Essay date: April 17, 2020

The Depressing Truth About SSRIs

why psychedelic therapy must REPLACE modern psychiatry rather than simply complement it




open letter to MAPS, Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Therapy, urging its researchers to reject the Big Pharma pill-mill paradigm of modern psychiatry

i>Open letter to MAPS, the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies:

I keep hearing MAPS researchers use the phrase "those who don't respond to regular anti-depressants" when talking about clinical trials. This gives the impression that anti-depressants usually work just fine, but that is just plain wrong - although psychiatrists have been paid millions by Big Pharma to go on shows like "Oprah" and say otherwise.

If such pills are really the silver bullets they are purported to be, why is America more depressed than ever, statistically speaking, decades after these silver bullets hit the market?

Many of these medications are highly addictive and harder to kick than heroin! Heroin can be beat in one grueling week. Anti-depressants can take months as the brain chemistry attempts to return to normal. Some of these meds can NEVER be stopped. I wanted to get off of Effexor, but my doctor told me not to bother because recidivism rates are over 95% after three years.

{^About one in eight men and one in four women are addicted to Big Pharma antidepressants, according to psychiatrist Julie Holland. And now the pharmaceutical companies are going after the toddler market. This is a huge but silent scandal, especially when you consider Robert Whitaker's finding that antidepressants actually CAUSE the chemical imbalances that they purport to fix.}{

And yet MAPS researchers are silent on these issues. I can only guess that Big Pharma's influence is keeping them from recognizing the obvious. MAPS researchers should be pushing for psychedelic therapy to REPLACE modern antidepressants, not simply to eke out therapy for those supposedly rare cases that can't be "helped" by these deliberately addictive drugs (these annuities for Big Pharma executives).

And what do we even mean when we say that an antidepressant "works"? In the book "Psychedelic Medicine," Dr. Richard Louis Miller tells the story of a reporter who wrote a first-person story about Prozac. The reporter was bullish on the drug at first, saying that the medicine was definitely making him happier. But then he went to a family funeral and found to his horror that he felt nothing at all. Was Prozac working? You might say yes, it was working all too well. (This is not a surprise, since American psychiatry has a long history of defining "cures" as "treatments that render the patient more docile," as opposed to "treatments that help the patient achieve self-fulfillment in life.")

Anti-depressants are working great for Big Pharma, of course, bringing in $40 billion a year. They are swimming in dough from monthly purchases by addicts. But those who take the drugs are turned into eternal patients and are guinea pigs for substances that were never properly trialed for lifetime use. Worse yet, such patients are ineligible for participation in most new psychedelic therapies for fear of Serotonin Toxicity Syndrome.

MAPS researchers should start speaking truth to power and tell Big Pharma that its whole pill-mill approach to psychiatry is wrong. As a victim of the status quo, I for one would appreciate to hear someone in the field actually recognizing that "eternal patients" like myself exist. I don't expect I'll ever get an apology from the psychiatry business for addicting me for a lifetime to a mind-numbing drug (one that offers no self-insight whatsoever), but it would be nice if someone in the field would at least acknowledge that there is a problem here.

That's why I won't be fully happy with MAPS until they start promoting psychedelic therapy as a REPLACEMENT for the status quo, rather than as a mere helpful adjunct for the Big Pharma pill mill.



July 12, 2022




Where are the conspiracy theorists when we need them? They could at least open our minds to some disturbing possibilities. Like, for instance, I sometimes wonder if Prozac wasn't designed to turn folks into neo-liberals. I know my own politics veered right after a few years of Prozac use. This was the same time that my musical skills decreased, at least when it came to playing in natural sync with my fellow musicians. There suddenly seemed to arise a new brief but destructive mental step of conscious reflection between the impulse and the act, rendering me nervous and uncertain in circumstances in which the thought of nervousness had never occurred before.

Of course, unlike the Drug Warrior, I know that one swallow does not make a summer, so perhaps the mental changes described above can be explained without reference to Prozac. My only point here is that no one seems to be considering the possibility that antidepressants are changing personalities in ways that are not necessarily consistent with the interests of the antidepressant user. Of course the silence is to be expected, since the moneyed interests support a media narrative that turns SSRIs into whole milk. And as with whole milk, all reported downsides are blamed on the user, not on the substance. Can't handle milk? Why, you freak! You must be lactose-intolerant! Can't handle a given SSRI? No problem, we just have to keep weaning you off and on different KINDS of SSRIs until we find the one that's "right" for you.

Speaking of which, it's the new feminine small talk: what meds are you on? How many? How long have you been taking it? Do you think you'll switch to another SSRI any time soon?

And this in a country that is trying desperately to get Americans to say no to drugs? 1 in 4 American women are on multiple drugs every day of their life and the Drug Warrior pretends to not notice as they advocate 20-year jail terms for folks who reach down and use the plants and fungi that grow at their very feet.

Next essay: The War on Plants
Previous essay: The Joy of Drug Testing

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This is your Brain on Godsend Plant Medicine: Stop the Drug War from demonizing godsend plant medicines. Psychoactive plant medicines are godsends, not devil spawn.

End Drug War Sharia: Re-Legalize Plants: Speak common sense to power: end the war against Mother Nature's medicines.

Monticello Betrayed Thomas Jefferson: By demonizing plant medicine, the Drug War overthrew the Natural Law upon which Jefferson founded America -- and brazenly confiscated the Founding Father's poppy plants in 1987, in a symbolic coup against Jeffersonian freedoms.

End the Christian Science Drug War: The war on plant medicine is the establishment of the Christian Science religion, which tell us it is somehow moral to do without godsend plant medicine.

Drug Testing For Tobacco And Liquor Decal: Slap this sticker on a urinal to remind urinating drug warriors of the hypocrisy of their war on godsend plant medicine.

The Dea Poisoned Americans Bumper Sticker: In the 1980s, DEA Chief John C. Lawn laced marijuana plants with Paraquat, a weed killer that has since been shown to cause Parkinson's Disease.

No Drug War Keychains: The key to ending the Drug War is to spread the word about the fact that it is Anti-American, unscientific and anti-minority (for starters)

Stop Demonizing Plant Medicine Car Bumper Magnet: Today the word

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You have been reading essays by the Drug War Philosopher, Brian Quass, at abolishthedea.com. Brian has written for Sociodelic and is the author of The Drug War Comic Book, which contains 150 political cartoons illustrating some of the seemingly endless problems with the war on drugs -- many of which only Brian seems to have noticed, by the way, judging by the recycled pieties that pass for analysis these days when it comes to "drugs." That's not surprising, considering the fact that the category of "drugs" is a political category, not a medical or scientific one.

A "drug," as the world defines the term today, is "a substance that has no good uses for anyone, ever, at any time, under any circumstances" -- and, of course, there are no substances of that kind: even cyanide and the deadly botox toxin have positive uses: a war on drugs is therefore unscientific at heart, to the point that it truly qualifies as a superstition, one in which we turn inanimate substances into boogie-men and scapegoats for all our social problems.

The Drug War is, in fact, the philosophical problem par excellence of our time, premised as it is on a raft of faulty assumptions (notwithstanding the fact that most philosophers today pretend as if the drug war does not exist). It is a war against the poor, against minorities, against religion, against science, against the elderly, against the depressed, against those in pain, against children in hospice care, and against philosophy itself. It outlaws substances that have inspired entire religions, Nazi fies the English language and militarizes police forces nationwide. In short, it causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some, meanwhile violating the Natural Law upon which Thomas Jefferson founded America.

If you believe in freedom and democracy, in America and around the world, please stay tuned for more philosophically oriented broadsides against the outrageous war on godsend medicines, AKA the war on drugs.

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