982

anonymous asked:

I don't understand your anti-psychiatry standpoint tbh. I looked through the entire tag and I just don't understand it. I have OCD, and all I feel coming from you is that my mental illness is simply just a product of society or something???? i hate my OCD, i want it gone, it's ruined my life, it's ruined my grades and honestly without my psychologist and without antidepressants i'd be in a much worse state. i dont understand, all i feel is that youre saying mental illnesses are fake or somethin

Honestly I don’t have much to tell you that isn’t somewhere in that tag. If your idea of whether they’re real relies on a doctor’s stamp of biological causation then they’re “fake” but I don’t buy the terms of the establishment to begin with and want to have a conversation using those terms. That is, I don’t think the question of whether mental illnesses are “real” or “fake” is useful- human pain is real whether it is recognized by the medical establishment or not. But the people who’ve built this establishment will tell you that they lack completely the things doctors need in other kinds of medicine in order to justify their existence: useful categories of diagnosis that are likely to be diagnosed the same by different physicians, chemical or measurable ways to distinguish between disorders, diagnoses which say something about causation (you have diabetes because of this relationship to insulin), etc etc. My problem is not even that psychiatry is ideological (all medicine, hell all science is ideological) but that it claims ardently not to be, even though we know historically that psychiatry has always hit the most marginalized the hardest and labelled them sick for reacting like healthy human beings put under disgusting, inhumane conditions created by capital and social situations: women, the poor, black people and other people of color, reacting to the stress of their lives, personal trauma, misogyny, people who are reacting to being put in inhumane conditions have always been the first to be labelled sick because it allows the society at large to ignore the problems which definitely exacerbate any issues a person may already have. How many people have mental illnesses that make their lives nearly unbearable which might be more bearable if they didn’t have to strain themselves at work every day to feed themselves? How many black people are looking for ways to deal with intergenerational trauma and a world in which their friends and family can be killed for nothing while walking down the street and the cop can get away with it?

My point is not that mental illnesses are not real- obviously people feel pain that can be helped by things like medication, and I usually leave psychologists off the table and focus on psychiatry as an institution because they can be separated, though not completely. My point is that the increasing medicalization of human pain and emotional pain is the result of a social and political set of trends which have made that a priority, not sort of untouchable scientific fact. If more people are diagnosed with mental disorders per year, that can tell us one of three things: either more people are sick, or we are including more people as sick, or both. It is not the result of science. When asked, in the face of evidence strongly suggesting that DSM III categories needed at the very least some cleaning up to make them more stable, reliable, etc to more accurately diagnose patients, why they didn’t cut diagnoses they didn’t find useful, DSM IV creators shrugged and said, “Well they were in the 3rd and it was easier to leave them.” When DSM III collaborators were asked the same thing, they gave the same answer and said their decisions around updating their manual were mostly based around a few debates between a very few members of the establishment. These categories have existed for years without much public debate/actual patient input as to their relevance, social implications (how many kleptomaniacs of color do you know of?), or origins. Frankly, most psychiatrists who are not very high up in their field have no say in its terminology. So at the very least it is an establishment controlled by a small group of very powerful doctors, often paid off by pharmaceutical companies which only have to show 2 positive trials to the FDA (regardless of the number of negative studies, the structure of those studies, etc) in order to get drugs onto the market and onto the scrip pads of overworked, stretched out psychiatrists who see their patients for 30 minutes perhaps every two weeks.

The question is not “is mental illness real” at all, because obviously people have symptoms which can be grouped into diagnositc labels. That’s not something I think should be up for debate at all. The question is, how useful is the medicalization of those symptoms, and how useful is the psychiatric establishment’s presumption that those symptoms arise specifically from the disorder itself (which conveniently cannot be measured or tested for in most cases) rather than that these symptoms often occur naturally in groupings? I’ve read the process of medicalization described as how constellations are formed- they do not exist in and of themselves (they are just stars) but get grouped by our perceptions, politics, histories, and mythologies into patterns which we can then see on the sky, even though we wrote them their ourselves. For example, depression has a fairly well-defined set of diagnostic criteria. But causation is left completely unaccounted for by the diagnostic model, something that would be unthinkable in any other medical field. If one of my best friends dies tomorrow, it makes sense that I would be extremely depressed for weeks, perhaps months. This is clinical depression, as much as clinical depression that seems to pop up from nowhere is clinical depression. But they do not describe the same phenomenon. Likewise, I know a ton of people with OCD actually. Many have it running in the family- most disorders seem to have at least biological components. But many have no other family members with OCD (that they know of) and instead developed OCD as a coping mechanism for childhood trauma, wherein they were able to control how many times the light switch got flicked before bed even if they could not control their beatings at the hands of abusive parents. The end result is the same, but these are fundamentally different situations and psychiatry has no way to account for this yet because en masse it is disinterested in listening to actual patient narratives and talking about pain, trauma, social factors like how terrible it feels to be poor, etc etc. If I went to a doctor with low sodium levels, they would ask me things to make sure that this was not the result of something like a low sodium diet, or exercising to exhaustion too often, and make a diagnosis based on other biological markers. Psychiatrists don’t have this, and are more interested in treating disorders in the form of walking bodies than in helping people deal with their pain.

I think when an establishment has the power to medicate, imprison, discredit the experiences of, and abuse its own patients it legitimacy must be critiqued and its power must be called into question. I actually had rather neutral/only mildly negative experiences with the psychiatric establishment, and I still consider them traumatizing- I don’t discuss my life and feelings in terms of them anymore, but I have diagnoses listed on the books somewhere that take pain that resulted from a lot of things (including, yeah, family history and a likely genetic predisposition but also years and years of intense emotional and sometimes physical abuse and trauma resulting from that) and list them as a diagnostic code. I am not even particularly anti-medication itself: I took meds for a few years to help me function on a daily basis when my pain was at its worst, and there’s no shame in taking medication for any period of time if it helps you live your life. The question is not “do people have mental illnesses” at all but “How can psychiatry actually respond to patient needs and desires and histories and experiences organically rather than stuffing them into boxes and THEN dealing with them as patients?” I have friends with BPD who’ve had to lie about receiving manipulative treatment from doctors to get out of psych wards for fear that they’d be seen as manipulating their doctors, I have friends who’ve almost died from eating disorders that weren’t recognized because they weren’t thin enough for doctors to care yet (more likely to happen to women and that is DEFINITELY ideological- make yourself even smaller or we don’t care), and on and on and on. My premise is not that psychiatry is never useful (of course it is, and any time that it is and people decide to interact with it to make their lives easier I’m 500000000000% in favor of that), and frankly my views have moderated a bit since I updated that tag regularly, but I do think that we need to be having conversations about why people are asked to hand over total control of their life stories to doctors who don’t trust them to know themselves.

Open your eye

Society astonishes me sometimes…Can we lessen the superficial and strengthen depth? Can we stop fawning over actors, artists and models? We as young minds should lift up our scientists, astronomers, biologists, chemists, and mathematicians …from past to present days. Learn from people like Tesla, Einstein, Galileo, Pierre & Marie Curie, Moseley, Pasteur, Franklin, Rontgen and so one and so on… Let’s lift our modern day scientists (Goodall, Gellar, Bonner, Bard etc.) that are working hard and trying to make society better..Some of them trying to create free energy technology that is being suppressed..Isn’t it odd that in this day and age we still don’t have free energy (technology is there, innovations are happening). The power structure is so addicted to control and sustaining the oligarchy..These people are  hell bent to maintaining the status quo because it only benefits them.  Here we are accepting it in this macroeconomic prison..with our blinders on..being entertained by meaningless things.
No technological progress…none on the scale of something that can create a far superior, clean, free and happy society. It is infuriating to see The USA going backwards and seeing other countries  making strides in technology and innovation. Being open minded, embracing science (instead of forcing christian ideology and dogma onto the democratic process). A clear separation of church and state. Uniting people instead of dividing.
Change happens when one open their minds..Think critically and think like there is no box at all.  Learn about meditation,  connecting with nature and awakening the dormant mind. People don’t even realize how powerful the mind is. You don’t need additional means to do this..Training the mind and opening oneself up to the possibilities. No drugs, clean and healthy food.   During mediations in nature there is always this little voice in the back of my mind that says that this is not how society should be…an existential crisis about our conscience and social development. We should be welcome progress, change, growth, This is the destiny of humanity. Earth is a school moving through space and we are here to learn certain lessons about self realisation and self actualisation..and creating a new world.  There is power in the many, only if they are acting like one. that is when resonance happens…. Just one of many thoughts I have during the day..

Feminism matches every single qualifying factor of pseudoscience. It’s all about narrative, self confirmation of that narrative, theoretical extrapolation, then further self confirmation of the extrapolations. It has no interest in falsifying itself. It has no predictive power, it just has a system of interpretation that adjusts it’s narrative to fit the evidence ex post facto. It defines no limitations for itself nor makes any room for its claims to be false. It presumes value judgements and does more prescribing than describing. It’s full of jargon, explanations that make a lot of assumptions about individual’s thoughts and collectives, suggestion and indoctrination techniques, and frankly religion-like themes. Claims largely rely on debunked claims and personal experience. It’s research rejects peer review by other fields, claiming any attempt to falsify is a conspiracy of hatred, bigotry, and violence. It makes the same claims about skepticism and believers largely refuse to explain their position or back their claims, resorting to personal attacks and personal tactics, often asserting that others need to prove a negative -that they are not bigots (highly arbitrary). Feminist proponents regularly shut down debates that they do not fully control, only allowing their own view to be heard. All disagreement or conflict of information is seen as conspiracy against the ideology. Feminism functions as an ideology focused on achieving recruitment and authority in all areas of life. In some cases, feminists mock science or reject it as a social construct, often claiming it is a creation of grandios societal ills.

anonymous asked:

Starvation mode is a myth. Everyone who keeps saying they're in it and don't lose weight because of it are lazy in my eyes. You can't not lose weight by eating too less. That's complete and utter bull and it pisses me off.

Starvation mode is not a myth. 

Aneroxia Nervosa: physiological causes of starvation (tw for numbers)

Signs & Symptoms of Starvation Mode

Nutritional Rehabilitation in Anorexia


I can’t get mad at you for thinking this way, especially because I’m assuming this is your disorder talking. You can’t discredit science because it inconveniences your ideology about holding on to disordered behaviors, though. Every body is different, which means that EVEN PEOPLE WHO DO NOT HAVE AN ED AND ARE SIMPLY LOSING WEIGHT THE HEALTHY WAY HAVE A HIGHER CHANCE OF REACHING A WEIGHT LOSS PLATEAU IF THEY ARE NOT EATING THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF CALORIES PER DAY. 

“You can’t not lose weight by eating too less. That’s complete and utter bull and it pisses me off.”

No, you can lose water weight (which is absolutely meaningless) and muscle. Think about it. For every single person out there with an ED that has either been to inpatient or done some sort of outpatient recovery plan, I’m willing to bet 90% of us would be able to attest to the physical pain that accompanies that process. Anyone who has tried to recover on their own can also probably empathize. Your body gives you hell during restoration because among the multitude of health consequences that come with an ED, your metabolism frequently slows down. 

Starvation mode is not a myth. I’m sorry if this seems harsh. I could not publish this as a confession because it seems dangerously close to stepping over the line of pro-ED thought simply because you used the phrase [they] “are lazy in my eyes.” If you do not see how this is incorrect or malicious, then I hope these articles are helpful. I couldn’t ignore this message either. Again, I apologize for my tone. In this case I accept full responsibility for being so passionate about this. Countering harmful beliefs that many people with EDs have is something I care deeply about. I believe people are entitled to seek recovery when they feel ready, and I do not intend to shame people who are pro-ED simply because they are dealing with this disorder differently. I cannot, however, allow this blog to spread messages like this without showing the other side which disproves this unhealthy way of thinking. 

Take care of yourself, please. 

- K

my favourite thing about person of interest is that it started out as your standard procedural appealing to the middle aged demographic who watch things like ncis and csi miami starring your typical straight white male action hero with simple plotlines that didn’t require much more brain power than being able to turn on a television and then they snuck them into a world of hardcore science fiction with radical egalitarian ideologies and queer romance and now they can’t stop bitching about it i’m so happy

Submission, Commitment, and “Sacred Science”: part 3 of “Ideological Totalism and Trans/Gender Theory as Cult.”

(Continued from part two. See the entire piece here as it is posted.)

As stated in part one, a group practicing extreme ideological totalism, or, “cult”, need not have a religious basis or even a central leader. A single, conspiratorial group is not necessary. The totalist system of thought can thrive via linked cells and readily identifiable in-group social signals/networks.

Lifton wrote of ideological totalism and thought reform in the 60’s. The subsequent development of the internet surely gives the totalism of these “linked cells” and “social networks” more of a chance to spread and thrive.

Submission and Commitment

A totalist system without centralized leadership will still have “stars” and people who are rewarded for espousing and demonstrating the doctrine without question. Even further in-group rewards are meted for those who are fully integrated within the totalist system. Some of the more obvious social rewards are praise, popularity, additional responsibilities/roles, and increasing importance of the person within the group.  These stars/heroes/role models serve the function of “leader” in smaller cells, and help faciliate members giving themselves over psychologically to someone elses guidance and care.  In order to climb in the social ranks of totalist ideology, there must be complete, zealous, practically unquestioning trust in the doctrine. And the status quo will often remain quite intact, even in a group that claims to be radically overthrowing it. We see this in the trans milieu as females (”dfabs”) are vilified, lesbians identity is erased and co-opted, rape culture is nurtured as lesbians are encouraged to have an “open mind” about sexual contact with males, and males (transwomen) dominate the conversation. 

One of the more immediately effective ways of showing ones-self to be a “true believer” is to encourage and exact the public punishment and shunning of anyone questioning the doctrine. Examples of this, as well as further commentary on this necessary submission, will be explored in depth in a later section. But first, a bit about what the doctrine of a totalist group tends to look like, and why it’s different from other radical organizations. 

Sacred Science”
A totalist group, or cult, will operate under an ideology that is held to be true for all people at all times. This doctrine, or dogma really, is held as the ultimate moral vision for the ordering of human existence. It appears to be both inspired and scientific all at once. Psychiatrist Robert Lifton calls this a “sacred science.”
Whether or not the cult is religious or uses terms like “sacred” is irrelevant. The dogma is shown to be sacred in other ways- such as the forbidding of questioning the basic tenets. A cult does not need a central leader or a central God, because the ideas can be a kind of God. In the blending of transcendent ideas (the essence of womanhood, gender is a feeling, my gender is innate, etc.) and exaggerated claims of logic and scientific precision, it becomes not only a moral vision but an ultimate science. Therefore, anyone who would get in the way of this perfect scientific and moral system is a threat and must be silenced. Anyone who would question it, or even harbor alternative ideas, becomes both immoral and unscientific. An ideology may not overtly state as much, but it will show in totalist practice.

This “sacred science” appeals to the individual member because it offers a totally enclosed worldview, and this feels safe and secure. In the unification of mystical and logical thinking and experience, there is room for systematic pseudo-scientific arguments (brain sex theory, gender as innate) as well as sweeping statements made on a personal level (everything will be better in my life once I start HRT, “cis people” are different than me because they are comfortable with their gender, etc.) In blending “scientific truth” and mystical/personal experience, there is the opportunity of transcending both and entering into an intense feeling of having finally found the key, the truth, the fix.

The problem is that this feeling is totally unsustainable in the long run. Human beings seek to grapple with knowledge, they seek experience and self-expression and creative development. The cult’s system of totalist ideology forbids this, so harboring or being confronted with ideas that contradict or ignore the sacred science can bring a great deal of distress, fear, and guilt. Since there is virtually no escape from the totalist demands of the ideology, the subject is forbidden from engaging in a truly receptive search for truth. 

And so, caught between this place of the ideological system eventually evaporating and having nothing to replace it with, the member must dig their heels in. One way to do so is to begin a negative loop of fighting with anyone else who would question the ideology. The threat of an ultimate enemy is convenient for this purpose (and we will explore othering and the persecution complex in a later section.) Dehumanizing and engaging with the spectre of “TERFS” is the perfect foil for this process. One can also double down in a prolonged process of entering deeper into the cult. This is seen most clearly in people who start off as “non-dysphoric, non-transitioning” and then enter into the system of physical transition. Thus, the member can now push back against family and friends, lament gatekeeping in the process of getting letters from a doctor, get started on hormones, raise money for surgeries, schedule and go through with them, and so on. Every step of the way they are “love bombed” and rewarded by the cult, and these methods prolong the trip to that inevitable event horizon when they will run out of means of reaching that transcendent state.  The knowledge that this worldview will not hold is further suppressed, as is realizing that real life is not as absolute as the “sacred science” has made it out to be.

Next in Part Four: Mileau Control.

(To be continued under my “ideological totalism and the cult of gender” tag. As subsequent posts are made, they will all be included on this single page.)

Is race biologically real?

A clutch of books published this year argue the question. All miss the point.

Michael Yudell's Race Unmasked and Robert Sussman's The Myth of Race can be read as inadvertent retorts to former New York Times journalist Nicholas Wade's A Troublesome Inheritance, published while the former were in the press. Wade’s book is by far the most insidious, but all three are polemics that become mired in proving (in Wade’s case) or disproving (in the others’) whether race is biological and therefore ‘real’. This question is a dead end, a distraction from what is really at stake in this debate: human social equality.

Race is certainly real — ask any African American. It originated long before the science of genetics, as sets of phenotypes and stereotypes. These correlate with haplotypes, clusters of genetic variation. In this sense, race is genetically 'real’. But those correlations depend on judgement calls. Wade cites population-genetics studies that identify three principal races: caucasian, African and East Asian. Elsewhere he cites five, adding Australasian and Native American; or seven, splitting caucasians into people from Europe, the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent. A study in Scientific Reports this year identified 19 “ancestral components”, including Mozabites, Kalash and Uygurs. Palaeogeneticist Svante Pääbo and others have revealed the underlying human genetic variation to be a series of gradients. Whether and how one parses that variation depends on one’s training, inclination and acculturation. So: race is real and race is genetic, but that does not mean that race is 'really’ genetic.

The completion of the draft human-genome sequence in 2000 led some optimists to forecast the end of race, but use of the term in the biomedical literature has actually increased since then. For clinicians, race is a matter of pragmatism. Although each of us is genetically and epigenetically unique, our ancestry leaves footprints in our genomes. Consequently, clinicians use familiar racial categories such as 'black’ or 'Ashkenazi Jewish’ as crude markers of genotypes, in a step towards individualized medicine. For them, the reality of race is immaterial; diagnosis and treatment are what count.

Debates over the genetic reality of race, then, are not mainly scientific, but social. They deploy the cultural authority of science — considered society’s most objective way of understanding the world — as a fig leaf for positions motivated explicitly or implicitly by ideology. All three of these books argue that if the proof or disproof of race is scientific, it must be true. The author must be right. More importantly, his opponents must be wrong.

A full-throated, intellectually rigorous anti-racism must critically assess both biological and cultural evidence about race. It must acknowledge that no work on race science can be free of ideology — and, precisely for that reason, it must not place historical actors before a moral green screen showing an image of contemporary values. Rather, it must set the stage for each scene with meticulous, empathetic historical detail. Such work would allow the scientific study of 'racial superiority’ — inherently grounded in subjectivity and bias — to fall on its own sword.

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