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In praise of doctor hopping

by Ballard Quass, the Drug War Philosopher

June 2, 2022

he DEA monitors prescriptions to make sure that doctors are not going overboard in prescribing addictive pills -- but this is politics and philosophy at work, not science. For what constitutes "going overboard"? Except in cases of outright poisoning, that is an aesthetic question, not a scientific one. After all, the DEA has no problem with the fact that one in four American women are chemically dependent on antidepressants for life. So apparently it's not "going overboard" if you prescribe multiple addictive pills for the same patient to be taken every single day of their life until death do they part. Why then is the DEA upset about a dependency on more exhilarating drugs, like opium and coca? These latter drugs are merely potentially addictive, after all, while the addictive quality of SSRIs is a feature of those medicines, not a bug. Besides, it's well known that one can live a full life while yet using heroin or morphine every day of that life. The problems only come when one withdraws from the med, but problems also come when withdrawing from SSRIs, so much so, in fact, that some Big Pharma drugs, like Effexor, have a 95% recidivism rate for those long-term users who seek to kick that habit. (This is a closely guarded secret, by the way. I once had a psychiatrist who was fired for sharing this factoid with me.)

The DEA has no scientific reason to pooh-pooh the so-called "hard drugs" while affirming Big Pharma nostrums. Rather the DEA first has a philosophical idea of what constitutes "the good life," and then they crack down accordingly. They believe that this good life is predictable, low-key and not subject to major mood swings: in short, the good life, according to the DEA, results in a good consumer, and pills are good to the extent that they lead to that end. Yet some of us want to live a fully engaged life in which we're constantly involved in the world, constantly wondering anew at mother nature, constantly feeling and experiencing, without any overreliance on the capitalist system and the next big and expensive thing. These are the live-wires of whom Jack Kerouac wrote: "The ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn burn like fabulous yellow roman candles." (The Effexor I take daily reminds me more of a lobotomy on the instalment plan than a roman candle.)

Yet, the DEA, and the establishment it represents, are intimidated by such lives and so demonize those drugs that facilitate such a lifestyle. They call them "crutches," although they never tell us why Big Pharma meds are not crutches as well. It's just more Drug War hypocrisy: Big Pharma pills are important "meds", naturally occurring godsend medicines are "crutches."

Newspeak aside: Doctor Feelgoods are simply doctors who prescribe what their patient wants rather than what the DEA wants for that patient. But for the medical world to keep power, these doctors have to be suppressed, because in the age of criminalized plant medicine, it is the medical community that decides what we need, emotionally speaking, not the patient, and if we don't like their idea of the "good life," then tough luck. We can either play the game or incur the wrath of the medical gods by going "doctor hopping."

Of course, some Doctor Feelgoods take advantage of the poorly informed and young, but then so do psychiatrists, by putting them on meds that they will end up taking for life.

But when mature and responsible adults go to a doctor for mood medicine, they should ask and receive what THEY want, not what the medical community wants them to have based on that community's unspoken assumptions about what constitutes the good life.

Oh, and when a Doctor Feelgood dies, the patients will commit the big Drug War no-no of going "doctor hopping" in search of another doctor with the same prescription philosophy. Respectable doctors scream that this is morally wrong, but there is nothing wrong with doctor hopping. In fact, doctor hopping is a duty, if we're to be true to ourselves and our own needs and desires rather than those of the doctor (who in some of our cases is decades younger than we are). Doctor hopping would only be wrong if we assume that mental health therapy is entirely scientific and not based on assumptions about what constitutes the good life for individual patients. But anyone who believes that is kidding themselves. Mental health specialists may like to think that they're scientific because they're using pills that target a chemical imbalance, but that has long since been proven to be wrong: in fact the psychiatric pill mill dispenses meds that cause the chemical imbalances that they purport to fix. Even if it were not so, I want the prescriptions I receive to reflect my own needs and desires, not the needs and desires that the materialist creator of SSRIs thought I should have.

In short, there's nothing scientific about the crackdown on "Doctor Feelgoods." It's an esthetic call to decry their prescription practices. Of course, there are always "bad eggs" among every type of doctor, and some will abuse their position to prescribe addictive drugs to the immature. But the answer to these threats lies in education combined with re-legalization of mother nature's medicines, which would allow empathic doctors to shamanically, as it were, shift patients from one drug to another through guided incentivizing empathogenic journeys. In other words, even addiction is not the end of the world when psychoactive medicine is understood and used aggressively by empathic guides, rather than being feared and used in such a miserly way that we outlaw nature's pharmacopoeia almost entirely. In still other words, the answer to any addiction - to the extent that the addiction is not desired by the patient him or herself - is to harness the therapeutic power of entheogens and empathogens, after which psychiatric counselling can finally work like it was always supposed to do, with an honest and willing confab between client and healer. Indeed, some say that one day of MDMA therapy can do the work of years of counselling.

We need only to break the medical world's vise-like self-serving grip on the keys to the medicine cabinet, re-legalize Mother Nature, and let patients, not the DEA, decide how - and how much - they are allowed to think and feel in this life.

Author's Follow-up: September 30, 2022

Speaking of drugs that give you years' worth of 'counseling' via one drug experience: Paul Stamets tells us, in the 2019 documentary "Fantastic Fungi," that he was able to cure himself of his childhood stuttering problem thanks to one afternoon that he spent under the influence of a psilocybin mushroom (you know, one of the many psychoactive substances that the DEA tells us has no potential therapeutic uses whatsoever).

Author's Follow-up: April 21, 2023

Incidentally, the Drug Warriors are libeling God himself when they tell us that drugs have no positive uses and are "junk" and "dope." In the book of Genesis, the deity tells us that the world he created was good. For this reason, the Catholic church has always found that good or bad resides in individuals, and that they are labels that cannot meaningfully be ascribed to "things." In other words, the Drug War advances a religious viewpoint, one at odds with Christianity.

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Addiction Tweets

ME: "What are you gonna give me for my depression, doc? MDMA? Laughing gas? Occasional opium smoking? Chewing of the coca leaf?" DOC: "No, I thought we'd fry your brain with shock therapy instead."
Until we get rid of all these obstacles to safe and informed use, it's presumptuous to explain problematic drug use with theories about addiction. Drug warriors are rigging the deck in favor of problematic use. They refuse to even TEACH non-problematic use.
Until we legalize ALL psychoactive drugs, there will be no such thing as an addiction expert. In the meantime, it's insulting to be told by neuroscience that I'm an addictive type. It's pathologizing my just indignation at psychiatry's niggardly pharmacopoeia.
We don't need people to get "clean." We need people to start living a fulfilling life. The two things are different.
Chesterton might as well have been speaking about the word 'addiction' when he wrote the following: "It is useless to have exact figures if they are exact figures about an inexact phrase."
The government causes problems for those who are habituated to certain drugs. Then they claim that these problems are symptoms of an illness. Then folks like Gabriel Mate come forth to find the "hidden pain" in "addicts." It's one big morality play created by drug laws.
Chesterton wrote that, once you begin outlawing things on grounds of health, you open a Pandora's box. This is because health is not a quality, it's a balance. To decide legality based on 'health' grounds thus opens a Pandora's box of different points of view.
Using the billions now spent on caging users, we could end the whole phenomena of both physical and psychological addiction by using "drugs to fight drugs." But drug warriors do not want to end addiction, they want to keep using it as an excuse to ban drugs.
Jim Hogshire described sleep cures that make physical withdrawal from opium close to pain-free. As for "psychological addiction," there are hundreds of elating drugs that could be used to keep the ex-user's mind from morbidly focusing on a drug whose use has become problematic.
And this is before we even start spending those billions on research that are currently going toward arresting minorities.
When doctors try to treat addiction without using any godsend medicines, they are at best Christian Scientists and at worst quacks. They are like the doctors in Moliere's "M
As Moliere demonstrated in the hilarious finale, anyone can be THAT kind of doctor by mastering a little Latin and walking around pompously in the proper uniform.
Like the pompous white-coated doctor in the movie "Four Good Days" who ignores the entire formulary of mother nature and instead throws the young heroin user on a cot for 3 days of cold turkey and a shot of Naltrexone: price tag $3,000.

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You have been reading an article entitled, In praise of doctor hopping published on June 2, 2022 on For more information about America's disgraceful drug war, which is anti-patient, anti-minority, anti-scientific, anti-mother nature, imperialistic, the establishment of the Christian Science religion, a violation of the natural law upon which America was founded, and a childish and counterproductive way of looking at the world, one which causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some, visit the drug war philosopher, at (philosopher's bio; go to top of this page)