Law School Discussion

Law Students => Current Law Students => Topic started by: lgn on November 23, 2005, 08:25:56 PM

Title: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: lgn on November 23, 2005, 08:25:56 PM
By Lindsey Miller

There is much anecdotal basis for concern about the collective distress and unhappiness of law students and lawyers. This anecdotal evidence is confirmed by many empirical studies. At the University of Arizona, a study of students entering law school showed that they had essentially normal psychological markers; by the first year, those markers had shifted to major psychological distress, and the negative changes continued through law school and the students' early careers. The students had higher rates of clinical depression, with an incidence of 20-40%. A study conducted by the author and a psychologist confirmed these findings. Another study showed that law students have 8 to 15 times the rate of clinically elevated anxiety, hostility, depression, and other symptoms compared to the general population.

Research on lawyers shows similar results. A 1990 John Hopkins study showed that lawyers ranked highest of 104 occupational groups for incidence of major depression. Lawyers have the fifth-highest incidence of suicide and 5 to 15 times the normal incidence of clinical psychological distress, including high levels of substance abuse.

This isn't a common topic of discussion at law schools, despite awareness of the problem. Some typical reactions from law schools include:

1) It's just as bad in med school: Research shows it isn't as bad in med school. Even if it were, this does not mean we should not address the problem. This is just a form of denial in order to avoid confronting the problem.

2)People come to law school that way: The studies quoted above show that this is not the case.

3)It's not my job/I'm not trained for this/The problem needs more study/It isn't that bad/It's always been that way/It's the nature of the business/That's the way the world is: These statements do not justify ignoring serious problems. They merely deflect and minimize the problem, denying its existence in order to continue normal operations without grappling with unpleasant realities. Law professors often lecture their students on professional ethics, civility, and other professional obligations. At the same time, they are ignoring their own obligations to try prevent or alleviate the distress of their students.

It is inherently unpleasant to reflect on these issues; law professors may feel they are undermining their own enterprise or creating unwanted anxiety if the problem is openly acknowledged. Further, professors are unclear on the causes of, and solutions to, the problem. Professors are not trained for these kind of discussions, particularly the non-rational, non-analytical nature of the matters. Professors may feel put upon as well; they are merely reproducing the kind of legal education they received and for which they evidently had great aptitude. As a result few Faculties address the issue at all. The pervasiveness of the problem and of institutional denial of it indicates that it is the tenets and beliefs at the core of our educational culture which would be threatened by an open examination of the problem. These beliefs include:

1) The top-ten percent tenet: The belief that success in law school is demonstrated solely by high grades, appointments to law review, etc.

2) The contingent-worth problem: The belief that one's personal worth, the opinions of teachers and potential employers, and therefore one's happiness and security in life depend on one's place in the academic hierarchy. Although academic rankings are present in all educational settings, in law school these considerations dominate collective thinking and become identified with personal worth.

3) The American dream: The belief that financial affluence, influence, recognition and other external symbols of achievement are what is good in life, and that academic success in law school will lead to these things.

4) Thinking "like a lawyer": Defining people primarily according to their legal rights, and trying to understand, prevent and resolve problems by applying legal rules to those rights, usually in a zero-sum manner. This involves close inspection of words and writing to look for defects in an adversary's position or which may create future problems for a client. It is fundamentally negative, critical, pessimistic, and depersonalizing. This method of thinking is conveyed and understood in law schools as a new and superior way of thinking, not a strictly limited legal tool.

These beliefs and thought processes have an atomistic worldview and a zero-sum message about life. Nothing much matters beyond winning or losing, and there is always a loser for each winner. The message for law students is to work very, very hard; excel in the competition for grades and honors; to feel good about accomplishments; get the respect of peers and teachers; get a desirable job; and be successful. As a result, fatigue and anxiety replaces initial enthusiasm, particularly leading up to the point of the posting of first-term grades.

The overall impact of this is isolating and threatening. The winners of the 'grades-race' feel a boost to their sense of personal worth, confidence and security, and feel valued in the institutional culture. They are then driven to maintain these feelings by reproducing their victories. The 'losers' have a diminished sense of personal worth, confidence and security. On top of this, the emphasis on 'thinking like a lawyer' discourages students from being themselves – they inhibit the expression or consideration of ideals, values and personal beliefs, and lose sight of the potential satisfaction arising from cooperation and win-win situations, resulting in a diminishing of enthusiasm and sense of relevance.

Ultimately, law school constructs teach students to put aside their personal life and health, and accept persistent discomfort, angst, isolation and depression as the price for becoming a lawyer. Similar constructs seem to drive law students when they become lawyers, in the contest for status, recognition, and higher salaries, regardless of the personal cost. Studies have shown that over 1/3 of lawyers reported 'clinical distress' in the area of interpersonal sensitivity, measures of self-esteem, and security based on the need to compare oneself to others, a rate 15 times that of the general population. As well, one of the largest maladaptive shifts in first year law is an increasing concern for image and appearance. At the same time, research shows that neither high grades nor high salaries mitigate general depression and distress in law students and lawyers, respectively. In other words, the top grades and salaries so emphasized in law school do not improve one's likelihood to be happy.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: lgn on November 23, 2005, 08:26:10 PM
A recent study of well-being and satisfaction showed that universal psychological needs include self-esteem, relatedness to others, authenticity, competence and security. Security is a foundational need – without it, the other universal needs become impossible to satisfy. As well, empirical studies show that one's motivational style (the "why") and what one's goals and values are (the "what") can predict positive or negative mental well-being. Classic humanism sees people as striving to be their best and to improve their society; psychological dissatisfaction results from any impediments to personal and social integration. This has been confirmed by studies that show that goals such as money, power or image do not produce life satisfaction – these 'extrinsic goals' don't produce a good life and may undermine it. Students who identified money, image or influence as being important for life satisfaction consistently scored the lowest well-being in the study, while students identifying intrinsic goals such as personal growth, intimacy and community integration experienced higher well-being. The content of one's goals can affect the degree to which the universal psychological needs are met: intrinsic goals maximize one's opportunity to fulfill these needs, while extrinsic goals tend to replace or distract from the pursuit of satisfying goals and thus fulfillment of needs.

These studies raise clear implications for legal education and culture. If the law "success" paradigm is focused on grades, external recognition, money or position, tension and insecurity result, thus minimizing the satisfaction and well-being of law students and lawyers. As well, the drive for external goals supplants drives for growth, actualization, intimacy and community. Anxiety and depression is thus likely to result, since, regardless of how successful you are under this paradigm, internal satisfaction will never be achieved. The longitudinal study of first year law students conducted by the author and Kennon Sheldon confirms these conclusions. Arriving first-years had healthier well-being, values and motives than other undergraduates; within 6 months, there were marked decreases in well-being and life-satisfaction, with marked increases in depression, negative affect, and physical symptoms. Overall motivation and valuing patterns shifted to extrinsic factors such as appearance and image, and away from altruism and community orientation.

These findings also refute the suggestion that the problems of law students is a result of self-selection, since the group began healthier, happier and with more optimal motivations. As well, students who performed the best according to the law school 'success' paradigm – i.e. had the highest grades – immediately shifted away from service-oriented to lucrative, high-status career choices, even those who initially had the healthier, more intrinsic goals than other law students.

There are several attitudes and educational practices that can be reviewed to identify those which most negatively affect students. First, the predilection to work students exceptionally hard: consistently long hours of high-demand work drain personal resources and encourage students to ignore biological needs. Instead of preparing students for their professional obligations, it teaches students to accept constant stress as part of a law career. Once so taught, students are likely to make choices that continue that stress in their careers. Second, the contingent-worth and top-ten percent paradigms create tension by generating insecurity about future employment, competition between peers, a sense that one's worth is only as good as one's transcript and resume, and that, regardless of the rhetoric of professionalism, that personal character, values, ideals and intentions are irrelevant in the practice of law. Schools with a mandatory or strongly suggested grading curve aggravate this effect by creating the impression that the institution is pitting students against each other. Third, traditional teaching methods and overreliance on objective analysis promotes isolation of students from professors and each other, and encourages the abandonment of personal values and instincts in order to "think like a lawyer". Law students get the message that what they believe, at their core, is irrelevant and inappropriate in legal discourse. It is possible to teach in a way that complements, rather than supplants, a student's senses of self, values and beliefs.

As we think through the implications of declining happiness, psychological health and social consciousness in students and the profession, we must allocate resources and time to preventing or alleviating these problems. We need to identify individual and institutional practices that tend to undermine basic needs and values in order to amend them, and to ask what can be done to promote the basic universal psychological needs in students, how intrinsic motivation can be supported when teaching legal fundamentals, and how optimal human values in students can be promoted.

One direct approach to breaking institutional inertia is to publish empirical studies on the subject, which often dumbfounds faculty and students. Objective quantification of what you already know can have a powerful effect. After clarifying the need for attention to the problem, an overview of possible solutions is necessary. People need to realize that the American dream and the extrinsic goals of money, power and status are failed approaches to happiness; being true to oneself, helping others, maintaining close relationships and creating community are effective ways of creating a positive life experience.

Teachers must first reflect on their own experiences for fundamental needs, internal motivations, and intrinsic goal pursuits. Such experiences should be providing most of their life satisfaction, and this personal perspective will give confidence to professors in raising the topic with students. Students aware of the research findings will be able to make informed choices about priorities, careers, and the distribution of time in law school, and later, in their careers. As the creators of the legal profession, professors have an obligation to broaden the institutional service mission to include at least scientific research relating to the health, happiness and life satisfaction of students. They need to remind students that thinking 'like a lawyer' is a fundamentally negative worldview, though a useful tool. If applied generally in life, it will have undermining effects.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: jimmyjohn on November 23, 2005, 08:31:57 PM
yawn
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eloisa on November 23, 2005, 09:23:39 PM
This is something that far too few law students, let alone faculty or administrations, are willing to confront.  Law school is an incredibly isolating and agonizingly depressing place.  That's true no matter where you go.

We need to reclaim our own happiness.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: jimmyjohn on November 23, 2005, 09:47:28 PM
1) The top-ten percent tenet: The belief that success in law school is demonstrated solely by high grades, appointments to law review, etc.

2) The contingent-worth problem: The belief that one's personal worth, the opinions of teachers and potential employers, and therefore one's happiness and security in life depend on one's place in the academic hierarchy. Although academic rankings are present in all educational settings, in law school these considerations dominate collective thinking and become identified with personal worth.

Make some friends, sit back and laugh at your classmates' stupidity when they're freaking out.

Maybe law schools should teach people to stop being pussies. That would be another way to stop this phenomenon you speak of.

Trust me, if you don't worry about numbers 1 and 2, you will be fine.  Law students take themselves too seriously; consequently they take the entire system too seriously and it spirals into whatever problems they have.  I'm a believer in the theory that it's not just the law, it's the people drawn into the law that helps to contribute to the higher incidence of depression, anxiety, etc.   
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 24, 2005, 08:59:30 AM
I actually think these numbers are encouraging. Over half of law students and lawyers are NOT depressed or suicidal. Sounds fairly unalarming to me.

Besides, what's the take-home message here? Should we labor to make the study and practice of law like baking a f*king cake so that every backwoods Tom, male private part, and Oprah can practice law? Would that serve clients well?

It's hard and stressful for a reason. LAW IS IMPORTANT TO OUR SOCIETY! We have to get it right.

...or perhaps there's some pill a drug company could come up with to treat "law-itis." Then we could all medicate the stress right out of this thing. Just think, we'd all go to court happy as *&^% to be representing some fat f*ck who beat his baby to death when he was on PCP. It'd be like a family reunion every time the *&^% hit the fan. We'd be all hugging and blowing sunshine up each others' asses.

How bout a refill on my prescription, doc?

"Dark side of law school," my ass. Take responsibility for your own emotions, or get the f*ck out. We're privileged to be here. Every one of us.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: 19guy on November 24, 2005, 11:46:39 AM
"I actually think these numbers are encouraging. Over half of law students and lawyers are NOT depressed or suicidal. Sounds fairly unalarming to me."

Are you crazy? Only the skewed perpective of a law student could lead to that conclusion." Unalarming because at leat a half are not depressed. Jesus.

"It's hard and stressful for a reason. LAW IS IMPORTANT TO OUR SOCIETY! We have to get it right."

Most of it isn't important. Society would get along just fine with much much less lawyering. But anyway, medicine is pretty damn important and med school doesn't do the same thing to students. Same for science training, etc. Legal education is so badly in need of reform it's ridiculous. Any other profession would have made massive changes by now, but somehow law just plods along. I mean, the first year design has been the same for how long? Well thank goodness that unlike every other form of education, law got it completely right the first time, eliminating the need for change.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: dft on November 24, 2005, 02:32:42 PM
interesting thread
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 25, 2005, 02:53:56 PM
I apologize for the tone of my last post. Too much coffee and law. d**mn I love coffee with my law.

It's unfortunate that so many law students and lawyers hate it so much. However, I point to a fundamentally different explanation than that the system itself is to blame. Americans all want to be the biggest, baddest, and best in life. All 300,000,000 or so of us. Traditionally that means you become a doctor or a lawyer. This has resulted in an influx of unqualified and unequiped people going into the field of law (and probably, god help us, medicine as well), which requires a rather unorthidox way of thinking. This has been fueled by the shift away from on-the-job lawyer training (which now only exists in California) and the ABA's accredidation of way too many law schools. 


Bottom line- there are too many depressed lawyers because there are too many lawyers. If our culture valued the skills of a plumber and payed them like lawyers, there would be too many d**mn plumbers, and most of them would be dissatisfied and depressed. After all, who wants to deal with stinky pipes?

Negotiation, problem-solving, and analytical reasoning are the filthy pipes of the law. This type of work is not for everyone, yet a disproportional amount of people take the plunge. This helps no one. Most of all, it doesn't help lawyers.

You say too many depressed lawyers. I say most lawyers are plumbers trapped in lawyers' bodies.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: family values on November 26, 2005, 03:03:56 PM
Quote
"I actually think these numbers are encouraging. Over half of law students and lawyers are NOT depressed or suicidal. Sounds fairly unalarming to me."

Are you crazy? Only the skewed perpective of a law student could lead to that conclusion." Unalarming because at leat a half are not depressed. Jesus.

Quote
"It's hard and stressful for a reason. LAW IS IMPORTANT TO OUR SOCIETY! We have to get it right."

Most of it isn't important. Society would get along just fine with much much less lawyering. But anyway, medicine is pretty d a m n important and med school doesn't do the same thing to students. Same for science training, etc. Legal education is so badly in need of reform it's ridiculous. Any other profession would have made massive changes by now, but somehow law just plods along. I mean, the first year design has been the same for how long? Well thank goodness that unlike every other form of education, law got it completely right the first time, eliminating the need for change.

Amen 19guy! jumboshrimps must have really gone crazy!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: bulletproof on November 26, 2005, 11:42:15 PM
I think I'm somewhere in the middle on this one.  On the one hand, I feel all the "depression" etc. is overblown and people need to get a grip.  I understand where it comes from, and about mid-october when the shine wore off law school I really understood.  But that is little excuse to give in to it.  You need to have some friends, have some beers from time to time, and keep yourself grounded.

On the other hand I absolutely believe that the pedagogy of law school is so completely screwed as to be next to unbelievable if you weren't seeing it yourself.  You spend an entire class mostly listening to classmates say nothing at all with a professor that usually gives no indication of what the hell is good info and what is bad.  The result: you figure it out yourself.  Law school, at least the 1L year of it, is esentially self-taught.  I have no doubt you could do just as well by reading primers and E&Es on each of the subjects and then just bouncing hypos off your classmates.  If you listen to most of your prof's you'll see they are saying a whole lotta nothing about the nuts and bolts of most of the subjects.  Those of you that have yet to take a test may be surprised to find out that taking notes of everything that came out of the prof's mouth was a complete waste of time. 

In any other subject, including med school, the profs actually attempt to teach you the skills needed to do well.  They teach them right there in class... by lecturing... by telling you things that you can write down and remember and then use to understand.  Not by making you read 12 pages of case to learn a one sentance rule.  Sure case briefing is important at first... but it quickly becomes a waste of time for any purpose other than being able to look smart when you get called on. 

The theory that it needs to be this way to keep all the tom, and dicks, etc, out of the field of law, I don't see why.  The GPA/LSAT hurdle narrows the field down and the school's pickiness does as well.  The people that get in after that, are you seeing a lot of them fail out??  Cuz I'm not.  Pretty much you get into law school and hang in there and you will graduate it.  It is not weeding people out, so there is no reason to think that if the classes actually tried to simply give you the information you need, that less qualified lawyers would be the result.  In fact, I'd argue the opposite would be. 

If you haven't ever read an Aspen Examples and Explanations book on one of the core 1L subjects, take a look.  Listen to the "lectures" on a given topic and then read the chapter from the book.  See if it doesn't make you wonder why they couldn't "have just said that".

Course this doesn't apply to every single prof... some are a little better at trying to teach.  But it is a pretty universal observation of the field.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ryanjm on November 27, 2005, 09:05:53 AM
I'm fine so far. No worries. Maybe the people having problems aren't able to adapt to having to work hard for perhaps the first time in their lives.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 27, 2005, 09:20:06 AM
"Dark side of law school," my ass. Take responsibility for your own emotions, or get the f*ck out. We're privileged to be here. Every one of us.

There's two ways you could take the study i guess. 1) Law school is mean and evil. We need to reform it to make it a nice fuzzy warm environment that everyone across america can enjoy and participate in free from the torment of stress about being skilled and able at one's profession, or 2) hey future law students - this stuff is very stressful; think twice before jumping in.

I think Jumboshrimps is right-on if people take the study to imply #1 above. However, #2 seems like a legitimate conclusion to take away from the study. Don't go to law school unless either a) you're a hardass who can stand up to the pressure, or b) you're a free spirit for whom such pressure never seems to affect you in the first place. Lots of people might *think* they are b), but they're not. "I don't care what grade i get" is usually code for "i want good grades but don't think i'm up to it so i pretend not to care".

So, just be aware, you're entering a pressure-cooker.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eloisa on November 27, 2005, 10:46:54 AM
Yes, law school is stressful.  And I don't think making it "warm and fuzzy" is the greatest idea.  After all, graduate and professional education is supposed to be difficult.

But compare law school to other professional schools -- say, med school.  We always hear that "med students have it just as rough."  I know some med students, and I can say without a doubt that they are just as busy, if not more so, as law students.  But by and large, they are not as depressed as law students. 

The question then is, what is the difference between law school and medical school?  I
 think a large part of it has to do with teaching style.  My medical student friends have lectures -- lectures! -- and labs.  They know what the professors expect of them.  We law students attend lectures but come out of it even more confused -- we aren't being taught, we are being asked to teach ourselves.  That, I think, is what leads to the greatest distress among law students.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 27, 2005, 10:57:23 AM
ALL important learning is done on one's own. The idea that people should be sat down and TOLD the material is radical, relatively new, and an utter failure, as is apparent from the current state of public schools.

I love the way law school works. I may be unusual in that I refuse to accept anything I haven't figured out on my own, but I think reading all of these cases to get a handful of rules has benefits that we don't even recognize. We are forced to take a "forest to trees" approach to the law. That makes sense. The law requires that you start in the correct forest when a client needs your services. If you were a master of details but had little feel for their context, you might advise your client on the wrong forest altogether. A lawsuit or transaction is a complex, comprehensive piece of art. I think we all benefit from being forced to keep an eye on where, exactly, we are within that context at any given time. Reading cases enforces this way of thinking.

You can't win the case or close the deal if you miss the boat, but you at least have a fighting chance if you just land in the correct boat on your head by mistake.

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: kmpnj on November 27, 2005, 12:04:04 PM
Not being a law student yet, I'd still like to offer my own, uninformed opinion on this fascinating subject.

I think that the reports of depression are a serious matter, but I wonder if the large amount of depressed people in law school and the legal profession is a result of more Americans, in general, being clinically depressed.  Turn on any channel on TV and you will see adds for Paxil and Zoloft and any number of anti-depressants.  In this empirical evidence, do they compare the rates of depression to American society as a whole?  Is it markedly different? Again, with the bombardment of advertisements for anti-depressants, I would tend to think that the legal field is but a microcosm of society as a whole.

I would also like to know the socio-economic background of those persons polled.  I would tend to think that white, upper and upper-middle class students would rate higher than those who were from poor backgrounds.  If you had a lifetime of dinner choices consisting of Ramen noodles and Chef Boyardee, I'm confident that you would not be depressed by something so trivial as whether a professor likes you or not.

ALso, what was the methodology of this study?  Were the people who were clinically depressed before Law School controlled for?  How many students were polled?  What schools were polled?  I would think that a school like Harvard or Yale would have more clinically depressed people than a working class Law School like Widener or Temple, because most of the students at the upper echelon schools, I would hypothesize, have had economic backgrounds which would allow them the luxury of self-indulgent emotions like depression.  Bottom line, people with money, I have found, have a lot more time to determine that they are depressed than kids who do not.

Just some food for thought.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 27, 2005, 12:24:35 PM
Interesting. I think you're right. depression is a "disease" of the haves. The have-nots don't have time for it. As to those drug commercials, I intend to sue every one of those drug-pushing megacompanies and the "doctors" who make up diseases and then overprescribe medications that strip people of their inborn abilities to deal with their own emotions. I think in the decades to come, we will come to see the short-sightedness of drugging our personalities into submission.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 27, 2005, 12:41:37 PM
My favorite drug commercial is the one for "social anxiety". It's a cartoon with some sad frowning face hopping around various social environments, always with a frown and never happy. Then, the cartoon shows the problem. You see, it's a "chemical imbalance". As proof, the cartoon shows some animated molecules passing back and forth across a dotted line, with too many molecules amassed on one side.

It's astounding that the drug companies can push an advertisement in which they 'prove' the purported effectiveness of their drugs with saturday morning cartoons. But frankly, i'm not up in arms about stopping them. As was stated, it seems like it's the privileged loafers of society that are having all these expensively medicated depression problems. So, I don't really care that they are being bilked by the drug companies. In fact, the more medicated zombies walking around the more the general quality of work in all fields is reduced, as well as drive, ambition, and creativity. That gives the sober among us an advantage.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 27, 2005, 12:51:37 PM
That's one way to look at it. Another way is to see the net productivity happiness of our culture suffer. I can only look out for numer one to the extent that number one doesn't look around and see a world full of zombies, I'm afraid. What bothers me about all this is that the solution is antithetical to my core libertarian disposition. I feel that drug companies need to be regulated, but just typing that made me a little sick.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 27, 2005, 01:57:09 PM
People who try to medicate away their emotional problems are precisely the sort of people I don't like and don't get along with anyway. They're also not the sort of people likely to be vibrant, driven, and creative in the first place. In a way, the drug companies are doing us a favor by allowing these people to voluntarily self-select themselves onto the short-bus of medicated zombies. Creative, driven, ambitious, intelligent people do not hand over their mental destiny to a bottle of pills. That is not to say that they don't have mental/emotional problems, but they work out their problems with family, friends, conversations with a professional psychologist, or other introspective techniques (a walk alone in the woods, whatever) that take hard work and dedication to unravel and correct the underlying psychological problems. The mentally lazy jump for the magical solution of a bottle of pills. So, in my view, it's not much of a loss to either society as a whole or me personally. It's a case of a sinister (or arrogantly deluded) group of drug companies taking advantage of grotesquely lazy people who are too fearful to engage in genuine introspection. I just don't care much when bad people take advantage of lazy cowards.

That's one way to look at it. Another way is to see the net productivity happiness of our culture suffer. I can only look out for numer one to the extent that number one doesn't look around and see a world full of zombies, I'm afraid. What bothers me about all this is that the solution is antithetical to my core libertarian disposition. I feel that drug companies need to be regulated, but just typing that made me a little sick.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 27, 2005, 02:16:43 PM
Yes, but there is a problem when the medical community is not only supportive of the trend, but directly profiting from it in unprecedented dollar amounts. Add to this the tradition in our culture of unquestioning trust of medical providers with our health, and you get a conflict of interest which the vicims themselves willingly feed. Add to THAT the fact that all drugs are addictive, and you've got a society of addicts who's only barometer of caution comes from the drug dealers themselves, who are completely indistinguishable from the people delivering babies and setting broken bones.

I'd like to say "hands-off" and just let this thing run its course so that it comes to a head and we see the folly of it all, but I'm not sure there will be much of a culture left to save at that point. Therefore, I choose to fight this battle.

Doctors, patients, and the stock market desperately need these drugs. Only common sense gives us pause. But common sense and a dollar won't buy you a cup of coffe these days. God help us, but I think the law must unleash its wicked, reaching hand here.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 27, 2005, 03:20:28 PM
Plenty of people who truly need help with their mental and emotional problems rely on medication to help them.  It's not the best way to solve the problem and drug companies are surely in it for selfish reasons, but for you to call everyone who relies on medication lazy or whatever just goes to show that you have a very weak grip on the bigger picture. 

Sandwiched between the ad hominem statements was an actual point. You seem to agree medication isn't the best solution. I'm not sure what your method is to promote a better, healthier choice. My strategy - afford no comfort or solace to people who choose medication to solve their problems rather than the coping methods humans have naturally evolved over centuries of life. I don't condone taking the pills away from those who choose to medicate away their emotional/psychological problems, but I do condone an honest recognition that such people have chosen to medicate themselves rather than engage in the difficult self-introspection necessary to confront the underlying psychological and emotional problems causing the issue in the first place. I think any honest appraisal would recognize the second approach as more courageous.

But functionally, I pose no contrary opinion to your view. I have no problem with the legal status of the current situation. But apparently, you feel that I must not only afford others the legal right to medicate their emotional problems, but I should also tell them they're peachy-keen for doing so and how wonderful it is they've chosen a self-medicated course of action (or, more appropriately, inaction). I decline to do so.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: law is an ass on November 27, 2005, 06:38:24 PM
People who try to medicate away their emotional problems are precisely the sort of people I don't like and don't get along with anyway. They're also not the sort of people likely to be vibrant, driven, and creative in the first place. In a way, the drug companies are doing us a favor by allowing these people to voluntarily self-select themselves onto the short-bus of medicated zombies. Creative, driven, ambitious, intelligent people do not hand over their mental destiny to a bottle of pills. That is not to say that they don't have mental/emotional problems, but they work out their problems with family, friends, conversations with a professional psychologist, or other introspective techniques (a walk alone in the woods, whatever) that take hard work and dedication to unravel and correct the underlying psychological problems. The mentally lazy jump for the magical solution of a bottle of pills. So, in my view, it's not much of a loss to either society as a whole or me personally. It's a case of a sinister (or arrogantly deluded) group of drug companies taking advantage of grotesquely lazy people who are too fearful to engage in genuine introspection. I just don't care much when bad people take advantage of lazy cowards.



I guess being "creative" and "ambitious" is more like a synonym for being an arrogant prick in your case.

Plenty of people who truly need help with their mental and emotional problems rely on medication to help them.  It's not the best way to solve the problem and drug companies are surely in it for selfish reasons, but for you to call everyone who relies on medication lazy or whatever just goes to show that you have a very weak grip on the bigger picture. 

Of course, this is all funny coming from the "creative" white guy who tried to get URM status to help him get into Michigan with a 162 LSAT.

hahaha! You hit the nail right on the head!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eray01 on November 27, 2005, 07:13:20 PM
People who try to medicate away their emotional problems are precisely the sort of people I don't like and don't get along with anyway. They're also not the sort of people likely to be vibrant, driven, and creative in the first place. In a way, the drug companies are doing us a favor by allowing these people to voluntarily self-select themselves onto the short-bus of medicated zombies. Creative, driven, ambitious, intelligent people do not hand over their mental destiny to a bottle of pills. That is not to say that they don't have mental/emotional problems, but they work out their problems with family, friends, conversations with a professional psychologist, or other introspective techniques (a walk alone in the woods, whatever) that take hard work and dedication to unravel and correct the underlying psychological problems. The mentally lazy jump for the magical solution of a bottle of pills. So, in my view, it's not much of a loss to either society as a whole or me personally. It's a case of a sinister (or arrogantly deluded) group of drug companies taking advantage of grotesquely lazy people who are too fearful to engage in genuine introspection. I just don't care much when bad people take advantage of lazy cowards.

That's one way to look at it. Another way is to see the net productivity happiness of our culture suffer. I can only look out for numer one to the extent that number one doesn't look around and see a world full of zombies, I'm afraid. What bothers me about all this is that the solution is antithetical to my core libertarian disposition. I feel that drug companies need to be regulated, but just typing that made me a little sick.

Do you not believe there are people who may have mental/emotional issues that are a result of a medical disorder within the brain? Those types of disorders can only be treated with medicine combined with therapy. I agree there are alot of people who should be seeking help elsewhere, but abuse medication and are taken adavantage of by the pharmaceutical industry. However, there are some people who must be medicated because they suffer from bona fide pyschiatric disorders. And, I'm not talking about the well known disorders like schizophrenia. There are alot of more subtle disorders that are incredibly destructive to an individual's life and relationships that can only be dealt with effectively through a combination of medicine and the "introspective techniques" you speak of. Many people lead apparently functional lives, yet they are hamstrung by unresolved psychiatric issues. It's sad that many of them may never find relief because they're afraid it would be considered weak if they resorted to chemical assistance. Let's face it. Our emotions, personalities, responses to life, and all of the other things that animate us on an intellectual and social level are only a product of the chemical soup inside our skulls. The brain is an organ as much as any other organ. Sometimes it breaks, and sometimes (not all the time) medicine can fix it.

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 27, 2005, 07:22:03 PM

Do you not believe there are people who may have mental/emotional issues that are a result of a medical disorder within the brain?

Of course there are. Irrelevent.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 27, 2005, 07:56:00 PM
Believe me, you can't have an informed opinion until mental illness starts stealing from you or someone you love.

Been there. Watched a friend slowly decay into a zombie from years of arrogant psychiatrists prescribing prozac and lithium. After a decade on the stuff, he's beyond hope and utterly lost. His psychiatrists don't care. He's rich, pays his bills, and is easy to deal with. They don't have to dredge up any of the awful stuff involving his relationship with his father and his brother. That's too burdensome. Much easier to fill a monthly prozac/lithium prescription. So, my loathing of psychiatry and psycho-meds is founded on actual experience with a close friend.

I honestly hope that in the unlikely event there comes a time in that child's life when your love and care may not help them with what might be an unsolveable (SP?) mental problem...you aren't one of those A-hole Dads that tells them to, "rub a little dirt on it and walk it off."  

I don't believe in your premise. There are no unsolvable mental problems, or at least they exist in such a low frequency as to not even deserve much comment outside niche medical journals. What I will do as a father is spend an enormous amount of time with my child to help him figure out any problems he's having and help him work through them. If that means quitting a high-paying law job to take a more menial job to spend time with my child, then so be it. Rather than your suggestion, the real A-hole dad is the one who just gets his problem child hooked up on Ritalin b/c a few quick tosses of the baseball in the back yard didn't solve the problem and he's too busy with work to spend any more time with his child trying to figure out what's going on.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eloisa on November 27, 2005, 08:15:39 PM
I don't believe in your premise. There are no unsolvable mental problems, or at least they exist in such a low frequency as to not even deserve much comment outside niche medical journals. What I will do as a father is spend an enormous amount of time with my child to help him figure out any problems he's having and help him work through them. ...

If you truly believe that there are no unsolvable mental problems, try dealing with a relative who has acute, childhood-onset, paranoid schizophrenia.  His parents have tried everything -- individual counseling, family counseling, bailing him out of jail repeatedly, "tough love," a military-type school, religion -- and nothing has solved the problem.  This isn't a case (as you might suggest) where the family wants him on medication because they're too lazy to deal with the problem.  This is a case in which all the love and effort in the world is just not going to solve the underlying problem.  The family has spent 12 years trying to solve the problem with their love, but it isn't happening.

Do Americans overmedicate?  Sure, I'll concede that.  But there are numerous Americans (not just a handful, as you imply) suffering from severe mental illness, illness which cannot be remedied simply by a dad taking more time to spend with his children.  All fathers should spend time with their children, but this won't solve all psychiatric problems.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eray01 on November 27, 2005, 08:48:26 PM

Do you not believe there are people who may have mental/emotional issues that are a result of a medical disorder within the brain?

Of course there are. Irrelevent.

How's that question irrelevant to a discussion of the utility and overuse of pyschiatric medication. As I said in my post, and perhaps I should've been more clear, I'm not talking about schizophrenia. There is no question schizophrenia is a result of a medical disorder within the brain. I'm talking about some forms of depression people suffer. I think it's important for people to understand there's depression, and then there's depression. There's the unmotivated bad attitude kind of depression some people suffer from. Usually those people need a good kick in the ass. Then there's the depression that manifests itself in a person who has previously been a highly motivated achiever. Someone who has healthy social relationships, a bright future, and a supportive network of people around them. Generally this person's life is pretty good and as normal as normal can be. But, when they reach their early twenties they notice a shift taking place. This person can't figure out what's wrong but clearly something is. They still continue to function at the same level as before for a period of time, but they have cycles of normality followed by depression. Over time the cycles of depression get deeper and longer. They lose friends, jobs, opportunities. Everyone is frustrated, especially the sufferer, because no matter how hard they try they can't break out of this rut they're in. This previously highly motivated achiever now can't muster the will to get out of bed everyday and participate in life. Many people suffer from this scenario, and alot of them end up committing suicide.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eray01 on November 28, 2005, 08:00:05 AM
The scenario I laid out isn't really an extreme. That's pretty much a typical scenario of a legitimate depression sufferer. That's how it goes for alot of people with depression.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ChlorasepticRelief on November 28, 2005, 09:43:33 AM
There are unsolvable mental disorders, disorders that have to be voluntarily dealt with medicinally. An ex of mine was having hallucinations, depression, and who knows what else... she was seriously f'd up... she saw demons and sh*t :o Maybe the concept of life with no me was that bad? ;D

Now, I will agree that there is a problem with overmedicating the public, but some issues have to be dealt with; and why spend years convincing yourself that the demons you see are fake when you can just take a pill and let it end? Just because one route is harder doesn't make it noble. Is it more noble to have a tiger chase you to the store than it is to just get in your car and drive there? Does that make the latter option the "lazy" option?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eray01 on November 28, 2005, 11:16:44 AM
My mistake. Sorry.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 28, 2005, 01:19:29 PM
Certainly there are egregious situations in which meds may be appropriate. I believe, however, that such situations are so infrequent that pointing to them as a shining lighthouse in the dark is dishonest because it begins to lower the bar and promote medication where it should not occur.

Here's EXACTLY the kind of example that i'm talking about, where we are supportive to the self-medicated person which then promotes further unnecessary medication:

Brooke Shields had some post-partum depression problems. She got medicated. Everyone lauded (before the Tom Cruise thing) how "brave" she was for coming out and admitting her problem and seeking help, i.e. medicated help. Having just gone through child-birth with my wife, and having been the recipient of a "high-needs" baby (i.e. cries WAY more than normal babies, up all the time, not sleeping through the night, long, fitful crying bouts all day long, etc. etc.), I am well aware of the toll this takes on the mother. Mom is simultaneously conflicted with feelings of love for the baby, but also severe frustration that makes her want to throw the baby out the window. This contradiction kinda makes mom go crazy, and she gets very depressed. It happened to my wife.

Now look back at Brooke Shields. Because we all praised her for getting medicated, the lesson to the average person having the kind of problem I describe above is "get mom hooked up on post-partum depression drugs". That message is an absolute SIN and Brooke Shields is partly to blame for promoting such a message. The more healthy thing to do, what my wife and i did, was talk about her depression, talk about her conflicting feelings of love and hate for the baby, talk about the rising frustration that builds up throughout the day with a baby that simply cannot be consoled and that will not stop crying. But people don't want to do this because it's hard work and is confessional in nature. It forces you to confront a scary truth - on some subconscious level I really do hate my baby. THAT is the frightening truth lying at the core of a lot of post-partum depression issues. But no mother, and no father, wants to take on the difficult introspective task of admitting this ghastly truth and dealing with it honestly. It's much easier to avoid this hard work (what i call 'lazy') and to be fearful of confronting this hard truth (what i call 'cowardly') and just deny all responsibility by calling it a chemical imbalance.

It is an absolute fraud to characterize this situation as a "chemical imbalance". Anyone who's been through it can clearly see that the underpinnings of mom's depression in cases like this (like the one i went through w/ my wife and son) are psychological in nature, are caused by the extreme pressures of highly frustrating circumstances involving deep emotions of simultaneous love and hate for one's newborn. To delude oneself into believing this is merely a "chemical imbalance" is to ignore the true underlying problem, and to simply paint a happy face on top of an underlying volcano waiting to explode at some point in the future.

Are there SOME moms SOMEWHERE with situations SO extreme as to require medication? Sure. But when we praise people like Brooke Shields for medicating her psychological problems then we encourage others NOT to face the underlying psychological issues, and instead just whitewash the issue away with drugs. That is wrong on so many levels.

It would be interesting to go around and around with this... Unfortunately, we end up in a battle of extremes and I'm also not nearly prepped for class!  Most people would agree we toss too many pills around and often medicate when its not necessary.  As a former elementary school teacher, I'm well aware of parents who can't be inconvenienced by an energetic and high energy child.  The other side of the coin is a set of parents (one of whom chose to stay at home and aid in the child's classroom during all school hours) doing EVERYTHING at their disposal to help their child.  They barely sleep, neighbors won't let their kids play at their house, the child has a bad rep at school, and they spend 24 hours a day trying to out think a child that WILL eventually hurt someone or something.  Again, until it is your home/your child...and you try for years as you watch your friendless wounded child develop greater emotional complications because they just can't slow down enough to put some forethought into their actions... saying things like, "walk in the woods" and "go play so more catch"....honestly makes you part of the problem.  People do have genetic tendencies, do they all need pills?  Of course not.  Tex also made reference to not being associated with these people because of their life attitudes (I believe lazy or something to that effect), NEWSFLASH there are people around you who value your friendship, think you are a smart guy, and know how you feel about mental illness... they just hide their problems/scrips from you. 

I DON'T ADVOCATE PEOPLE RUNNING TO THE DOC WHEN THEIR LIFE IS NOT PERFECT.  IF THE CHOICE IS BEING MISERABLE, HURTING THEMSELVES, AND OTHERS... let them have the meds.  In the mean time, if this is really an "issue" and you want to truly help, use your d**mn T-14 degrees to separate the doctors from the drug companies.  Get the bean counters at the HMOS to stop advocating meds instead of more expensive treatment.  Truth is until it happens to most people, they won't do a thing.  There is no money in it....why help the lazy anyway?




Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 28, 2005, 03:26:51 PM
Bradzwest - here's the problem. Everyone agrees with the platitudes that "Americans are too medicated" and "Americans jump to quick fix solutions in the form of pills and ignore the underlying problems". Sure, everyone agrees with these easy-to-rattle-off truisms in the abstract. The problem is that every time an actual example of self-medication ever arises either in the media or in personal conversations, everyone ALWAYS says "oh, that's different, this guy/gal REALLY does need the drugs". It's as if we recognize the general problem but are completely unwilling to actually point to any example offenders.

That's where I part company with those mouthing the platitudes. I'm willing to actually point to specific people (e.g Brooke Shields), specific examples, and condemn them as lazy & cowardly (i use those terms technically as described above b/c there do not seem to be non-pejorative substitutes) examples of self-medicated people escaping the underlying psychological truth. What I object to is the fact that we all agree to the platitudes you've mentioned, but simultaneously decry as taboo any attempt to hold actual individuals accountable for their choice to self-medicate. Without license to do the latter, the platitudes are just that - meaningless phrases we all mouth in unison.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Jumboshrimps on November 28, 2005, 04:32:55 PM
separate the doctors from the drug companies. 


Herein lies the devil of it all, at least for the time being. But also, I see no reason why TV commercials for prescription drugs should be tollerated. If we accept that drugs are powerful, that they all have side effects, and that people must see a doctor to get a prescription, these ads are dangerous. They give unprecedented power to companies that have both the government and doctors on their side. Which side does that leave patients on? Why, the side of a consumer, of course. When, exactly, did "consumer" become synonymous with "patient?" What are the consequences?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 28, 2005, 06:09:54 PM
I'll admit, part of what makes people hostile to me is that, basically, i'm a misanthrope. Don't have a lot of faith in people once more than 3 or 4 of them congregate together.

I know that right now, it might sound like SciFi craziness, but i'm convinced that we're headed toward a future resembling a cross between Brave New World and Gattica - a world where the beauty of the individual human spirit fighting valiantly against the slings and arrows of life's misfortunes is replaced with a new goal in which technology and innovation are no longer tools for emblazoned demonstrations of the human spirit, but become ends in themselves. People will be medicated because it's more efficient. The next generation is genetically engineered because we can. In this world, the insane person becomes the one who still clings to that flame of individual human spirit, the one who relinquishes society's least common denominator of blue-pill happy efficiency and instead chooses a sober life of mistakes, creativity, learning, self direction, and yes - very possibly failure and self destruction. To save us from ourselves, we will destroy ourselves by ceasing to be human.

Anyway, that's my underlying manifesto which is the predominant cause of my hostility toward technology worshippers like psychiatrists, versus introspective mind-worshippers like psychologists.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: buck on November 29, 2005, 10:14:01 PM
Wow, BigTex, it's really impressive how you can take your limited experience with your wife's post-partum depression and assume that what was true for her is true for everyone else.  That kind of massive, unwarranted generalization from your own limited experience seems pretty irresponsible, especially for someone who's going to be a lawyer one day.  Your presumption that what worked for your wife must, by definition, work for everyone, and that if it doesn't then they are by definition lazy, is ridiculous.  Being judgmental and self-righteous is pretty bad on its own, but add being deeply and unapologetically ignorant to the mix and you've got a real loser on your hands.  Sorry about that.  But at some point, people like you tend to realize - often painfully - that they don't have everything all figured out after all.

Oh, and for the people ruminating on how clinical depression is a "luxury for the upper classes" or whatever that crap was, look up some statistics.  Depression is most common by far in lower socioeconomic groups.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on November 30, 2005, 04:11:45 PM
Wow, BigTex, it's really impressive how you can take your limited experience with your wife's post-partum depression and assume that what was true for her is true for everyone else.  That kind of massive, unwarranted generalization from your own limited experience seems pretty irresponsible, especially for someone who's going to be a lawyer one day. 

Yeah, kinda like how all of the media assumed that post-partum drugs are the right thing for anyone having severe post-pregnancy depression after Brooke Shields came out w/ her personal story of drugged salvation.

If you've read my posts with any fairness, you'll see that my point of contention is not that there are some subset of people legitimately using drugs, but that getting medicated is now viewed as the default/normal response to mental problems. While this latter statement is generally agreed to in the abstract, i've also pointed out that there is general condemnation if anyone actually applies this generally agreed-to truism to any particular case. As long as you attack me for things i'm not saying it just reinforces my belief that the problem is as deep and pervasive as i've described. Or perhaps you too agree with the general principle (americans are too medicated) and yet still cling to the taboo about actually calling anyone on it?
Title: Humanizing Law School
Post by: IQT on December 20, 2005, 02:09:35 AM
Some professors are helping their students march through law school with their values and self-esteem intact—en route to becoming happier lawyers

by Jane Easter Bahls

If you're a typical law student, you may be feeling depressed and disconnected from what you used to believe. But don't take it personally, and don't despair even further. Research shows you're far from alone, and there are simple things you and your professors can do about it.

That's the gist of the gospel from a small but energetic movement within legal academia to "humanize" the law school experience. Adherents are not only documenting a high degree of depression among law students and lawyers. They're also working to alleviate it by encouraging students to get in touch with their core values.

Studies finding unusually high levels of distress among law students and lawyers lend evidence to the reformers' efforts. Research by psychologist Andrew Benjamin, for instance, showed that significant numbers of law students at the University of Arizona were psychologically healthy when they arrived, but within the first year developed major psychological distress that remained through law school and into the graduates' careers. Anxiety, hostility, and depression ran eight to 15 times higher than in the general population.

Even though that study was conducted in 1986, many within the humanization movement consider it valid based on the soundness of the research, similar findings among lawyers, and anecdotal and empirical evidence from today's students.

Numerous studies have shown that lawyers, however prosperous they may be, are a relatively unhappy lot. For example, a 1995 study by psychologist Connie Beck and her colleagues found that 20 percent to 35 percent of the lawyers studied reported symptoms associated with being clinically distressed—at a level found in only about 2 percent of the general population.

A recent empirical study by Florida State University law professor Lawrence Krieger and University of Missouri-Columbia psychology professor Kennon Sheldon, published as a summary in the March/June 2002 Journal of Legal Education, measured students’ motivations, values, and "subjective well-being," a term that emcompasses levels of good and bad moods and life satifaction.

Law students in the study began with higher subjective well-being than comparison samples of undergraduates and other new professional students, but by the end of their first year that had plummeted. Meanwhile, the law students became more motivated by externals—grades, appearances, money—and less by intrinsic values such as personal growth and contribution to the community.

Not that making money and being respected is inherently bad, Krieger says. The point, he emphasizes, is one that psychological research backs up: People whose primary motivation is money tend to be unhappy, while people who are motivated by goals such as helping others or making a difference tend to be happy. In Krieger and Sheldon’s study, many who started law school in hopes of serving the public had given up their dream in favor of money and prestige.

"Perhaps ironically," Krieger says, "research shows that the general distress and depression among law students is not mitigated by high grades, nor is dissatisfaction among lawyers mitigated by high salaries."

Clearly, something’s wrong. "Lawyers tend to ignore their inner lives," says journalist Steven Keeva, an assistant managing editor at the ABA Journal and author of Transforming Practices: Finding Joy and Satisfaction in the Legal Life (Contemporary Books, 1999). "They are consummate doers, trying to control things, win, take care of things."
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: IQT on December 20, 2005, 02:10:37 AM
One-sided thinking

Again, that's not bad in itself, but Keeva found through dozens of interviews that lawyers tend to be psychologically one-sided—and that they became that way soon after starting law school. He explains that the primary thrust of legal education—teaching students how to think like a lawyer—is so pervasive that students and lawyers alike find themselves analyzing everything in their lives, at the expense of relationships, values, and spirituality. And when they feel the loss of things they used to hold dear, they typically keep their feelings bottled up. "There's a code of silence in the profession," Keeva says. "There's this fear of looking soft."

Those who pay attention to these issues say most law professors and administrators appear to be ignoring the problems. Others are skeptical of the supporting studies or find the whole effort flaky.

But the movement to humanize legal education—a community of law professors scattered across the nation—has been studying these issues, publishing articles on the topic, and helping students regain some perspective. They say you don't have to wait for major changes in legal education. Thinking about values and priorities now—and talking about them with other students—can help you maintain your equilibrium in law school and throughout your career.

The movement's linchpin is Krieger, clinical professor and director of externships at Florida State University College of Law. Having taught stress management both before and after becoming a lawyer, Krieger noticed how tense his law students were. "I realized these people were very insecure," he recalls.

Krieger related their feelings to psychologist Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs: how people must meet the basic needs for survival, security, belonging, and respect before they move toward contentment. But from the earliest days of law school, he says, students get the message that they must make top grades, must perform flawlessly in class, and must compete with other students. In effect, law students have to worry about survival, security, and whether they really belong. Many panic.

"I was very aware of the emotional health problems of lawyers," Krieger says. "How much of that starts in law school? How much of it could we head off if we taught them healthy perspectives?"

He began teaching students in his classes about Maslow’s hierarchy and getting them to talk about their needs and fears. Nearly all of them defined success in law school as being in the top 10 percent, which means that 90 percent are set up for failure.

"I was a litigator for a long time, and I never had a judge ask me what my class rank was," Krieger says. "Ninety percent of our students have a legal job within six months of graduating—but our students don;t know that."

Krieger reminds students that only a tenth of them can be in the top 10 percent, but nearly all will survive law school and get decent jobs. Top students get first crack at big-firm interviews—but is that worth sacrificing your health and relationships for three years? Many of his students report that it helped tremendously just to put it all in perspective.

Exchanging ideas and support

Krieger now manages a listserv for about 230 law professors and others interested in these issues, to exchange ideas and mutual support. One member is Daisy Hurst Floyd, a professor at Texas Tech University School of Law. Floyd engaged students in a Carnegie Foundation project on professional identity, where students in her seminars read and discussed readings, listened to visiting lawyers, wrote reflective essays, and participated in a web-based discussion board.

Floyd and her students agreed that law school does an excellent job of teaching students to think like lawyers. However, the students also reported competition among students so intense that many classrooms were actively hostile. Those who couldn’t attain the prizes of top grades and law review suffered feelings of failure and inadequacy.

"Students were talking to each other about feelings of isolation," Floyd says. "They'd felt they couldn’t talk about it before." She notes that it's natural to have some doubts about a position with as much responsibility as being a lawyer, "but we were sending signals that if you feel doubt, maybe you’re not cut out for it."

While the practice of law is about relationships, Floyd explains, legal education devalues relationships and other emotional matters. "It is not just that we fail to teach students about relationship skills," she says. "Legal education actually diminishes or eliminates the ability to form and sustain relationships that students possess when they begin law school."

Floyd observes that most students enter law school with a clear sense of purpose and a passion to do something important, but they soon find that their passion isn't even addressed. Appellate cases, the staple of first-year study, focus far more on legal issues than on the people involved. The idea that lawyers help clients—real people with real problems—drops off the radar screen.

"Students think they were wrong about what law is all about," she says. "They think their initial vision was naive, so they have to give it up." That leads to a deep sense of loss and a numbing resignation to the system.

A related movement called "therapeutic jurisprudence" is addressing those issues by seeking to make people's experience with the legal system supportive and healing rather than traumatic and stressful, as it often is. Led by law professors David Wexler of the University of Puerto Rico and Bruce Winick of the University of Miami, proponents focus on cooperation, communication, and being sensitive to a client's personal issues.

"If it weren't for David Wexler, I would have been totally discouraged and depressed," says Puerto Rico third-year law student Adi Martinez, who finds legal analysis mechanical and dull. "Therapeutic jurisprudence is about talking to the client, not just doing whatever the client wants." That perspective, she says, has helped her keep her chin up in more traditional classes.

Floyd contends that the best way to help students is to give them permission and opportunities to engage in two activities generally devalued in law school: reflection and connection. Writing reflectively helps them understand why they've experienced law school the way they have. Connecting with other students on an emotional level can be a relief, as students discover they're not alone in their feelings. So can connecting with lawyers who've achieved balance and found meaning in their lives.

Just ask Richard Chapman, newly graduated from American University's Washington College of Law. "Law school is a very lonely process," he says. "Even though you’re around people all the time, you don’t get in touch." In an externship class with professor Marlena Valdez, another listserv member, Chapman read and discussed articles on how being a lawyer fits into your spiritual being. "Her class really made me think about why I was going to be a lawyer," he says. "We all felt we were detached from people, and appreciated being able to get in touch."

Is all this too touchy-feely for legal education? Some critics think so. Professor Barbara Glessner Fines of the University of Missouri-Kansas City reports that some faculty members equate humanizing legal education with lowering standards. "If you talk about lowering expectations, they say you're coddling into the profession people who aren't cut out for it," she says. "They say, 'If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen.' But why can't you put a fan in the kitchen?"
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: IQT on December 20, 2005, 02:14:31 AM
"The walking wounded"

Even schools that attract the brightest legal minds in the nation could use a fan in the kitchen. A student essay in the Harvard Law Review in 1998 reported that by the second year, "a surprising number of Harvard Law students resemble 'the walking wounded': demoralized, dispirited, and profoundly disengaged from the law school experience. What's more, by third year, a disturbingly high number of students come to convey a strong sense of impotence and little inclination or enthusiasm for meeting the world's challenges head on."

Krieger assigns the essay (Making Docile Lawyers: An Essay on the Pacification of Law Students) to his students to read. He estimates that more than 90 percent indicate their experience is similar.

There's hope, even at Harvard. Professor Todd Rakoff, dean of Harvard's J.D. program, reports that the school's emotional culture is changing. During the past 30 years, he notes, the student body has become more attuned to the emotional side of the classroom. That calls for a different approach to teaching.

"The older-school professors believed that first year should be like boot camp— tough as nails, and professors should never be nice to students," he says. "Harvard has been making efforts to move away from that." Legal education must be rigorous, he says, but it's really important to look at the psychodynamics of the classroom.

Outright resistance to the humanizing movement isn't its biggest challenge. Krieger contends that the larger challenge is institutional denial—faculties and deans not even acknowledging that there's a problem, despite the growing body of empirical and anecdotal evidence. "The problem is no one is reading the articles," Krieger says in frustration. He says there's little evidence that more than a few law professors are aware of the problems he's addressing.

More will soon. The Association of American Law Schools Section for Student Services has scheduled a major program at the association's annual meeting in January on depression and distress among law students and what to do about it. Deans of students from across the country will be discussing these issues and seeking solutions.

What are the solutions? Even those most familiar with the problems don't have it all worked out; many are still grappling with possible causes. Krieger makes three suggestions for institutional change.

One is for law schools to reconsider the practice of making students work exceptionally hard. "Persistently long hours of high-demand work obviously drains personal resources," he says. The endless hours of nothing but legal study displace other things people need to be doing to remain psychologically healthy.

A second is to stop communicating to students that they're only succeeding if they rank in the top 10 percent, that failing to do so jeopardizes their future employment, and that personal character, values, and ideals are now largely irrelevant. "One could hardly design by intention a more effective belief system for eroding self-esteem," he says.

Third, he contends that schools should back away from the mandatory or "strongly suggested" grade curve that must include a certain percentage of D’s. Under this system, no matter how narrow the spread between the top exam and the bottom one, those on the bottom must be D's. That further demoralizes students for no good reason, he says.

Whether or not they're likely to see institutional change, certain law professors are helping students examine these issues in and out of class. For instance, professor Laurie Morin, who teaches professional responsibility at the University of the District of Columbia law school, has students write for five minutes at the beginning of every class, reflecting on what they're learning and how it relates with their own beliefs. Then they talk about it. Students are initially skeptical, she says, because they're being asked to deal with the personal values that law school tries to drum out of them. Once they get beyond that, she says, "They get so excited. No one else asks them about what they're feeling."

Morin advises law students to do this on their own, whether or not a professor requires it. "Remember why you went to law school in the first place," she says. "Write it down. Ask yourself every day how what you’re doing is related to that reason."

Florida State law graduate Jeff Schumm, a former student of Krieger’s who is now working for the Florida attorney general, advises law students to maintain as much balance as possible in their lives. "If that means keeping up with a hobby, working out, or spending time with your family—try to allocate a priority to these things. It will help you maintain a healthy perspective on things, and probably, over the long run, improve your performance in law school."

Contributing editor Jane Easter Bahls is a freelance writer in Bexley, Ohio.

Words to the Wise

Becoming distressed and depressed doesn't have to be part of your law school experience. Here are some words of advice from those who've been there:

Stick to your plan. "Law school is a very personal experience," says Cheree Simpson, a third-year student at American University College of Law who discussed these issues in an externship class. "As a student, develop your own plan of what you want to achieve in law school, and throughout your career, and follow through with those plans."

Stay balanced. "Always take time for yourself, even when you feel as if you have no time," Simpson says. "Once you implement balance into your schedule, you will see that it will be beneficial to your well-being and your career."

Avoid negativism. Jeff Schumm, a 2000 graduate of Florida State University College of Law, notes that some students are constantly expressing negative opinions of the school, the teachers, or legal education in general. "To assist in avoiding this trap, embrace the opportunities available at school and get enthusiastically involved," he says. "This will link you with other positive thinkers."

Stay connected. "Talk to others about these issues and, mutually, try to help keep others positive," Schumm says.

Don't panic. It can be intimidating to be surrounded by so many bright people, feeling you have to compete. "Remember you will be fine," says professor Larry Krieger of Florida State University. "Only 10 percent can be in the top 10 percent of the class, but the other 90 percent can be just as happy and successful, or more so."

Keep grades in perspective. "You can be a C student and be respected by every judge in the county," Krieger adds. He explains that getting top grades only means you get interviewed first by some of the big-money law firms—perhaps a nice objective to shoot for, but don't let it become a desperate need.

Hang on to your values. "If you came here to help people and make a difference, stick with that and you’ll be happy," Krieger says. Too often, he says, law students let themselves become motivated primarily by money and appearance. Research shows that pursuit of such externals doesn't lead to true happiness. "If you give up your values," he says, "you'll be unhappy."

http://www.abanet.org/lsd/stulawyer/nov02/bahls.html
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: nagainagainagain on December 21, 2005, 02:27:28 AM
Quote
"Perhaps ironically," Krieger says, "research shows that the general distress and depression among law students is not mitigated by high grades, nor is dissatisfaction among lawyers mitigated by high salaries."

Obviously! I mean, people do not want to become lawyers for the big bucks!

Quote
[...] He explains that the primary thrust of legal education — teaching students how to think like a lawyer — is so pervasive that students and lawyers alike find themselves analyzing everything in their lives, at the expense of relationships, values, and spirituality.

Althou I think I understand what the author means here, anyone's interpretation would be appreciated ;)

Quote
And when they feel the loss of things they used to hold dear, they typically keep their feelings bottled up. "There's a code of silence in the profession," Keeva says. "There's this fear of looking soft.

That fear is very real and I can already see so many students at my school opening up once I throw some "forbidden" word/idea ... it breaks my heart to see so many of my fellow students being desperately insecure and @ # ! * e d - u p by the whole law school experience!

Quote
While the practice of law is about relationships, Floyd explains, legal education devalues relationships and other emotional matters. "It is not just that we fail to teach students about relationship skills," she says. "Legal education actually diminishes or eliminates the ability to form and sustain relationships that students possess when they begin law school."

I am not surprised by this -- do they not say that the typical law student is a loser who has no life?!

Quote
The idea that lawyers help clients — real people with real problems — drops off the radar screen.

I don't know about others, but when I started law school I did not think law/lawyering was about helping clients.

Quote
Professor Barbara Glessner Fines of the University of Missouri-Kansas City reports that some faculty members equate humanizing legal education with lowering standards. "If you talk about lowering expectations, they say you're coddling into the profession people who aren't cut out for it," she says. "They say, 'If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen.' But why can't you put a fan in the kitchen?"

I am not that sure about this fan thing! I mean, why not destroy the kitchen and eliminate for good the heat it produces?!

Quote
Even schools that attract the brightest legal minds in the nation could use a fan in the kitchen. A student essay in the Harvard Law Review in 1998 reported that by the second year, "a surprising number of Harvard Law students resemble 'the walking wounded': demoralized, dispirited, and profoundly disengaged from the law school experience. What's more, by third year, a disturbingly high number of students come to convey a strong sense of impotence and little inclination or enthusiasm for meeting the world's challenges head on." [...] "Students think they were wrong about what law is all about," she says. "They think their initial vision was naive, so they have to give it up." That leads to a deep sense of loss and a numbing resignation to the system.

Well, I guess that's the kind of obedient puppy that's needed as cook for that kitchen to function!

Quote
"The older-school professors believed that first year should be like boot camp — tough as nails, and professors should never be nice to students," he says.

I say make the first year of law school absolutely horrendous -- I mean, you've got these students who'll become lawyers one day with some of them becoming the sort of state actors who will not hesitate to kill, cage, and impoverish their fellow citizens on what are deemed institutionally appropriate occasions ... How can you afford to treat 'em nicely?!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: yournightmare on December 21, 2005, 07:18:57 PM
Quote
This involves close inspection of words and writing to look for defects in an adversary's position or which may create future problems for a client. It is fundamentally negative, critical, pessimistic, and depersonalizing.

This is the way I already think.  That's why I decided to go to law school in the first place.  I'm cold-hearted, analytical, and always looking for faults in people's writings/speeches/logic.  That's just the way I am.  I start law school in January, do you think I'll do OK?  I sure do.

So, in my view, it's not much of a loss to either society as a whole or me personally.

It's a big loss to society through time taken off work, lost productivity, chemical dependency, hospitalizations, etc.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: lipper on December 22, 2005, 12:09:39 AM
perhaps its the types of students that law school attracts are prone to these feelings. maybe its not law school at all, its the most of the students.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: asitis on December 25, 2005, 10:26:04 PM
here it is a relevant, hell of a thread I found on the kids' board

http://www.lawschooldiscussion.org/prelaw/index.php/topic,38636.0.html
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: magnolia theater on December 25, 2005, 10:36:09 PM
Quote
4) Thinking "like a lawyer": Defining people primarily according to their legal rights, and trying to understand, prevent and resolve problems by applying legal rules to those rights, usually in a zero-sum manner. This involves close inspection of words and writing to look for defects in an adversary's position or which may create future problems for a client. It is fundamentally negative, critical, pessimistic, and depersonalizing. This method of thinking is conveyed and understood in law schools as a new and superior way of thinking, not a strictly limited legal tool.

We call it thinking "like an ass".
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: pleaseacceptme24 on December 26, 2005, 12:54:59 AM
I haven't been to law school yet, but allow me to venture this question. Could the stress of law school, particuarly 1L, have less to do with the volume or rigour of the material and more to do with the lack of feedback through homework assignments, quizes, and midterms that students are used to from their undergraduate days, and that helped them adapt and modify their study habits and techniques? I imagine having to suddenly plunge into a totally new field with tons of reading material and without knowing much about how well you're doing until the final would be incredibly stressful even on people who aren't "whiny", "lazy", or "cowardly", as well as on people who do not need to be "spoon-fed" the material during lecture by their professors. I don't know if 1L really is like that, but that's what I've gathered from reading these boards so far.

I also want to add something to the debate over whether these statistics are due to law school itself or due to the type of students who are attracted to law school. The study posted by the OP says law students come into law school happier and healthier psychologically than other students entering other graduate or professional schools, and concludes from that the subsequent decline in happiness and well-being is due to the law school experience. I think, though, that the "above-average happiness" they experience prior to entering law school is possibly due to the excitement and boost in their self-esteem that they get from being accepted at highly selective institutions after a terribly competitive application process. These students may still very well be more prone to panic, competitiveness, and depression than the average.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ociciornie on December 26, 2005, 07:07:39 AM


1) The top-ten percent tenet: The belief that success in law school is demonstrated solely by high grades, appointments to law review, etc.

2) The contingent-worth problem: The belief that one's personal worth, the opinions of teachers and potential employers, and therefore one's happiness and security in life depend on one's place in the academic hierarchy. Although academic rankings are present in all educational settings, in law school these considerations dominate collective thinking and become identified with personal worth.

3) The American dream: The belief that financial affluence, influence, recognition and other external symbols of achievement are what is good in life, and that academic success in law school will lead to these things.

4) Thinking "like a lawyer": Defining people primarily according to their legal rights, and trying to understand, prevent and resolve problems by applying legal rules to those rights, usually in a zero-sum manner. This involves close inspection of words and writing to look for defects in an adversary's position or which may create future problems for a client. It is fundamentally negative, critical, pessimistic, and depersonalizing. This method of thinking is conveyed and understood in law schools as a new and superior way of thinking, not a strictly limited legal tool.

These beliefs and thought processes have an atomistic worldview and a zero-sum message about life. Nothing much matters beyond winning or losing, and there is always a loser for each winner. The message for law students is to work very, very hard; excel in the competition for grades and honors; to feel good about accomplishments; get the respect of peers and teachers; get a desirable job; and be successful. As a result, fatigue and anxiety replaces initial enthusiasm, particularly leading up to the point of the posting of first-term grades.


I can understand the "need" for grading on a curve on the part of law schools ... I mean, it makes sense for the law school as a financial institution. Not to mention that law schools are expected by employers to rate the meat and impose a kind of slightly paranoid mindset that is very receptive to structural authority/hierarchy. But even the law schools themselves can not pretend the current system of grading represent a "fair" way of measuring the student's knowledge of their courses' content against a neutral baseline.  And I'm not particularly interested in offering arguments to justify this or in helping the law schools make more money

The curve encourages laziness in both professors and students. I hope that our professors, if faced with a brilliant class that "got" more of the material relative to other years or relative to an absolute scale would feel a deep and abiding sense of shame at handing out the exact same percentage of grades year after year. Unfortunately, I think none of them, even the self-styled radicals, will do anything about it. 

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: depositlaw on December 27, 2005, 12:03:02 AM
Law school is only crappy if you thought it would be fun by itself.  But there's always interesting people (especially foreign LLM students), and you're still usually on a college campus with a free gym membership.  And then, there's traditionally only ONE TEST PER CLASS and no homework all semester.  Compared to any other professional degree, law is the easiest and least demanding.  Your med school buddies are pulling 10 hour rotations by your last year, while you might be waking up at noon.  If you can't enjoy law school, you can't enjoy anything.

And if you rent or rented an apartment in Illinois, visit http://www.depositlaw.com to learn how your Illinois - and especially Chicago - landlord might owe you money
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: daverickert on December 27, 2005, 01:49:38 AM
Quote
4) Thinking "like a lawyer": Defining people primarily according to their legal rights, and trying to understand, prevent and resolve problems by applying legal rules to those rights, usually in a zero-sum manner. This involves close inspection of words and writing to look for defects in an adversary's position or which may create future problems for a client. It is fundamentally negative, critical, pessimistic, and depersonalizing. This method of thinking is conveyed and understood in law schools as a new and superior way of thinking, not a strictly limited legal tool.

We call it thinking "like an ass".

;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Grotos on December 28, 2005, 11:25:17 PM
yawn

That bottle of gin starting to hit ya?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Grotos on December 28, 2005, 11:36:13 PM
LAW IS IMPORTANT TO OUR SOCIETY! We have to get it right.

True, but getting it right means reducing the overemphasis placed upon it.  Not writing that statement in all caps might be a good start.  Never forget that, like a bunch of French intellectuals, the legal profession doesn't actually produce anything tangible nor does it generate significant societal capital.  Most annoyingly, American law has no jurisdiction over 95%+ of the planet.  The more professionals who ignore these truths, the more the profession is resented by the rest of us, the one's paying your bills.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: emc on January 12, 2006, 04:09:27 AM
Quote
4) Thinking "like a lawyer": Defining people primarily according to their legal rights, and trying to understand, prevent and resolve problems by applying legal rules to those rights, usually in a zero-sum manner. This involves close inspection of words and writing to look for defects in an adversary's position or which may create future problems for a client. It is fundamentally negative, critical, pessimistic, and depersonalizing. This method of thinking is conveyed and understood in law schools as a new and superior way of thinking, not a strictly limited legal tool.

We call it thinking "like an ass".

;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: 1HellChicago on January 12, 2006, 07:01:38 AM
Now look back at Brooke Shields. Because we all praised her for getting medicated, the lesson to the average person having the kind of problem I describe above is "get mom hooked up on post-partum depression drugs". That message is an absolute SIN and Brooke Shields is partly to blame for promoting such a message. The more healthy thing to do, what my wife and i did, was talk about her depression, talk about her conflicting feelings of love and hate for the baby, talk about the rising frustration that builds up throughout the day with a baby that simply cannot be consoled and that will not stop crying. But people don't want to do this because it's hard work and is confessional in nature.

Post-partum depression is a lot more serious than just contradicting emotions about one's baby. It involves real, emotional AND physical symptoms of depression for the mother, which might mean she becomes so uninvolved that she's not taking care of herself or the baby, and the mother may DO dangerous things, not just have negative feelings she can work through by talking a bit.

If people are too medicated, it's b/c the doctor inappropriately diagnosed this disease. Obviously it's already misunderstood and underestimated by members of the public.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Mimimimi on January 12, 2006, 09:06:14 AM
Now look back at Brooke Shields. Because we all praised her for getting medicated, the lesson to the average person having the kind of problem I describe above is "get mom hooked up on post-partum depression drugs". That message is an absolute SIN and Brooke Shields is partly to blame for promoting such a message. The more healthy thing to do, what my wife and i did, was talk about her depression, talk about her conflicting feelings of love and hate for the baby, talk about the rising frustration that builds up throughout the day with a baby that simply cannot be consoled and that will not stop crying. But people don't want to do this because it's hard work and is confessional in nature.

Post-partum depression is a lot more serious than just contradicting emotions about one's baby. It involves real symptoms of depression for the mother, which might mean she becomes so uninvolved that she's not taking care of herself or the baby, and the mother may DO dangerous things, not just have negative feelings she get work through by talking a bit.

If people are too medicated, it's b/c the doctor inappropriately diagnosed this disease. Obviously it's already misunderstood and underestimated by members of the public.

Completely agree.  BigTex, you simply have no way of knowing whether Brooke Shields was one of those cases that "really" needed medication or not.  So why presume she didn't? 

I have been moderately to severely depressed on and off for almost 15 years, and I have previously always dealt with it through therapy.  While I wasn't as anti-med as you, I sort of felt the same way like I should be able to deal with it without resorting to that.  And I did deal with it, to a certain extent.  I was constantly sad, did not get much pleasure out of life, and cried every night, but I was able to function.  This was until I had a really severe episode during the first semester of law school.

I don't think I can fully explain how absolutely horrible it was, so I won't try here.  Suffice it to say, I finally understood why people commit suicide.  No matter how much objective evidence there is to the contrary, I felt totally worthless, totally hopeless, and like a total burden on all my loved ones.  And the physical symptoms - I went for a month sleeping not at all to a maximum of 2 hours a night.  I had absolutely no appetite and ate maybe once a day; I lost 15 pounds in 2 weeks.  I tried to do my law school reading but I would stare at the page for 20 minutes and literally not be able to understand any of it.  It was like something had taken over my brain.  Finally, I agreed to go on meds, and within 2 weeks, I was functional again.

Maybe, with an extended period of therapy I could have pulled myself out of it without meds - who knows.  But by that time, I would have flunked my entire first semester and most likely dropped out and moved home with my parents, because I simply could not function.  It makes me sad now to think of all the years I've spent feeling miserable when I did not have to.  You say that meds sap intelligence, drive, and creativity, but in my experience, depression does that.  I have done ok for myself in life, but I know I could have done more, experienced more, if this battle were not always at the forefront of my life. 

I am sure I will not convince you of anything, but I wanted to share my experience because I refuse to be dismissed as lazy, cowardly, or otherwise by people who do not understand what I've gone through.  Bradzwest is right that talk like yours is often what prevents depressed people from seeking help in the first place.  Sure, there are examples out there like Brooke Shields, but that is not what most depressed people would take to heart - they take to heart the message that says they are worthless, lazy, that they should be able to get over it on their own - that depression is a character flaw - because that is the deepest fear that they have about themselves.

Please consider yourself blessed that you are able to espouse such opinions without having to confront the real dilemma of whether you would yourself adhere to them or take the "easy" route of medication in order to preserve your sanity and all you have worked for in life.   
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: BigTex on January 12, 2006, 10:24:59 PM
Please cite iconic cultural examples (celebrities, etc.) where the person in question said: "i was having severe emotional problems, so I visited a therapist and worked through my problems both through the support of my therapist and family and friends". Such examples are few and far between. Examples of iconic celebrities saying: "I was severely depressed so i got medicated and everything is awesome now" seem much more prevalent.

The message? If you get on drugs to solve your problem, there was never really anything wrong with you mentally, you just had a "chemical imbalance" that needed correction. However, if you went to therapy that means there's nothing physically wrong with you, rather - you've got the horrible stigma of actually being mentally imbalanced. For shame!

So, yes, I will hold Brooke Shields and the chic Hollywood drug panacea/illusion accountable for this message they foist upon us, a message which shames anyone who actually has the guts to say: "there's nothing physically wrong with me, i'm just mentally messed up right now and need to work this out w/ a professional".

W/ regard to empathy, was in virtually similar situation to above poster in the high-school/college transition. Fortunately, Hollywood had not yet embarked on its "psycho-meds are cool!" campaign, and I felt no pressure whitewash my problems as a "chemical imbalance". So, through professional help, family & friends, and deep and independent self-introspection the obstacles were overcome. It's a shame that such a path is no longer even a conceivable option for many people. "It's not me, it's my chemical imbalance" has become the knee-jerk response expected of us.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Mimimimi on January 13, 2006, 03:48:08 AM
The message? If you get on drugs to solve your problem, there was never really anything wrong with you mentally, you just had a "chemical imbalance" that needed correction. However, if you went to therapy that means there's nothing physically wrong with you, rather - you've got the horrible stigma of actually being mentally imbalanced. For shame!

So, yes, I will hold Brooke Shields and the chic Hollywood drug panacea/illusion accountable for this message they foist upon us, a message which shames anyone who actually has the guts to say: "there's nothing physically wrong with me, i'm just mentally messed up right now and need to work this out w/ a professional".

W/ regard to empathy, was in virtually similar situation to above poster in the high-school/college transition. Fortunately, Hollywood had not yet embarked on its "psycho-meds are cool!" campaign, and I felt no pressure whitewash my problems as a "chemical imbalance". So, through professional help, family & friends, and deep and independent self-introspection the obstacles were overcome. It's a shame that such a path is no longer even a conceivable option for many people. "It's not me, it's my chemical imbalance" has become the knee-jerk response expected of us.

I find it interesting that you separate the mental from the physical to such an extent.  Really, our thoughts are the product of our brains - a physical organ.  I would freely admit that I am "mentally messed up" but that doesn't mean there's not a physical or chemical component to the problem.

You trumpet "family and friends, deep and independent self-introspection", etc., as the "real" cure to problems.  Do you deny that for some people, this doesn't work?  And for those people, what would you have them do? 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: execstyle on January 19, 2006, 02:40:23 AM
tag
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Senior Belding on January 19, 2006, 12:28:50 PM
This is a fantastic thread, actually.

Getting back to the point at hand--

I will make one point--I have that people who have a clear vision of what they want to do with their law degree are generally MUCH happier than those who are just going to law school to make use of their public policy / poly sci degree.

By people who have a plan i mean (not limited to):
-Those who have resigned themself to public interest who actually WANT to do public interest
-science/engineering types who want to do patent law
-People who are actually jazzed about environmental law or international law

Overall, i think the unhappiness rides on the general principle that we all come from places where we were top of the class and respected in that way. Now in law school, only 10% of us get to feel that way (at least around our law school peers). So for 90% of us, we have lost ground which can be a saddening exerience. My whole view is that people outside law school and the legal profession respect you for going through law school in general (and to some degree the namesake of the school) and that people think you are an arrogant ass if you mention "law review" or "summa cum laude" in the same breath as where you went to law school.

So far I feel pretty blase, but optimistic about law school but I am enjoying the new scene. If you have a plan, then law shcool is put into persepctive as just a certification..a bump in the road if you will.


Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Budlaw on January 19, 2006, 01:43:54 PM
This is a fantastic thread, actually.

Getting back to the point at hand--

I will make one point--I have that people who have a clear vision of what they want to do with their law degree are generally MUCH happier than those who are just going to law school to make use of their public policy / poly sci degree.

By people who have a plan i mean (not limited to):
-Those who have resigned themself to public interest who actually WANT to do public interest
-science/engineering types who want to do patent law
-People who are actually jazzed about environmental law or international law

Overall, i think the unhappiness rides on the general principle that we all come from places where we were top of the class and respected in that way. Now in law school, only 10% of us get to feel that way (at least around our law school peers). So for 90% of us, we have lost ground which can be a saddening exerience. My whole view is that people outside law school and the legal profession respect you for going through law school in general (and to some degree the namesake of the school) and that people think you are an arrogant ass if you mention "law review" or "summa cum laude" in the same breath as where you went to law school.

So far I feel pretty blase, but optimistic about law school but I am enjoying the new scene. If you have a plan, then law shcool is put into persepctive as just a certification..a bump in the road if you will.





I'm not top ten percent of my class and I feel just fine. I believe if anyone feels like they're not respected then that's their own personal issues. Same with people who ARE top ten percent of their class and look down on people that aren't, they've got some type of inferiority complex themselves.

Regardless of all that, lawschool is simply a reflection of life and as is anything in life, it's what you make of it.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: sammie on January 20, 2006, 11:22:51 PM
A very interesting thread indeed.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: emilysreasons on February 06, 2006, 03:35:20 PM
BUMP
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: erstes on February 18, 2006, 11:18:26 AM
Awesome thread! Popping it up ..
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Bravo on March 18, 2006, 05:27:51 AM
This ground-breaking book is one of the first to analyze the dark side of law school and law practice. The author, a graduate student at Harvard, draws on his personal experience as a law student to show that a disproportionate number of law students and lawyers become severely disillusioned with their work.

(http://books.lulu.com/author/display_thumbnail.php?fCID=206879&fSize=zoom_)

The book encourages prospective law students to ask themselves hard questions before making a decision to attend law school. It provides revealing insights into the realities of law school and law practice. It debunks dangerous myths about law school and law practice. Yet its most important contribution is the practical system it lays out for helping prospective law students discover if their personalities, values, skills, and interests are genuinely well suited to the law. This book is mandatory reading for anyone considering law school.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: juris on March 18, 2006, 06:36:15 AM
By Lindsey Miller

There is much anecdotal basis for concern about the collective distress and unhappiness of law students and lawyers. This anecdotal evidence is confirmed by many empirical studies. At the University of Arizona, a study of students entering law school showed that they had essentially normal psychological markers; by the first year, those markers had shifted to major psychological distress, and the negative changes continued through law school and the students' early careers. The students had higher rates of clinical depression, with an incidence of 20-40%. A study conducted by the author and a psychologist confirmed these findings. Another study showed that law students have 8 to 15 times the rate of clinically elevated anxiety, hostility, depression, and other symptoms compared to the general population.
 

University of Washington School of Law says that at least 1 out of every 5 of their law students seeks counseling during the course of law school. (if 1/5 law students actually seek counseling, the numbers of students who could actually benefit from counseling is substantially higher.)

If the student has insurance plan, she may receive 15 out-patient mental health visits per policy year. In addition to outside resources, the Law School has a mental health professional on call; services are free of charge to law students. For both financial and workload reasons, the doctor accepts clients on a referral basis.

Sometimes, however, people who could benefit from counseling do not feel as though counseling is necessary. If you have had two or more of the following symptoms for longer than a few days, please seek evaluation and treatment as soon as possible.

The Dysphoric Array:
- Mixture of anxiety, depression, and hostility
- Thoughts of killing self
- Feeling so unhappy that you can not shake it
- Dissatisfied or bored with most aspects of life
- Nicotine use (the most efficient anti-dysphoric on the legal market - significant cancer risk attached)
- Disrupted sleep - never feeling sufficiently rested
- Increased social isolation
- Limiting normal exercise patterns

The Alcohol/Drug Dependent Array:
- Managing sleep patterns through using substance
- Feeling guilty about your use of alcohol or drugs
- Drinking or using drugs creates problems between you and your partner, parent, or relatives
- Neglecting your obligations for longer than a day because of negative consequences related to use
- No memory of time period during use
- Increased social isolation
- Limiting normal exercise patterns

http://www.law.washington.edu/students/StressCounseling.html
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: JC on March 20, 2006, 07:02:20 PM
(http://images.amazon.com/images/P/1931968268.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_.jpg)

Young lawyers are morosely unhappy by every conceivable standard. They arrive at our law schools brimming with enthusiasm, but a decade later they are reporting staggering levels of anxiety, drug addiction, and depression. In legal circles there is talk about a "crisis of professionalism" and a "decline in civility," but the problem goes much deeper. Through ignorance and greed, the legal profession has designed a complicated system of education, licensing, and practice that drives young lawyers into fear, alienation, and self-hatred. The author of this book — a law professor and practicing attorney — argues that young lawyers face a series of institutional absurdities built into the fabric of law school, the bar exam, and law firm practice. The current system is churning out a tidal wave of disaffected and bitter lawyers who see the legal system as a Byzantine maze, an endless artificial game totally disconnected from considerations of justice. The Destruction of Young Lawyers shows how these struggles can be reversed through massive structural change and is the first step toward diagnosis and treatment of the specific problems facing young lawyers.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Harri on March 20, 2006, 09:12:53 PM
Wow, this is something to look into ..
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: arcanismajor on March 27, 2006, 08:18:45 PM
This ground-breaking book is one of the first to analyze the dark side of law school and law practice. The author, a graduate student at Harvard, draws on his personal experience as a law student to show that a disproportionate number of law students and lawyers become severely disillusioned with their work.

(http://books.lulu.com/author/display_thumbnail.php?fCID=206879&fSize=zoom_)

The book encourages prospective law students to ask themselves hard questions before making a decision to attend law school. It provides revealing insights into the realities of law school and law practice. It debunks dangerous myths about law school and law practice. Yet its most important contribution is the practical system it lays out for helping prospective law students discover if their personalities, values, skills, and interests are genuinely well suited to the law. This book is mandatory reading for anyone considering law school.

I don't get why you're posting this on Students' borad - they've already made the decision! I'd understand why this post would appear on the Pre-law board, but here?!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: andthensome on March 27, 2006, 09:37:18 PM
tag
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: hotdiggity on March 28, 2006, 06:12:37 PM
I don't think that applies to all young lawyers, i know young DAs who love their jobs and seem pretty well happy with their lives.  There's a great theory in social psych called cognitive dissonance which basically states that people always have to be able to make sense of their lives and the decisions they made.  This makes sense because a DA doesn't make half the money as a BIGLAW lawyer, yet is able to do something they feel is the right and moral thing to do.  That's why I feel bad for the people who want to write contracts in a beautiful office, they spend all day there, and granted they make good money, yet I can not imagine anyone forseen themselves writing briefs 70 hours a week.  Sure they're making good money, yet I think most lawyers picture themselves arguing not writing.  The point is people don't have to be unhappy if they can keep from letting their own greed or pride get the best of them.

 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: anno domini on March 29, 2006, 05:54:24 AM
Well, after the JD -- at least according to this report -- life is not gonna suck that much, after all ...

http://www.nalpfoundation.org/webmodules/articles/articlefiles/87-After_JD_2004_web.pdf
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: silvercannonca on March 29, 2006, 09:11:34 AM
The reason law students are more depressed then med students is because even the bottom student that makes it through medical school becomes a doctor with the first job paying 6 figures.  the law student knows the chance of waiting tables is very real and even if you get a job, very good chance you'll end up working for a tyrant.  hmm, bleak future for most law students versus very bright future for med students.  i wonder why law students are depressed
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on March 30, 2006, 12:52:55 AM
The reason law students are more depressed then med students is because even the bottom student that makes it through medical school becomes a doctor with the first job paying 6 figures.  the law student knows the chance of waiting tables is very real and even if you get a job, very good chance you'll end up working for a tyrant.  hmm, bleak future for most law students versus very bright future for med students.  i wonder why law students are depressed

The solution is for the ABA to stop approving so many schools.  Seriously, T3 and T4 schools are essentially worthless to the profession.  I would say even most schools outside of the T6 probably are. 

In the meantime, depressed law students will just have to get by on this:

EDIT: I removed the image because it turned into an advertisement, not a picture as I had originally intended.  I apologize.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: hotdiggity on March 30, 2006, 10:07:10 AM
The solution is for the ABA to stop approving so many schools.  Seriously, T3 and T4 schools are essentially worthless to the profession.  I would say even most schools outside of the T6 probably are. 

In the meantime, depressed law students will just have to get by on this:

(http://glam0ur.com/gals/christa_nicole/christa_nicole_003.jpg)

what school do you go to loverofwomen?  honestly i am tired of your idiotic spam posts on this website and i wish you would be removed for advertising porn on a discussion board.  how in the hell do you expect a legal system to survive with 6 law schools providing lawyers?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on March 30, 2006, 03:57:00 PM
The solution is for the ABA to stop approving so many schools.  Seriously, T3 and T4 schools are essentially worthless to the profession.  I would say even most schools outside of the T6 probably are. 

In the meantime, depressed law students will just have to get by on this:

(http://glam0ur.com/gals/christa_nicole/christa_nicole_003.jpg)

what school do you go to loverofwomen?  honestly i am tired of your idiotic spam posts on this website and i wish you would be removed for advertising porn on a discussion board.  how in the hell do you expect a legal system to survive with 6 law schools providing lawyers?

I'm not "advertising" porn; the link just failed.  There was a picture of a beautiful woman earlier.  I apologize that there is no longer.  Besides, it was topical--I pointed a means depressed law students could use to get by.

I said most schools outside of the T6 are worthless.  The leaders in the profession are effectively these six schools.  The other eight of the T14 are OK, but could use a boost in their standards.

Many graduates of T3/4 and even some T1/2 schools are unable to find work without graduating above a certain decile level.  A lot aren't able to even pass the bar.  This is in contrast to medicine, where even an average student at an unknown (but accredited) school can find good work.

The ABA should stop approving so many schools, as I said earlier, but it should also crack down on those which refuse to raise their standards.  Honestly, if your school's bar passage rate is below, say, 90%, the school isn't doing it's job (recruiting and training effective lawyers) and should be denied ABA accreditation.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: those daddies on March 31, 2006, 04:30:17 AM
Quote
EDIT: I removed the image because it turned into an advertisement, not a picture as I had originally intended.  I apologize.

You are excused.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on March 31, 2006, 04:46:18 AM
Quote
EDIT: I removed the image because it turned into an advertisement, not a picture as I had originally intended.  I apologize.

You are excused.

Oh, I was waiting breathlessly for your pardon.  :D  ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on March 31, 2006, 04:48:36 AM
3:47 am

lol
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: hotdiggity on March 31, 2006, 11:54:25 AM
lover of women you still never disclosed what school you go to, are you in a t6 school
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on March 31, 2006, 10:10:41 PM
lover of women you still never disclosed what school you go to, are you in a t6 school

Why should I out myself?  178 LSAT/3.96 GPA, did my 1L summer at a biglaw firm, you do the math.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: hotdiggity on April 01, 2006, 07:44:30 AM
lover of women you still never disclosed what school you go to, are you in a t6 school

Why should I out myself?  178 LSAT/3.96 GPA, did my 1L summer at a biglaw firm, you do the math.

yeah i guess i'll just assume you're lying i don't go to a t6 law school so you'll never have to run into me. 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: jingle bells on April 01, 2006, 08:17:09 AM
lover of women you still never disclosed what school you go to, are you in a t6 school

Why should I out myself?  178 LSAT/3.96 GPA, did my 1L summer at a biglaw firm, you do the math.

LSAT 178?! I'm sorry but you're stupid fella! Take a look here:

http://www.lawschooldiscussion.org/prelaw/index.php/topic,32561.msg576898.html#msg576898

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on April 01, 2006, 09:10:17 AM
lover of women you still never disclosed what school you go to, are you in a t6 school

Why should I out myself?  178 LSAT/3.96 GPA, did my 1L summer at a biglaw firm, you do the math.

LSAT 178?! I'm sorry but you're stupid fella! Take a look here:

http://www.lawschooldiscussion.org/prelaw/index.php/topic,32561.msg576898.html#msg576898



*shrug*

It got me into my top choice school.  I didn't really need anything besides that.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: :: on April 03, 2006, 07:19:55 AM
(http://www2.3wisp.com/gay/collegeboys/corbin95/16.jpg)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on April 04, 2006, 01:13:52 AM
Misogyny.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: tamra on April 04, 2006, 07:43:49 AM
Misogyny.

(http://xsco.net/global/img/memo/nopriv_homo.jpg)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LoverOfWomen on April 04, 2006, 08:50:52 AM
Misogyny.

(http://xsco.net/global/img/memo/nopriv_homo.jpg)

Wow.  Did you just join LSD just call me a homo? 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: eastman on April 07, 2006, 07:02:48 AM
Law school will teach you many things: to think logically, to write precisely, to speak persuasively, to argue effectively, and it will almost definitely guarantee that you become more marketable. Best of all, when you argue with people, all you'll have to say is, "Excuse me, but I'm obviously correct. I'm in law school. Clown."

Though law school can offer you all of these things, there is one thought that must be at the front of your mind when deciding whether to apply: LAW SCHOOL IS A MEANS, NOT AN END. In other words, law school is not supposed to be fun. It absolutely sucks. Even if you end up loving your career as a lawyer, the actual process of going through law school is usually miserable. So with that sunshine-y news in mind, here are a few other not-so-glamorous things to consider when deciding whether law school is in your future:

- For three years, you will ignore your laundry and do the smell test on your socks. Why's that? Although some law schools offer part-time/night programs for the masochists who want to work and study law at the same time, most JD (Juris Doctorate) programs are full-time and last for three years.

- Law school is extremely competitive and stressful. Beyond the glossy brochures (and lawyers' glory-days stories) you have an extremely difficult academic experience in store. Hours run long, tensions run high, and first term grades may run low. You'll read and read and read case after case after case. And then your professors will call on you, asking you to sort out case ambiguities on the spot.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: sdlaw on April 07, 2006, 09:05:59 AM
The solution is for the ABA to stop approving so many schools.  Seriously, T3 and T4 schools are essentially worthless to the profession.  I would say even most schools outside of the T6 probably are. 

In the meantime, depressed law students will just have to get by on this:

(http://glam0ur.com/gals/christa_nicole/christa_nicole_003.jpg)


The ABA should stop approving so many schools, as I said earlier, but it should also crack down on those which refuse to raise their standards.  Honestly, if your school's bar passage rate is below, say, 90%, the school isn't doing it's job (recruiting and training effective lawyers) and should be denied ABA accreditation.

so by your standards Stanford is a bad law school?  1 UCLA 88.7% (235/265)  2 Stanford 88.0% (73/83)  3 Boalt 87.0% (201/231)

The vast majority of lawyers did not go to a top 6 school (although since Stanford didn't pass 90% I guess you would not count them as a good school so now you are saying 5 law schools?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: tamika on April 09, 2006, 06:52:08 AM
After graduating with a degree in Food Communications, I worked as a cookbook editor and a home economist. I knew cookies and calories, not courts and cases. The hours of reading, the Socratic method and indecipherable judicial decisions had my head spinning. Overwhelmed? I skipped that step and went straight to terrified.

But about a month into school, I finally found a guide that brought everything into focus. No, it wasn't Emanuel or Gilbert. It was Harry Potter. The similarities to my own situation struck me immediately as I watched. In the movie — no time for books this semester — Harry goes off to Hogwartz, a wizardry school. Everything he encounters is strange and different. The things he needs to learn seem to have no connection to the outside world. This was my initial reaction to law school.

Harry has classes in potions and sorcery; I learn the black arts of torts and contracts. He studies spellbooks; I study casebooks. An evil teacher skulks around Harry's school; the seemingly evil Socratic method lurks in my classes.

Alas, no magic wand can get me out of trouble when I haven't done the reading for Criminal Law, but Harry Potter's experience made me reevaluate my reaction to law school. Thinking of law school as an adventure, a road to travel to get to my goals rather than as a prison sentence, has lifted my fatigue and anxiety.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: substantianigra on April 19, 2006, 05:53:42 AM
Thoughtful, yet funny, tamika! Your contribution to this thread is appreciated!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: 980eQ on April 19, 2006, 05:04:05 PM
I dont know if I am the only one here with this opinion. I try to take it with a grain of salt. Honestly, I cant think of another profession I want to be in, but as I prepare for finals, and I just took one; I find myself feelings "I have prepared to the utmost of my ability, and that is the most I can do. I killed myself last semester, and I got the grades that I did, right in the middle more or less, based on the fact that I spent so much time upset.

I do this to relaxx, maybe itll help yall:

at least 1 weekend a month, go out and have a good time with a friend... it doesnt need to be someone from the law school.

Dont avoid work until the last minute

talk to your teachers.

I may get flamed for that... but its what works for  me... and whatever will happen will be it.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: dezi on April 19, 2006, 05:10:58 PM
After graduating with a degree in Food Communications, I worked as a cookbook editor and a home economist. I knew cookies and calories, not courts and cases. The hours of reading, the Socratic method and indecipherable judicial decisions had my head spinning. Overwhelmed? I skipped that step and went straight to terrified.

But about a month into school, I finally found a guide that brought everything into focus. No, it wasn't Emanuel or Gilbert. It was Harry Potter. The similarities to my own situation struck me immediately as I watched. In the movie — no time for books this semester — Harry goes off to Hogwartz, a wizardry school. Everything he encounters is strange and different. The things he needs to learn seem to have no connection to the outside world. This was my initial reaction to law school.

Harry has classes in potions and sorcery; I learn the black arts of torts and contracts. He studies spellbooks; I study casebooks. An evil teacher skulks around Harry's school; the seemingly evil Socratic method lurks in my classes.

Alas, no magic wand can get me out of trouble when I haven't done the reading for Criminal Law, but Harry Potter's experience made me reevaluate my reaction to law school. Thinking of law school as an adventure, a road to travel to get to my goals rather than as a prison sentence, has lifted my fatigue and anxiety.

;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: lolla on April 23, 2006, 06:44:59 PM
INTENTIONAL INFLICTION OF EMOTIONAL DISTRESS, among a slew of other charges, is what each and every law students should sue the school for!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: pasha on April 29, 2006, 06:43:35 AM
I remember it so well when I started law school how each and every day when I'd get out of the building I'd feel like I had returned to life again and how I wanted to kiss each and everyone on the train, on the street, it was just like everybody was a good person that deserved to be kissed ... I had never ever felt like that before, it was just like even the-black-dude-clearly-and-unequivocally-a-thug was a good person -- that is how disgusting, despicable was everyone inside that building where I had chosen to spend three years of my life!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: omeg on April 30, 2006, 08:26:37 AM

I can understand the "need" for grading on a curve on the part of law schools ... I mean, it makes sense for the law school as a financial institution. Not to mention that law schools are expected by employers to rate the meat and impose a kind of slightly paranoid mindset that is very receptive to structural authority/hierarchy. But even the law schools themselves can not pretend the current system of grading represent a "fair" way of measuring the student's knowledge of their courses' content against a neutral baseline.  And I'm not particularly interested in offering arguments to justify this or in helping the law schools make more money

The curve encourages laziness in both professors and students. I hope that our professors, if faced with a brilliant class that "got" more of the material relative to other years or relative to an absolute scale would feel a deep and abiding sense of shame at handing out the exact same percentage of grades year after year. Unfortunately, I think none of them, even the self-styled radicals, will do anything about it. 


Being smart and successful in law is possible only for those armed with the "kill or be killed" mentality. Competition is inevitable, but in a cutthroat world that rewards street smarts and cunning — along with good connections and unlimited funds — conquering enemies is the necessary ingredient for true success. You want to know "everything-you-wanted-to-learn-in-law-school-but-didn't"? If you want to be a rule maker, then you must know the rules, which include be bold, don't sleep and be prepared to settle. It's not always pretty and it's certainly never fair, but the sooner one accepts the reality of this cold, hard business world, the sooner the competition will seem less threatening if not entirely inconsequential. Nice guys rarely finish first. Men and women who go to law school to learn how the system works so they can make the world a better place are fooling themselves and are likely not headed for super-success. Understanding how people, companies and laws really work — the "sophistication in litigation" — is what separates the winners from the losers.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ER on April 30, 2006, 09:00:18 AM

Being smart and successful in law is possible only for those armed with the "kill or be killed" mentality. Competition is inevitable, but in a cutthroat world that rewards street smarts and cunning — along with good connections and unlimited funds — conquering enemies is the necessary ingredient for true success. You want to know "everything-you-wanted-to-learn-in-law-school-but-didn't"? If you want to be a rule maker, then you must know the rules, which include be bold, don't sleep and be prepared to settle. It's not always pretty and it's certainly never fair, but the sooner one accepts the reality of this cold, hard business world, the sooner the competition will seem less threatening if not entirely inconsequential. Nice guys rarely finish first. Men and women who go to law school to learn how the system works so they can make the world a better place are fooling themselves and are likely not headed for super-success. Understanding how people, companies and laws really work — the "sophistication in litigation" — is what separates the winners from the losers.

omeg, how about sucking my male private part now?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: lovebiglaw on April 30, 2006, 09:55:34 AM
just do some  lines of coke off a hookers boobs, it does wonders to ward off the depression.  paralegals also work in a pinch.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: system on April 30, 2006, 10:53:27 AM
just do some  lines of coke off a hookers boobs, it does wonders to ward off the depression. paralegals also work in a pinch.

Or even better you could do that line off the girl's a s s; it's definitely hotter!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: sitonit on May 03, 2006, 05:15:30 AM

Being smart and successful in law is possible only for those armed with the "kill or be killed" mentality. Competition is inevitable, but in a cutthroat world that rewards street smarts and cunning — along with good connections and unlimited funds — conquering enemies is the necessary ingredient for true success. You want to know "everything-you-wanted-to-learn-in-law-school-but-didn't"? If you want to be a rule maker, then you must know the rules, which include be bold, don't sleep and be prepared to settle. It's not always pretty and it's certainly never fair, but the sooner one accepts the reality of this cold, hard business world, the sooner the competition will seem less threatening if not entirely inconsequential. Nice guys rarely finish first. Men and women who go to law school to learn how the system works so they can make the world a better place are fooling themselves and are likely not headed for super-success. Understanding how people, companies and laws really work — the "sophistication in litigation" — is what separates the winners from the losers.

This bozo sounds like a law professor .. well, I guess he found what he's looking for!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: emil on May 04, 2006, 04:35:57 PM

Being smart and successful in law is possible only for those armed with the "kill or be killed" mentality. Competition is inevitable, but in a cutthroat world that rewards street smarts and cunning — along with good connections and unlimited funds — conquering enemies is the necessary ingredient for true success. You want to know "everything-you-wanted-to-learn-in-law-school-but-didn't"? If you want to be a rule maker, then you must know the rules, which include be bold, don't sleep and be prepared to settle. It's not always pretty and it's certainly never fair, but the sooner one accepts the reality of this cold, hard business world, the sooner the competition will seem less threatening if not entirely inconsequential. Nice guys rarely finish first. Men and women who go to law school to learn how the system works so they can make the world a better place are fooling themselves and are likely not headed for super-success. Understanding how people, companies and laws really work — the "sophistication in litigation" — is what separates the winners from the losers.

This bozo sounds like a law professor .. well, I guess he found what he's looking for!

;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: H2OFun on May 29, 2006, 07:53:17 PM

I can understand the "need" for grading on a curve on the part of law schools ... I mean, it makes sense for the law school as a financial institution. Not to mention that law schools are expected by employers to rate the meat and impose a kind of slightly paranoid mindset that is very receptive to structural authority/hierarchy. But even the law schools themselves can not pretend the current system of grading represent a "fair" way of measuring the student's knowledge of their courses' content against a neutral baseline.  And I'm not particularly interested in offering arguments to justify this or in helping the law schools make more money

The curve encourages laziness in both professors and students. I hope that our professors, if faced with a brilliant class that "got" more of the material relative to other years or relative to an absolute scale would feel a deep and abiding sense of shame at handing out the exact same percentage of grades year after year. Unfortunately, I think none of them, even the self-styled radicals, will do anything about it. 


Being smart and successful in law is possible only for those armed with the "kill or be killed" mentality. Competition is inevitable, but in a cutthroat world that rewards street smarts and cunning — along with good connections and unlimited funds — conquering enemies is the necessary ingredient for true success. You want to know "everything-you-wanted-to-learn-in-law-school-but-didn't"? If you want to be a rule maker, then you must know the rules, which include be bold, don't sleep and be prepared to settle. It's not always pretty and it's certainly never fair, but the sooner one accepts the reality of this cold, hard business world, the sooner the competition will seem less threatening if not entirely inconsequential. Nice guys rarely finish first. Men and women who go to law school to learn how the system works so they can make the world a better place are fooling themselves and are likely not headed for super-success. Understanding how people, companies and laws really work — the "sophistication in litigation" — is what separates the winners from the losers.

The belief that violence is a reasonable and often necessary route to achieving our aims goes unquestioned in most societies. Violence is thought to be the nature of things. It's what works. It seems inevitable -- the last and, often, the first resort in conflicts. This Myth of Redemptive Violence is the real myth of the modern world. It, and not Judaism or Christianity or Islam, is the dominant religion in our society today.

Walter Wink, a professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in N.Y.C., in an article first published by Bible Society's Spring 1999 issue of The Bible in TransMission, further expalains that our very origin is violence. Killing is in our genes. Humanity is not the originator of evil, but merely finds evil already present and perpetuates it. Human beings are thus naturally incapable of peaceful coexistence. Order must continually be imposed upon us from on high: men over women, masters over slaves, priests over laity, aristocrats over peasants, rulers over people. Unquestioning obedience is the highest virtue, and order the highest religious value.

In short, the Myth of Redemptive Violence is the ideology of conquest. Ours is neither a perfect nor perfectible world, but a theater of perpetual conflict in which the prize goes to the strong. Peace through war, security through strength: these are the core convictions that arise from this ancient historical religion. The Babylonian myth is as universally present today as at any time in its long and bloody history. It is the dominant myth in contemporary America.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: conjugate on May 29, 2006, 08:36:10 PM
Well, I read this thread very attentively and I just don't get why all the "surprise" by the whole law school experience ... I mean, law school is  not  a mere continuation of one's undergraduate (or even graduate) studies -- I think it more akin to "boot camp" where, in addition to certain substantive subjects and professional skills, one becomes "re-socialized," learns to "think like a lawyer," learns to cope with stress and many other things collateral to learning law, but not collateral to "lawyering." Like boot camp (or virginity's loss!), when you enter law school, your life turns a corner past which it can never again pass. Don't get me wrong, I do not regret the trip ... but it brings a permanent change. So, those of you who still have the chance, enjoy the virginity -- law school will bring a permanent change!

It is always fascinating for the outsider to read of the preparation of innocent young men and women to participate in routinized institutionalized violence, which is -- after all -- the essence of law school training. The system requires, first, the dehumanization of the self; then, by natural extension, the dehumanization of everyone else. This is the key to survival in a world where lives must be disposed of as cheaply and quickly as possible.


Perhaps the proper function of a legal education is to produce persons who "think like lawyers": individuals, that is, who are trained to hold various unambivalent yet rationally unjustified beliefs, necessary for the vigorous deployment of social power, that nevertheless remain highly role specific, and are therefore subject to change at a moment's -- or a client's -- notice. Such beliefs help mold otherwise ordinary people into the sorts of state actors who will not hesitate to kill, cage, and impoverish their fellow citizens on what are deemed institutionally appropriate occasions, in much the same way that successful military training renders otherwise pacific young men capable of committing acts of politically sanctioned homicide.


It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: pleaselogin on May 29, 2006, 08:47:24 PM
Well, I read this thread very attentively and I just don't get why all the "surprise" by the whole law school experience ... I mean, law school is  not  a mere continuation of one's undergraduate (or even graduate) studies -- I think it more akin to "boot camp" where, in addition to certain substantive subjects and professional skills, one becomes "re-socialized," learns to "think like a lawyer," learns to cope with stress and many other things collateral to learning law, but not collateral to "lawyering." Like boot camp (or virginity's loss!), when you enter law school, your life turns a corner past which it can never again pass. Don't get me wrong, I do not regret the trip ... but it brings a permanent change. So, those of you who still have the chance, enjoy the virginity -- law school will bring a permanent change!

It is always fascinating for the outsider to read of the preparation of innocent young men and women to participate in routinized institutionalized violence, which is -- after all -- the essence of law school training. The system requires, first, the dehumanization of the self; then, by natural extension, the dehumanization of everyone else. This is the key to survival in a world where lives must be disposed of as cheaply and quickly as possible.


Perhaps the proper function of a legal education is to produce persons who "think like lawyers": individuals, that is, who are trained to hold various unambivalent yet rationally unjustified beliefs, necessary for the vigorous deployment of social power, that nevertheless remain highly role specific, and are therefore subject to change at a moment's -- or a client's -- notice. Such beliefs help mold otherwise ordinary people into the sorts of state actors who will not hesitate to kill, cage, and impoverish their fellow citizens on what are deemed institutionally appropriate occasions, in much the same way that successful military training renders otherwise pacific young men capable of committing acts of politically sanctioned homicide.


It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.

We don't want to admit that we do not stand alone, that we always rely on something that transcends us, some system of ideas and powers in which we are embedded and which supports us. Man can strut and boast all he wants, but he really draws his "courage to be" from a god, a string of sexual conquests, a Big Brother, a flag, the proletariat and the fetish of money, and the size of his bank balance. The irony of man's condition is that the deepest need is to be free of the anxiety of death and annihilation, but it is life itself which awakens it, and so we must shrink from being fully alive.

Evil arises from a good impulse, the desire to escape the anxiety related to death and finitude. The attempt to escape is inevitable given our capacity for imaginatively entertaining infinity and eternity. The attempt to escape, since it is impossible, involves us in all kinds of neurotic manipulations which falsify reality. It is the fear of death which underlies all evil, the harm that we do to each other, and the destructive, manipulative, suffocating and oppressing institutions we create.  

Why do the cultural solutions to the dilemma of death seem to have led to such blood-shed and viciousness as human sacrifice, torture, executions, and wars? Why didn't this impulse lead instead to harmony and peace? The destructiveness arises, Ernest Becker taught, from the need to experience prestige and power on the one hand, and the need, on the other, for expiation of guilt.  

The need for power and prestige is obvious. The role of expiation for guilt requires some explanation. This is not the ordinary guilt we feel when we betray a friend. This is a more cosmic guilt, the kind arising from what the Greeks called hubris. It is the guilt which comes from trying to stick out above humanity's station, of challenging, by implication, the glory of the gods. It is the guilt arising from trying to exist and live heroically. Such guilt is the corollary of the cultural constructions which are designed to gather to themselves eternal and infinite meaning and power. The two go together like the two sides of a coin. The expiation of this kind of guilt in history seems to have almost always involved the shedding of blood, especially that of the enemy in war.  

Expiation of guilt is one reason why the victim must die in our place. There is another and perhaps more important reason. Victims must die in order to certify that the immortality system is intact and potent, because if our national or religious immortality chariot isn't absolutely intact, then it might not carry us to glory. The heretic who questions the true faith and/or the faithful of a neighboring country with a different system must die to assure us that our way is truth, absolute truth, the real and powerful and saving truth which cradles and shelters us from the Void.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: pleaselogin on May 29, 2006, 08:47:38 PM
The frenzy of destruction and the rejoicing in blood and ritualized murder arise from the fact that few can admit that none of our immortality systems or our glory fixes works at all. They are elaborate deceptions, illusions, rituals with no power to save.  No matter how much wealth the rich person accumulates, or how great the power wielded by the king, everyone knows that the relatives will be fighting over the spoils before the body gets cold. Everyone knows that no Reich lasts a thousand years and no family line is assured of perpetuation. Furthermore, insofar as I derive my glory from merging myself with another person or system, to that degree I am less than whole. Borrowed glory is not my glory.

But these are the only buffers people have to shield themselves from the terrible dark and cold of the Void. The frenzy arises from the constant undercurrent of realization that the immortality strategies are illusion. The fact that they cannot save must be denied, hidden, repressed. Rather than to doubt the meaning-conferring system, the group simply presses all the more hysterically the "just war" against internal and external heresy.  Far from being sorrowful, says Becker, these ritual murders become ecstatic rituals of expiation of guilt and celebration of our righteousness. 

The institutions and rituals of society parallel the situation of the inner psyche. The greater the threat to the walls of the self or the system the more frenzied and irrational becomes the effort to shore them up and make them impregnable. Deviants, Becker says, are "dying in our place." They are at once scapegoats freeing us of our cosmic guilt for a passing moment at least, and at the same time the certification of the adequacy of our immortality systems and glory fixes, again for the moment. As the victims die, we find our lives perpetuated and enhanced by their death. The blazing bodies of heretics casts light, if briefly, against the inexorable darkness of infinity. But as with all narcotic fixes, the effects do not last. 

The most vivid modern illustration is the Nazi Third Reich, with its elaborate funerals for dead heroes of the Fatherland, its genocide against the scapegoat Jews and others, and finally its suicidal, fanatic war against everyone outside the citadel of Aryan glory. Hitler was not a throw-back to some ancient animosity. Quite the opposite. He was the madness and futility and frenzy of all our immortality/glory systems taken to their fulfillment and backed by modern technology. The machinations of the political far right and the fundamentalist Christians in the United States are a less violent example of this kind of drive to control. Something more like Whittlers is mirrored in the genocide wars and executions by the Shiite fundamentalists in Iran.

Matthew Fox writes eloquently of the linkage among fundamentalism, fascism, sado-masochism and patriarchal authoritarianism: 

Quote
An almost fashionable fascism arises wherever religion or society repress the mother principle in the name of patriarchy. Power struggles, not mutual love, support and solidarity, characterize such systems. This same kind of competition can be observed in fundamentalist church structures. The authoritarian character who thrives in such a system "is essentially sado-masochistic," according to psychiatrist Anthony Stevens, and is compelled to categorize others as either strong or weak. He worships the former and has contempt for the latter. ... Every sadist has a masochistic side: the bullying adult is trying to free himself from having been bullied as a child. Such a peson deeply enjoys submission to a leader, God, or fate.

And he goes on to write: 

Quote
In a fascist society or religions two areas of the self are aborted or forbidden to develop naturally: sexuality and aggression. Persons are not educated to be true selves but to wear false personas modeled (on the demands of the parents.) ... The child thus instructed often channels these powers of sexuality and aggression into self-loathing and self-contempt. I call this the original sin mentality -- the notion that I came into the world despised, unwanted, ugly and powerless. It may be idsplaced onto a scapegoat, for example, racial minorities, women or homosexuals. It can be transformed into worship of the oppressor who is "always right." Finally, it can be eroticized in sado-masochistic fantasies and practices. This kind of energy pervades patriarchal institutions including the church.

Fox helps us understand more clearly the links among different aspects of evil which continually confuse us. It shows us how self-hate becomes hatred of others and persecution of them. It shows why the macho man, who denies motherly compassion within, comes to divide the world into two categories: my kind and the kind it's OK to kill. It indicates how sexuality becomes linked with rage in the form of sado-masochism. And it shows how this all arises from the seeking of power of being by avenues other than compassionate agape. 

Those who hurt and kill are most often people who were abused and neglected as children. This abuse results in feelings of worthlessness and powerlessness and extreme rage over past mistreatment. They live within the narrow boundaries of the self-systems which are still battling or cringing before abusive parents. These may be as narrow as stage 1 and 2, where there is only "me and my suffering and rage" rebounding back and forth off the walls. These narrow boundaries are threatened over and over every day by exposure to people who live by more out-going values. To defend those walls requires lashing out again and again against others in rituals of demonic sacrifice which assure the abuser that his walls still hold against the invasion of a compassion which would demand giving up rage and revenge for forgiveness.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Budlaw on May 29, 2006, 08:54:05 PM
So where are you guys copying all of this bull from anyway? Because you're not actually typing it yourself.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Budlaw on May 29, 2006, 08:56:46 PM
So where are you guys copying all of this bull from anyway? Because you're not actually typing it yourself.

Oh, here we go: http://www.bridges-across.org/wol/sess6.htm

You guys are pathetic, first you log in with a new screen name, and then you try to pass off someone else's ideas as your own.

Way to go jackass.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: germane on May 29, 2006, 10:13:18 PM
Awesome thread!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: c/p on May 30, 2006, 06:55:36 AM

Fox helps us understand more clearly the links among different aspects of evil which continually confuse us. It shows us how self-hate becomes hatred of others and persecution of them. It shows why the macho man, who denies motherly compassion within, comes to divide the world into two categories: my kind and the kind it's OK to kill. It indicates how sexuality becomes linked with rage in the form of sado-masochism. And it shows how this all arises from the seeking of power of being by avenues other than compassionate agape. 

Those who hurt and kill are most often people who were abused and neglected as children. This abuse results in feelings of worthlessness and powerlessness and extreme rage over past mistreatment. They live within the narrow boundaries of the self-systems which are still battling or cringing before abusive parents. These may be as narrow as stage 1 and 2, where there is only "me and my suffering and rage" rebounding back and forth off the walls. These narrow boundaries are threatened over and over every day by exposure to people who live by more out-going values. To defend those walls requires lashing out again and again against others in rituals of demonic sacrifice which assure the abuser that his walls still hold against the invasion of a compassion which would demand giving up rage and revenge for forgiveness.

A letter to the editor of a small, upstate-New York newspaper, written in 1992 by an American GI after his return from service in the gulf war is disclosed. This person complained that the legacy of the American middle class had been stolen by an indifferent government. The American dream -- he wrote -- has all but disappeared; instead, most people are struggling just to buy next week's groceries. That letter writer was Timothy McVeigh from Lockport, N.Y. 2 years later, he blew up the Murrah federal building in Oklahoma City in what is now the second-worst act of terrorism ever committed on American soil.

As one issue of The Truth at Last, a white-supremacist magazine, put it: "Immigrants are flooding into our nation willing to work for the minimum wage (or less). Super-rich corporate executives are flying all over the world in search of cheaper and cheaper labor so that they can lay off their American employees. . .Many young White families have no future! They are not going to receive any appreciable wage increases due to job competition from immigrants." hat they want, says one member, is to "take back what is rightfully ours." Their anger often fixes on "others" -- women, members of minority groups, immigrants, gay men, and lesbians -- in part because those are the people with whom they compete for entry-level, minimum-wage jobs. Above them all, enjoying the view, hovers the international Jewish conspiracy.

A RHETORIC OF MASCULINITY is what holds together these racist/sexist/homophobic "paranoid politics". In their quest for power these men consider themselves to be emasculated by big money and big government -- they call the government "the Nanny State" -- and they claim that "others" have been handed the birthright of native-born white men. In the eyes of such downwardly mobile white men, most white American males collude in their own emasculation. They've grown soft, feminized, weak. White supremacists' websites abound with complaints about the "whimpering collapse of the blond male"; the "legions of sissies and weaklings, of flabby, limp-wristed, nonaggressive, non-physical, indecisive, slack-jawed, fearful males who, while still heterosexual in theory and practice, have not even a vestige of the old macho spirit."

White supremacists thus offer men the restoration of their masculinity -- a manhood in which individual white men control the fruits of their own labor and are not subject to emasculation by finance capital or a black-and feminist-controlled welfare state. Theirs is the militarized manhood of the heroic John Rambo, a manhood that celebrates their God-sanctioned right to band together in armed militias if anyone, or any government agency, tries to take it away from them. If the state and the economy emasculate them, and if the masculinity of the "others" is problematic, then only "real" white men can rescue America from a feminized, multicultural, androgynous melting pot.

Already sounded familiar? Central to this political ideology is the recovery of manhood from the emasculating politics of globalization.

Remasculinizing men and refeminizing women.

For instance, many of Hitler's policies -- such as the killing of longtime colleague and avowed homosexual Ernst Rohm, or even the systematic persecution and execution of gay men in concentration camps -- were, in fact, prompted by a desire to conceal his own homosexuality. But what do such accusations actually explain? Do revelations about Hitler's possible gay propensities raise troubling connections between homosexuality and mass murder?

They do address the consequences of homophobia, at least -- both official and informal homophobia -- on young men who are exploring their sexual identities. What's relevant is not the possible fact of Hitler's gayness, but the shame and fear that surround homosexuality in societies that refuse to acknowledge sexual diversity. What is interesting about Hitler is not their repressed sexual orientation but gender -- their masculinity, their sense of masculine entitlement, and their thwarted ambitions. They accepted cultural definitions of masculinity, and needed someone to blame when they felt that they failed to measure up. (After all, being called a mama's boy, and told to toughen up are demands for gender conformity, not matters of sexual desire.)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: c/p on May 30, 2006, 06:56:30 AM
Gender is the issue, not sexuality.

The terrors of emasculation experienced by lower-middle-class men all over the world will no doubt continue, as they struggle to make a place for themselves in shrinking economies and inevitably shifting cultures. They may continue to feel a seething resentment against women, whom they perceive as stealing their rightful place at the head of the table, and against the governments that displace them (until they find themselves in the government at least...) Globalization feels to them like a game of musical chairs, in which, when the music stops, all the seats are handed to others by nursemaid governments.

Massive male displacement that accompanies globalization, the spread of American consumerism, and the corruption of local political elites -- fused with a masculine sense of entitlement.

Killers dont just get mad. They get even.Such themes are refound on the disparate bands of young, white supremacists. American Aryans admired the terrorists' courage and chastised their own compatriots. "It's a disgrace that in a population of at least 150 million White/Aryan Americans, we provide so few that are willing to do the same [as the terrorists]," bemoaned Rocky Suhayda, the chairman of the American Nazi Party. "A bunch of towel head/sand niggers put our great White Movement to shame."
It is from such gendered shame that mass murderers are made.

In the last 20 years, the existence of an interesting group of socially created homosexual "monsters" became better known to the average person, although many gay people were always aware of these individuals.

"Malignant bisexuals."

These males seek great power and status in society and understood that hating and punishing homosexuals was always perceived to be a reflection of the "highest morality." Therefore, one of the best "closet" situation available included their participation in the destruction of their own kind; it is now strongly suspected that Senator Joseph McCarthy who headed the American homosexual witch-hunts in the early 1950s was also homosexual. His prosecuting attorney, Roy Cohn, was definitely gay.

At the time few people knew that the hunters of "dangerous", "evil," and "morally weak" homosexuals were themselves homosexual. If, however, anyone fitted negative homosexual stereotypes, it was these self-hating homo-hunters considered to be "morally righteous" because they were reflecting our society's traditional morality; this was the type of morality also used to make the desired destruction of all Native cultures appear to be righteous. We hated homosexuals and behaved accordingly, and Roy Cohn continued his abuses of homosexual people up to his death from AIDS in 1986. He had become very powerful, was very promiscuous, needed to have sex with a male at least once a day, and he could afford to have four or five young male prostitutes on his payroll so that his sexual needs would be met. He was strongly opposed to equal rights for gays, and was totally against the idea of having openly gay teachers in public schools.

Our homohatred also causes other problems such as creating countless males - "monsters" - who are in a psychological closet, have sex with males, and always deny they are in any way homosexual or bisexual. This is done to avoid the total destruction of their self-esteem intimately related to socially learned perceptions. Ultra-macho males in prisons accomplish this by having a belief system causing them to degrade other males to a subhuman level. In accordance to men's traditional view of women, the inferior sex slave status of the males they rape, use, and abuse is deemed to be "the female status." Once males have been magically turned into women, dominant males then consider their homo-sexual activities with these women (also equates to gay-identified males) to then be "normal" and "heterosexual."

There are, however, other ways that similar types of defenses against the homosexual self-label can be articulated. These males to be "homophobic, gay-bashing hoodlums who. . .pick up or are picked up by a gay male, have sex with him, and they exorcize their own homosexual guilt by assaulting and maybe killing him." The "exorcist syndrome" which is a version of the "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" nature manifested by people like Cardinal Spellman and Roy Cohn. The phenomena is also similar to a "split personality" situation. One of the personalities is "the grand inquisitor," as McCarthy and Cohn had become in a spectacular way, and it needs to punish the homosexual part of their 'personality'. This internal war is also projected outward causing these (pathological?) socially created monsters to harm other gay males by ruining their careers or, as other males will do, punishing them may include physical assaults and even murder.

A fascinating aspect of the war waged against gays in our society is the observation that it is often (always?) being waged by repressed homosexuals who may not be homosexually active, or repressed closeted homosexuals who are having sex with males and hate themselves. The targets may be other closeted homosexuals, but the victims are more often visible "out of the closet" gay males. These wars, however, would not exist if our society would stop its highly effective teaching of anti-homosexual attitudes and homohatred which produces many "closets" and all the horrors being described. When we teach hatred, we can expect to reap hatred, and its dividend: SOCIAL VIOLENCE.

Hitler always used established perceptions of morality to sell the proposed abuses of people, and a similar situation existed with respect to black slavery. White supremacists had rationalized the idea that they were doing Black people a favor by having them as slaves! Our abuses of Native people was also based on immorality. The objective was to make them into people just like us because we believed they were seriously lacking.

At least Hitler was sane and knew that trying to make Jewish people into Nazis was impossible.

We were nonetheless claiming to be moral just like all people today who hate gay people and teach such hatred also believe, often in association with the claim to being the most moral in society.

Scratch the surface of the self-righteous and find the devil.
Title: Sadomasochistic personality
Post by: tania on May 30, 2006, 05:05:53 PM

Fox helps us understand more clearly the links among different aspects of evil which continually confuse us. It shows us how self-hate becomes hatred of others and persecution of them. It shows why the macho man, who denies motherly compassion within, comes to divide the world into two categories: my kind and the kind it's OK to kill. It indicates how sexuality becomes linked with rage in the form of sado-masochism. And it shows how this all arises from the seeking of power of being by avenues other than compassionate agape.


Fear of Freedom: Submission and Conformity

German-born social psychoanalyst and philosopher Erich Fromm reported a phenomenon he called "fear of freedom" over 60 years ago. When Fromm published his theory (Escape from Freedom, 1941), he was living and writing in the United States, where European fascism was a predominant thought on the minds of many. Those who fought for freedom in World War I were undoubtedly frustrated by what seemed to be a European readiness to succumb to authoritarian regimes.

In analyzing socioeconomic and sociopolitical problems of Europe during the emergence of fascism, Fromm came to the conclusion that individuals, and therefore societies, have an innate tendency to revert to systems of political and cultural restraint rather than to take advantage of opportunities for freedom or emancipation — and that they may actually seek out governments to control them rather than face the prospect of individual freedom. Fromm's explanation for this type of reversion was seen in the following assertion:

Quote
If the economic, social, and political conditions on which the whole process of human individuation depends, do not offer a basis for the realization of individuality ... [and] people have lost those ties which gave them security, this lag makes freedom an unbearable burden. It then becomes identical with doubt, with a kind of life that lacks meaning and direction. Powerful tendencies arise to escape from this kind of freedom into submission or some kind of relationship to man and the world which promises relief from uncertainty, even if it deprives the individual of his freedom.

The basis of Fromm's theory was his belief that societies, like individuals, progress through a series of feelings of security and insecurity during the process of growing. He likened an individual's dependence upon the society to which he or she was born to that of a child's dependence upon its mother. These dependencies are gradually lost, or "the primary ties are cut" as independence and freedom is sought. However, even as the desire for freedom encourages this separation, feelings of alienation, weakness, and insecurity are growing simultaneously. It is at this point, Fromm believed, that the individual forms a fear of the freedom that is so desired. During the process of growing and establishing freedom from the ties of initial dependence, attempts are made "to overcome the feelings of aloneness and powerlessness by completely submerging oneself in the world outside." If, however, the individual encounters suppression or oppression, the effective result is submission and fear of the process of achieving individuality and freedom.

Expanding on this assertion, Fromm maintained that the extent to which an individual develops (or individuation occurs) is largely dependent on the type of economic and social structure to which the individual was born. Behavior consistent with self-preservation within an individual's economic system or society explains the determination of an individual's character structure, which, in turn, substantiates and magnifies the character structure of the society, according to Fromm. In this circuitous manner, an explanation was proposed for societies with a seemingly predisposed willingness to submit to forms of authoritarian rule as opposed to those societies with a much more substantial resistance.

Fromm stressed the need for an individual to be a part of a larger whole as a factor in the formation of societal character. This need, according to Fromm, is a form of mental self-preservation, similar to the basic need for sustenance. "Even being related to the basest kind of pattern is immensely preferable to being alone." Thus, as people gain a measured sense of individualism and freedom, they are pushed by an uncontrollable drive to join with others, thereby obtaining security in society, even at the expense of individual freedom. This was, according to Fromm, "the negative side of freedom" (or "negative freedom"). Included in the concept of negative freedom was the societal constraint of conformity. Conformity encompasses all of the conscious and self-conscious actions and feelings experienced in the spirit of social assimilation. The fear of being unique, of thinking or acting differently, of standing out in a crowd, can be a debilitating fear — especially when "standing out" might mean torture or death of self or loved-ones.

For conformity and submission to exist within a society, there must be a corresponding need to find security in authority and power. For example, authority and power might be determined by ownership of land and wealth or by the accumulation of business or political strength. Those without land gain security by belonging to groups, organizations, or cultures, and may obtain a feeling of power by discriminating or oppressing other groups, organizations, or cultures. Those with land act in a manner that displays superiority to those without, but may feel inferior in regard to those with monetary wealth. The cash-rich may, in turn, feel inferior when compared to a high-level business executive, who may feel less than adequate when confronted with political power. The feeling of superiority over other persons or groups becomes the ultimate objective in the search for the security that is found in power. Limitations on power are dependent on societal character structure, which is (as previously noted) determined by behavior consistent with self-preservation within the socio-economic system.

Fromm believed that people live in bipolar societies. His characterizations of the individuals within a society might be anthropomorphically ascribed to sheep and wolves, with the wolves lined up on a spectrum of power lust or madness, from a category of good to bad. Sheep could be classified in categories from acquiescent to willing. All (sheep and wolves), according to Fromm's theory, are motivated by feelings of insecurity, alienation, powerlessness, isolation, and fear. Fromm's contention was that:

Quote
In any society the spirit of the whole culture is determined by the spirit of those groups that are most powerful in that society . . . partly because these groups have the power to control the educational system, schools, church, press, theater, and thereby to imbue the whole population with their own ideas; furthermore, these powerful groups carry so much prestige that the lower classes are more than ready to accept and imitate their values and to identify themselves psychologically.

Fromm pictured the masses (the sheep) as being overwhelmed by powerful propaganda (initiated by the wolves), which serves to increase the feeling of insignificance and powerlessness, and increase their willingness to submit. In discussing what he considered to be an "escape" into submission to an authoritarian type of leadership, Fromm described the individual as exhibiting masochistic tendencies — an unconscious need to act in a manner that invites external control. He depicted the sadistic tendencies of an authoritarian leader as stemming from the same escapist feelings. He postulated that the sadistic leader was attempting to gain strength and identity by creating an image of being bound to a greater whole, such as that of the state. Contrary to popular belief, the sadist and the masochist, according to Fromm, have the same character structure. Both exist in a symbiotic relationship that guarantees escape from freedom — because freedom elicits feelings of alienation and powerlessness.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: tania on May 30, 2006, 05:07:32 PM
Fromm portrayed fascism as a perfect example of the sadomasochistic symbiotic relationship that could be exhibited in the entire character structure of a society. He declared that there were "great parts of the lower middle class in Germany and other European countries [in which] the sadomasochistic character is typical." This type of society, according to Fromm, has a strong desire to submit to an overwhelmingly strong authority, while simultaneously needing to be seen and treated as an authority figure among other social groups, thus sustaining a hierarchy of power. Adolf Hitler was seen by Fromm as the embodiment of the sadomasochistic authoritarian. Fromm described how Hitler understood and used the need for security and the desire to escape from freedom via submission to a higher authority. He recognized Hitler's use of the domineering style of oratory as well as the brainwashing techniques that are now known to be used in conjunction with fear, physical exhaustion, alienation, subsequent group assimilation, and the formation of a social structure in which group superiority over others is emphasized.

Fromm delineated a particular type of destructiveness — a pernicious form of continual, subdued, fervent hostility that "waits only for an opportunity to be expressed" — that could be equated to terrorism. This, Fromm believed, evolves from a lack of individual empowerment, the inability of an individual to express self, and the absence of positive freedom. Fromm referred to it as a "thwarting of life." Hitler's Nazi party manipulated and used this type of destructive behavior to further its aims. Ironically, as Fromm noted, the destruction most likely will be aimed at those who offer freedom — the freedom which brings with it feelings of insecurity and powerlessness, the freedom of not knowing what to do or when to do it — fueled by resentment of a new structure that does not possess the power to instill the level of fear that the populous had lived with for many years.

Fear of Freedom: Destroying "Self"

Fromm also discussed a form of mental self-destruction. He noted that an illusory result of the hunt for escape from aloneness and anxiety was the deletion, or at a minimum, a strong suppression of one's real self and the subsequent replacement with what he called a "pseudo self." This pseudo self or superficial self eases into the security of conformity, submission, and identity with a "larger whole." Fromm argued that conformity and submission of the pseudo self was evident in the "part of the [European] population [that] bowed to the Nazi regime without any strong resistance, but also without becoming admirers of the Nazi ideology and political practice." This subset was made up "of the working class and the liberal ... bourgeoisie." These groups, while initially hostile to the Nazi party, collectively dropped their resistance in the interests of hiding within the security found in conformity and submission. Fromm cited a "state of inner tiredness and resignation." Fromm noted that in Germany during the 1930s, the working class developed a strong "feeling of resignation, of disbelief in their leaders, of doubt about the value of any kind of political organization and activity. ... Deep within themselves many had given up any hope in the effectiveness of political action." Thus they suppressed or destroyed their questioning, rebellious, hopeful selves.

But resignation to a devil is one thing — actively fighting for him is another. Fromm observed that an interesting psychological aspect of the suppression of self is the individual's transference of identity to a larger whole (also noted in Orwell's 1984). Although working -class members of Hitler's Germany did not self-identify with the Nazi image, they did identify strongly with their country. Hitler and the Nazi party virtually became Germany:

Quote
It can be observed in many instances that persons who are not Nazis nevertheless defend Nazism against criticism of foreigners because they feel that an attack on Nazis is an attack on Germany. ... This consideration results in an axiom which is important for the problems of political propaganda: any attack on Germany as such, any defamatory propaganda concerning “the Germans" ... only increases the loyalty of those who are not wholly identified with the Nazi system.

Fear of Freedom: Survival of the Fittest

Characteristic of the authoritarian sadomasochist, Hitler began his crusade on the heels of and surrounded by those he considered inferior. The achievement of ultimate power was their driving force. This quest for world domination was, to Hitler, justified as the ultimate realization of Darwin's theory of survival of the strong over the weak:

Quote
The love for the powerful and the hatred for the powerless which is so typical for the sado-masochistic character explains a great deal of Hitler's and his followers' political actions. While the [Weimar] Republican government thought they could "appease" the Nazis by treating them leniently, they not only failed to appease them but aroused their hatred by the very lack of power and firmness they showed. Hitler hated the Weimar Republic because [italics added] it was weak, and he admired the industrial and military leaders because they had power. He never fought against established strong power but always against groups which he thought to be essentially powerless. Hitler's — and for that matter Mussolini's — "revolution" happened under protection of existing power, and their favorite objects were those who could not defend themselves.

In other words, fascist power (like the proverbial wolf in sheep's clothing) has historically been aided and abetted (albeit unconsciously) by the weaker government it eventually replaced. The manner in which both Mussolini and Hitler fell from power (in the minds of those who were ruled by them) was consistent with Fromm's depiction of a mutual sadomasochistic relationship between the oppressed and the oppressor. In Fromm's descriptions of the authoritarian character, one could extrapolate a tendency of totalitarian societies to implode. The sadomasochistic personality sees "lack of power ... [as] an unmistakable sign of guilt and inferiority, and if the authority ... shows signs of weakness, his love and respect change into contempt and hatred." Thus, Fromm explained the basis of Mussolini's fate at the hands of his followers in 1945, Hitler's problems with his trusted elite toward the end of the war.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: mesmer on May 30, 2006, 05:24:43 PM
tania, your expose is admittedly respectable. I would like to add some other interpretations of the "fascism" phenomenon, given the importance the theme will play in the near future.

The insistence that fascism emerged first and foremost through the medium of disturbed or inadequate personalities and that, therefore, its social manifestations are simply the articulation of deeper psychological drives, proved highly convincing within an inter-war context in which psychological theories were particularly fashionable in European and North American intellectual circles - with the general popularisation (and trivialisation) of Freudian beliefs.

Social psychologists of the inter-war period insisted that the key to fascism lay not in the collective psychological breakdown of the masses alone, but rather in the extreme character structures of the fascist leaders and activists themselves, which gave them a messianic mass appeal and the fanatical zeal necessary to achieve their goals, with Hitler singled out as the prime example. Thus the Reich ... [for Hitler] replaces the phallic force of a normal man (Raymond De Saussure's "Collective Neurosis of Germany") The main problem with this "Hitler the deviant abnormality" thesis is explaining why so many Germans accept him as their leader? De Saussure asserted that the authoritarian beliefs of most German fathers were chiefly to blame -- ensuring the development of latent homosexual characteristics in their sons, while unconsciously making the German 'fatherland' into an ideal mother, leading to a subservient attitude towards a centralised state. Further, the advent of the First World War created a secondary 'super-ego' in such individuals fracturing the personality and giving rise a paranoid society which Hitler and Mussolini had exploited politically. Erik Erikson (1942) claimed that Hitler's fascism was a form of adolescent rebellion caused largely by the rejection of his father and ambivalent feelings towards his mother. Taken to its logical conclusion, interpreting Hitler's drives in such purely psychological terms would make one to link his invasion of the Soviet Union in 1942 to an attack aimed subconsciously on a rival surrogate 'Mother' – Russia.

In I962 Martin Waugh wrote an influential article on the psycho-analytical genesis of prejudice and Nazism. He argued that the experience of young children during the First World War was the key to an understanding of Nazism. With fathers were away in the war, their mothers became deeply anxious. The pressures on these individuals in 1920s Germany triggered a regression to a stage of early childhood. He noted that the Nazi party was largely a party of youth, with 10% of the voters in 1933 small children in 1914. Childhood fears during the war years had been projected on the inadequate mother, and therefore the typical castration fears of the Oedipal phase became exaggerated. He also claimed that dire food shortages in 1917 caused "oral regression" which resulted in ego weakness, sadism and increased latent homosexuality.

The Search for the 'Authoritarian Personality'

Another related approach was to find ways of detecting latent fascist attitudes in the wider population, so that incipient fascist tendencies could be uncovered in any society. In 1943 A.H. Maslow listed the basic components of a generic "authoritarian personality" These included a strong feeling of hierarchy, a drive for power, a hatred of some other group/s, judgement of individuals by their surface characteristics, a narrow scale of values, anti-intellectualism, a tendency to sadomasochism and latent homosexuality, hostility towards women, compulsive routinisation and rigid self-discipline, an inability to accept responsibility for one's own actions and a constant search for security. Maslow claimed that if employed properly the psychoanalyst's tools could be used as weapons to identify and therefore nip fascism in the bud . Although Maslow's taxonomy is interesting and suggestive, much of this early work when applied to the real world was extremely crude and an amazing depth of proto-fascism was suddenly and effortlessly detected in the population of the United States, where much of the work was undertaken.

Later, T. W. Adorno, Else Frankel-Brunswik, Daniel J. Levinson, and R. Nevitt Sanford published "The Authoritarian Personality," undoubtedly the classic work derived from this methodology. The book opens with the assumption that "natural authoritarians" are also natural anti-democrats and that such individuals typically exhibit a number of definable character traits, which are then used as two scales for testing. First comes the aptly named "F scale" with anti-Semitism, ethnocentrism, economic conservatism, rigid beliefs, (i.e. the use of violence to solve social and political disputes), stereotyping, sharply distinctions made between "in" - and "out"-group, and admiration for strong and pitiless leadership. By contrast the liberal democrat scale is based upon support for underdogs; suspicion of overblown patriotism; tolerance of deviancy, support for scientific rationalism, and rejection wealth as the source of power and virtue. There is an extraordinary and largely unquestioned normative element in these scales. All conservatives and right wing individuals are automatically lumped under the anti-democratic authoritarian label and all those on the left emerge as natural democrats. Both liberal and left-wing authoritarianism is automatically ruled out. When questioned by researchers employing such assumptions, it is small wonder that most of Adorno et al's subjects fell neatly into the categories prepared for them, so 'proving' the Authoritarian Personality thesis and revealing a huge pool of latent fascists lurking in the US in the 1950s.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: mesmer on May 30, 2006, 05:33:29 PM
Wilhelm Reich and Sexual Politics

In his search to uncover and analyse the still obscure relationship between "social being" and "consciousness", the German Marxist and psychoanalyst, Wilhelm Reich, published his important study Massenpsychologie des Faschismus (The Mass Psychology of Fascism) in 1933, causing his expulsion from the German communist party. Reich attempted to explain Fascism broadly in the form of a bizarre political economy of sex. Elaborating on themes drawn principally from Freud and Engels, he defined fascism as a political manifestation of the psychology of the broad masses frustrated in successive and failed attempts at collective action to attain the democratisation of society in their own interests. Reich's thesis was that sexual inhibition, rooted in the authoritarian family (repressing infant masturbation and the sexual intercourse between adolescents), was ultimately the cause of the authoritarian state's structure and fascist ideology. There was more than a whiff of Saussure-like determinism in this aspect of Reich's work. Reich argued that the Freudian unconscious, characterised as the antisocial element in the human structure, is simply a secondary result of the repression of primary biological impulses by the authoritarian family which is at root of the authoritarian state. Exactly as the patriarchal authority of the father requires sexual abstention on the part of women and children in the family, so too authoritarianism and nationalism are a continuation of these repressed family ties at the level of state structures, holding back democratisation and true freedom. Even modern imperialism is liked back to inter-family rivalry – characterised as "family imperialism".

According to Reich, World War I provided the crucial external stimulus to move this family repression into a new and fascist phase, as it put paid to many of the already decaying authoritarian institutions in Europe and underlay a subsequent attempt on the part of European democracies to lead humanity toward genuine freedom. Instead this process unleashed a "psychic plague" in which forces long repressed by the superficial layer of good manners and the domination of an artificial Ego, which were carried by the same multitudes that searched for freedom, cleared a path toward [fascist] action. Fascism is seen as differing from other reactionary parties in that it is championed by the masses. As a consequence it betrays all the characteristics and contradictions present in the character structure of the modern mass individual. Consequently fascism is not, as is commonly believed, a purely reactionary movement - it represents an amalgam of rebellious emotions and reactionary social ideas. Thus, for Reich fascist mentality is the mentality of the "little man," who is enslaved and craves authority and is at the same time rebellious.

Erich Fromm

Erich Fromm's "Escape from Freedom," published in 1941, and his "The Sane Society," written in 1955 represent the most important studies of fascism conducted by a libertarian leftist social-psychologist. His work mixed the psychology of his one-time collaborator Karen Horney and the philosophy of the "young Marx," in order to discover the individual basis of fascism. His other intellectual touch-stone was Marx's concept of alienation. He denied the neo-Freudian analyses that modern feelings of alienation are the result of a whole society becoming "neurotic." Rather alienation is depicted as highly class-specific, since while the basis of fascism is indeed found in the individual sadomasochistic authoritarian personality, this is largely due to the aggressiveness of an alienated and threatened petit bourgeois class, rather than any collective neurosis effecting all social strata. For Fromm fascism results from a distinctly modern form of alienation, representing an expression of the fears and anxieties of those individuals and groups who had lost their bearings in modern society, which was then extended through populist politics and economic collapse to much wider spectrum of society.

Fromm believed that the events after the First World War had intensified the traits to which the Nazi ideology had its strongest appeal amongst these strata – namely a craving for submission and a lust for power. He also notes that it was not only the economic position of this strata class that declined more rapidly after the war, but its social prestige as well. Finally the war ended the power of the last stronghold of middle class security - the family. For Fromm, modern alienated capitalist society has become inimical to the realisation of human happiness and self-realisation and the search for authoritarian leadership is part of the wider search for new social bonds to replace those which have largely disappeared without replacement. In short, bourgeois capitalist society had created the social-psychological and ethical preconditions for fascism.

Like Reich before him Fromm did not hesitate to assert that fascism and Stalinism also had elements in common and are seen as the culmination of alienation. Individuals are made to feel powerless and insignificant, projecting all powers into the figure of the leader, the party, the state, the fatherland, to whom submission and worship is demanded. Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. Stalin, a cold-blooded, ambitious schemer, was painted as the loving father of his people.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: buttlaw on May 31, 2006, 07:48:34 PM
Delete this thread!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ttbt on June 01, 2006, 06:57:27 PM
Why but?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: K9 on June 01, 2006, 07:44:40 PM
Some amazing posts on page 8 of this thread!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: intheburbs on June 08, 2006, 05:59:03 PM

I can understand the "need" for grading on a curve on the part of law schools ... I mean, it makes sense for the law school as a financial institution. Not to mention that law schools are expected by employers to rate the meat and impose a kind of slightly paranoid mindset that is very receptive to structural authority/hierarchy. But even the law schools themselves can not pretend the current system of grading represent a "fair" way of measuring the student's knowledge of their courses' content against a neutral baseline.  And I'm not particularly interested in offering arguments to justify this or in helping the law schools make more money

The curve encourages laziness in both professors and students. I hope that our professors, if faced with a brilliant class that "got" more of the material relative to other years or relative to an absolute scale would feel a deep and abiding sense of shame at handing out the exact same percentage of grades year after year. Unfortunately, I think none of them, even the self-styled radicals, will do anything about it. 


Being smart and successful in law is possible only for those armed with the "kill or be killed" mentality. Competition is inevitable, but in a cutthroat world that rewards street smarts and cunning — along with good connections and unlimited funds — conquering enemies is the necessary ingredient for true success. You want to know "everything-you-wanted-to-learn-in-law-school-but-didn't"? If you want to be a rule maker, then you must know the rules, which include be bold, don't sleep and be prepared to settle. It's not always pretty and it's certainly never fair, but the sooner one accepts the reality of this cold, hard business world, the sooner the competition will seem less threatening if not entirely inconsequential. Nice guys rarely finish first. Men and women who go to law school to learn how the system works so they can make the world a better place are fooling themselves and are likely not headed for super-success. Understanding how people, companies and laws really work — the "sophistication in litigation" — is what separates the winners from the losers.

The belief that violence is a reasonable and often necessary route to achieving our aims goes unquestioned in most societies. Violence is thought to be the nature of things. It's what works. It seems inevitable -- the last and, often, the first resort in conflicts. This Myth of Redemptive Violence is the real myth of the modern world. It, and not Judaism or Christianity or Islam, is the dominant religion in our society today.

Walter Wink, a professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in N.Y.C., in an article first published by Bible Society's Spring 1999 issue of The Bible in TransMission, further expalains that our very origin is violence. Killing is in our genes. Humanity is not the originator of evil, but merely finds evil already present and perpetuates it. Human beings are thus naturally incapable of peaceful coexistence. Order must continually be imposed upon us from on high: men over women, masters over slaves, priests over laity, aristocrats over peasants, rulers over people. Unquestioning obedience is the highest virtue, and order the highest religious value.

In short, the Myth of Redemptive Violence is the ideology of conquest. Ours is neither a perfect nor perfectible world, but a theater of perpetual conflict in which the prize goes to the strong. Peace through war, security through strength: these are the core convictions that arise from this ancient historical religion. The Babylonian myth is as universally present today as at any time in its long and bloody history. It is the dominant myth in contemporary America.

See my other post.
Title: The McDonaldization of Society
Post by: grande on June 14, 2006, 06:01:50 PM

I can understand the "need" for grading on a curve on the part of law schools ... I mean, it makes sense for the law school as a financial institution. Not to mention that law schools are expected by employers to rate the meat [...]


by Mohamed Zayani

(http://www.mcspotlight.org/media/media_pix/0761986286_01_LZZZZZZZ.jpg)

George Ritzer's "The McDonaldization of Society" is a lucid, and, in many ways, provocative analysis of the increasing entrenchment and steady institutionalization of the logic and structure of McDonald's in almost all spheres of vital activities. For Ritzer, McDonald's is not simply in the restaurant business. Rather than an efficient, cheap, and fast meal, McDonald's offers a whole modus vivendi. This notorious chain has come to epitomize a scandalous and increasingly insistent phenomenon -- McDonaldization; that is, the ways in which the principles of the fast-food restaurant operate in an increasingly wide array of social settings (such as the work place, higher education, and health care). Contributing to the acceleration of these structural changes are several factors, the most important being: the aggressive seeking of economic interests, the pursuit of McDonaldization as an end in itself (and, in many ways, as an attachment to a traditional life style), and McDonaldization's attunement to certain changes taking place within society (namely, increased mobility, expanding needs, working parents, and technological changes).

According to Ritzer, the socioeconomic structures adumbrated by the process of McDonaldization revolve around four interconnected principles: efficiency, calculability, predictability, and control. In a McDonaldizing society, the pressure for efficiency -- that is, the search for the optimum means for a given end -- is enormous. This pressure calls for increasing calculability -- that is, the emphasis on quantity rather than quality -- which in turn leads to a predictability that is enhanced all the more by the creation of precise, programmable, non-human technologies. This pursuit of systematization, standardization, consistency, scientific management, and methodological operation is itself motivated by the desire for greater control over people.

Central to Ritzer's argument is Max Weber's theory of bureaucracy and the larger process of rationalization that underlies it. While for Weber bureaucracy is the model of rationalization, for Ritzer the fast food restaurant is the paradigm of McDonaldization. Both instances describe an organizational model that strives to eliminate inefficiency, irrationality, uncertainty, and unpredictability. It should not overhastily be concluded, however, that the two processes are the same. McDonaldization is not just an extension of rationalization, it is also an extreme version of it or, as Ritzer himself puts it, "a quantum leap" in the process of rationalization. Seen from this vantage point, Ritzer's project is not only an elaborate analysis of the McDonaldization of contemporary society, but also a pointed critique of the excesses of rationalization, in particular, and the legacy of modernity, in general.

While many proclaim the end of modernity, Ritzer argues for its continuing strong hold. His book takes issue with the common view that we live in an era that is radically different from the previous one: "a number of contemporary perspectives, especially postindustrialism, post-Fordism, and postmodernism contend that we have already moved beyond the modern world and into a new, starkly different society. These views imply that this book is retrograde because it deals with a 'modern' phenomenon that will soon disappear with the emergence of a new societal form. This book contends, however, that McDonaldization and its 'modern' characteristics not only are here for the foreseeable future, but also are influencing society at an accelerating rate." While other sociologists emphasize a shift in modern society from uniformity, predictability, and standardization to contingency, uncertainty, and deregulation, Ritzer emphasizes the increasing domination of a system -- that is, McDonaldization -- that is built on many of the ideas that have prevailed in industrial societies, namely bureaucratization, the assembly line, and scientific management.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: grande on June 14, 2006, 06:05:58 PM
The most interesting and most promising aspect of the book is perhaps Ritzer's analysis of the extent to which the rationality of the system imposed by McDonaldization spawns irrational tendencies. For example, the replacement of human by nonhuman technology can be unbeneficial. The worker or the employee is often forced to learn new technologies, master new techniques, keep up with upgraded software, figure out new functions, and memorize new numbers -- all of which means that business often has to pay high prices in order to operate efficiently. In addition, the types of jobs that ensue from the McDonaldization of society are jobs that require almost no skill or thinking from the worker. Whether it be a student serving food at McDonald's or a checker scanning barcodes at a supermarket, there is an increasing dependence upon and subordination to the machine: "Perhaps the ultimate irrationality of McDonaldization is the possibility that people could come to lose control over the system--that it could some day come to control them. Already, these rational systems control many aspects of people's lives."

In the rationalized settings imposed by McDonaldization people be-have not as human beings but as functions of the system. A McDonaldized society is not just a panoptic society a la Foucault -- that is, a society that is structured around quasi-utilitarian principles and based on self-policing -- but also a dehumanizing society: "though it at least appears that people still control them, these rational systems can spin beyond the control of even those who occupy the highest positions within those systems." Because red tape can render bureaucracies increasingly inefficient and unpredictable, individuals become both confused and counterproductive. The anger and frustration generated by the inadequacies of nonhuman technologies can even lead people to undercut or sabotage the operation of such technologies.

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: electra on June 18, 2006, 06:25:24 PM
(http://www.satyamag.com/sat.site.images/adbusters1.jpg)
Title: Re: The McDonaldization of Society
Post by: menlo park on June 23, 2006, 05:31:52 PM

by Mohamed Zayani

(http://www.mcspotlight.org/media/media_pix/0761986286_01_LZZZZZZZ.jpg)

George Ritzer's "The McDonaldization of Society" is a lucid, and, in many ways, provocative analysis of the increasing entrenchment and steady institutionalization of the logic and structure of McDonald's in almost all spheres of vital activities. For Ritzer, McDonald's is not simply in the restaurant business. Rather than an efficient, cheap, and fast meal, McDonald's offers a whole modus vivendi. This notorious chain has come to epitomize a scandalous and increasingly insistent phenomenon -- McDonaldization; that is, the ways in which the principles of the fast-food restaurant operate in an increasingly wide array of social settings (such as the work place, higher education, and health care). Contributing to the acceleration of these structural changes are several factors, the most important being: the aggressive seeking of economic interests, the pursuit of McDonaldization as an end in itself (and, in many ways, as an attachment to a traditional life style), and McDonaldization's attunement to certain changes taking place within society (namely, increased mobility, expanding needs, working parents, and technological changes).

According to Ritzer, the socioeconomic structures adumbrated by the process of McDonaldization revolve around four interconnected principles: efficiency, calculability, predictability, and control. In a McDonaldizing society, the pressure for efficiency -- that is, the search for the optimum means for a given end -- is enormous. This pressure calls for increasing calculability -- that is, the emphasis on quantity rather than quality -- which in turn leads to a predictability that is enhanced all the more by the creation of precise, programmable, non-human technologies. This pursuit of systematization, standardization, consistency, scientific management, and methodological operation is itself motivated by the desire for greater control over people.

Central to Ritzer's argument is Max Weber's theory of bureaucracy and the larger process of rationalization that underlies it. While for Weber bureaucracy is the model of rationalization, for Ritzer the fast food restaurant is the paradigm of McDonaldization. Both instances describe an organizational model that strives to eliminate inefficiency, irrationality, uncertainty, and unpredictability. It should not overhastily be concluded, however, that the two processes are the same. McDonaldization is not just an extension of rationalization, it is also an extreme version of it or, as Ritzer himself puts it, "a quantum leap" in the process of rationalization. Seen from this vantage point, Ritzer's project is not only an elaborate analysis of the McDonaldization of contemporary society, but also a pointed critique of the excesses of rationalization, in particular, and the legacy of modernity, in general.

While many proclaim the end of modernity, Ritzer argues for its continuing strong hold. His book takes issue with the common view that we live in an era that is radically different from the previous one: "a number of contemporary perspectives, especially postindustrialism, post-Fordism, and postmodernism contend that we have already moved beyond the modern world and into a new, starkly different society. These views imply that this book is retrograde because it deals with a 'modern' phenomenon that will soon disappear with the emergence of a new societal form. This book contends, however, that McDonaldization and its 'modern' characteristics not only are here for the foreseeable future, but also are influencing society at an accelerating rate." While other sociologists emphasize a shift in modern society from uniformity, predictability, and standardization to contingency, uncertainty, and deregulation, Ritzer emphasizes the increasing domination of a system -- that is, McDonaldization -- that is built on many of the ideas that have prevailed in industrial societies, namely bureaucratization, the assembly line, and scientific management.


On a side note .. In capitalism, the forms of happiness are constantly passed off as its content. Food is a good example: the attention lavished these days on cooking and going out to restaurants is extraordinary, and yet very little of this has to do with the pleasure of eating. Mostly it has to do with the social cachet to be gained from cultivating a refined taste in food and wine -- or to put it more indelicately, snob appeal. Instead of a celebration of eating, we get the fetishizing of food. If happiness were the main concern, then it would quickly become apparent that there are two conditions that make for a good meal — good food and good company. But no attention is paid to the second of these conditions because capitalist society is organically incapable of doing anything about it. Pretentiousness and arrogance are the rule in fancy restaurants, which almost always leaves a bad taste in your mouth no matter how good the food is; meanwhile, in the fast food chains across the social divide, people mechanically eat denatured, assembly-line food in a cheerless environment where the only sign of happiness is the plastic smile on the Ronald McDonald dummy.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: rosanne on June 25, 2006, 06:30:17 PM

(http://www.satyamag.com/sat.site.images/adbusters1.jpg)


Funny, yet so sad!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: rajoo on June 29, 2006, 12:02:07 AM

In the rationalized settings imposed by McDonaldization people be-have not as human beings but as functions of the system. A McDonaldized society is not just a panoptic society a la Foucault -- that is, a society that is structured around quasi-utilitarian principles and based on self-policing -- but also a dehumanizing society: "though it at least appears that people still control them, these rational systems can spin beyond the control of even those who occupy the highest positions within those systems." Because red tape can render bureaucracies increasingly inefficient and unpredictable, individuals become both confused and counterproductive. The anger and frustration generated by the inadequacies of nonhuman technologies can even lead people to undercut or sabotage the operation of such technologies.


Technology is gonna put an end to the world. People are inherently stupid: they think that just because they CAN do something, they HAVE TO actually do it.

"What do you think about the Third World War?" Einstein was asked. He replied, "I don't know about the Third World War, but I'll tell you about the Fourth." They asked him, "What is it? What is it? What is it?" Einstein replied, "When you go to wage the Fourth World War, it will be with sticks and bows and arrows. We'll be back to primitive man." What the Third World War is going to bring about is complete devastation.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: lejla on July 02, 2006, 11:44:49 PM
Awesome Thread!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: delpiero on July 07, 2006, 01:19:44 AM
Wilhelm Reich and Sexual Politics

In his search to uncover and analyse the still obscure relationship between "social being" and "consciousness", the German Marxist and psychoanalyst, Wilhelm Reich, published his important study Massenpsychologie des Faschismus (The Mass Psychology of Fascism) in 1933, causing his expulsion from the German communist party. Reich attempted to explain Fascism broadly in the form of a bizarre political economy of sex. Elaborating on themes drawn principally from Freud and Engels, he defined fascism as a political manifestation of the psychology of the broad masses frustrated in successive and failed attempts at collective action to attain the democratisation of society in their own interests. Reich's thesis was that sexual inhibition, rooted in the authoritarian family (repressing infant masturbation and the sexual intercourse between adolescents), was ultimately the cause of the authoritarian state's structure and fascist ideology. There was more than a whiff of Saussure-like determinism in this aspect of Reich's work. Reich argued that the Freudian unconscious, characterised as the antisocial element in the human structure, is simply a secondary result of the repression of primary biological impulses by the authoritarian family which is at root of the authoritarian state. Exactly as the patriarchal authority of the father requires sexual abstention on the part of women and children in the family, so too authoritarianism and nationalism are a continuation of these repressed family ties at the level of state structures, holding back democratisation and true freedom. Even modern imperialism is liked back to inter-family rivalry – characterised as "family imperialism".

According to Reich, World War I provided the crucial external stimulus to move this family repression into a new and fascist phase, as it put paid to many of the already decaying authoritarian institutions in Europe and underlay a subsequent attempt on the part of European democracies to lead humanity toward genuine freedom. Instead this process unleashed a "psychic plague" in which forces long repressed by the superficial layer of good manners and the domination of an artificial Ego, which were carried by the same multitudes that searched for freedom, cleared a path toward [fascist] action. Fascism is seen as differing from other reactionary parties in that it is championed by the masses. As a consequence it betrays all the characteristics and contradictions present in the character structure of the modern mass individual. Consequently fascism is not, as is commonly believed, a purely reactionary movement - it represents an amalgam of rebellious emotions and reactionary social ideas. Thus, for Reich fascist mentality is the mentality of the "little man," who is enslaved and craves authority and is at the same time rebellious.


Wilhelm Reich, like Freud, was a medical doctor. At first he had been interested in the physiology of sex but then, under Freud's influence, became interested in its psychology as well. But he always retained an interest in physiology and was the one of Freud's followers who took the most seriously Freud's hypothesis that there existed a material energy form called "libido" or "instinctual sexual energy" and set about trying to find it.

His break with Freud did not come over this, but over politics. Freud was an ordinary defender of liberal capitalism and wanted to keep his theories as essentially a clinical cure for certain forms of mental illness. Reich didn't agree. He felt that a free society could exist if people in general were taught to take a rational attitude to sex. This led him in 1927 to join the Communist Party, from which he was to be expelled in 1933. Reich offered an explanation as to why fascism had developed: sexual repression in early childhood. According to him, the particular form of sexual repression and family life practised in pre-Nazi Germany led to people, including workers, coming to have an authoritarian personality which inclined them to follow and be dependent on leaders, who represented the patriarchal father-figure they had been brought up to believe in and which, as a result, they had a psychological need for.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: niki on July 07, 2006, 12:09:15 PM

The belief that violence is a reasonable and often necessary route to achieving our aims goes unquestioned in most societies. Violence is thought to be the nature of things. It's what works. It seems inevitable -- the last and, often, the first resort in conflicts. This Myth of Redemptive Violence is the real myth of the modern world. It, and not Judaism or Christianity or Islam, is the dominant religion in our society today.

Walter Wink, a professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in N.Y.C., in an article first published by Bible Society's Spring 1999 issue of The Bible in TransMission, further expalains that our very origin is violence. Killing is in our genes. Humanity is not the originator of evil, but merely finds evil already present and perpetuates it. Human beings are thus naturally incapable of peaceful coexistence. Order must continually be imposed upon us from on high: men over women, masters over slaves, priests over laity, aristocrats over peasants, rulers over people. Unquestioning obedience is the highest virtue, and order the highest religious value.

In short, the Myth of Redemptive Violence is the ideology of conquest. Ours is neither a perfect nor perfectible world, but a theater of perpetual conflict in which the prize goes to the strong. Peace through war, security through strength: these are the core convictions that arise from this ancient historical religion. The Babylonian myth is as universally present today as at any time in its long and bloody history. It is the dominant myth in contemporary America.


Exactly! Freud himself has said,

Quote
[...] men are not gentle creatures, who want to be loved, who at most defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness. As a result, their neighbour is for them not only a potential helper or sexual object, but also someone who tempts them to satisfy their aggressiveness on him, to exploit his capacity for work without compensation, to use him sexually without his consent, to seize his possessions, to humiliate him, to cause him pain, to torture and to kill him."

According to Freud, human civilisation is based, and has to be based, on the repression of the basic "sexual" or "instinctual" energy he believed humans to have. What happened, in Freud's view, was that this repressed sexual energy was diverted into the work which had to be engaged in to produce the things humans needed to survive and build up the material side of civilisation.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: wanton on July 07, 2006, 12:17:57 PM

Quote
[...] men are not gentle creatures, who want to be loved, who at most defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness. As a result, their neighbour is for them not only a potential helper or sexual object, but also someone who tempts them to satisfy their aggressiveness on him, to exploit his capacity for work without compensation, to use him sexually without his consent, to seize his possessions, to humiliate him, to cause him pain, to torture and to kill him."

According to Freud, human civilisation is based, and has to be based, on the repression of the basic "sexual" or "instinctual" energy he believed humans to have. What happened, in Freud's view, was that this repressed sexual energy was diverted into the work which had to be engaged in to produce the things humans needed to survive and build up the material side of civilisation.


niki, Freudian theories do not necessarily rule out a free, non-repressive society. Freud's speculation that civilisation is originally based on a necessary sexual repression recognized for its merits, it has been suggested that:

(1) only a part of this has come from the conditions of scarcity which obliged humans to work, with another part coming from living in class-divided societies where ruling classes impose an extra repression over and above that arising from natural scarcity,

(2) with the coming of automation and the like, scarcity has now been conquered. This being so, sexual repression -- that imposed by natural conditions as well as that imposed by class-divided society -- is no longer necessary. Civilisation need no longer be based on sexual repression. A free, non-repressive society is possible.

Herbert Marcuse has in fact explained why people accept capitalism -- they have been psychologically manipulated into wanting it. In other words, their basic "instincts" have been remoulded so as to fit in with capitalist society. The issue now is how will such people come to want to get rid of capitalism.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: blackice on July 07, 2006, 05:12:05 PM
I actually think these numbers are encouraging. Over half of law students and lawyers are NOT depressed or suicidal. Sounds fairly unalarming to me.

Besides, what's the take-home message here? Should we labor to make the study and practice of law like baking a f*king cake so that every backwoods Tom, male private part, and Oprah can practice law? Would that serve clients well?

It's hard and stressful for a reason. LAW IS IMPORTANT TO OUR SOCIETY! We have to get it right.


That's funny!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: hypermoney on July 07, 2006, 05:37:16 PM

[...] Second, the contingent-worth and top-ten percent paradigms create tension by generating insecurity about future employment, competition between peers, a sense that one's worth is only as good as one's transcript and resume, and that, regardless of the rhetoric of professionalism, that personal character, values, ideals and intentions are irrelevant in the practice of law. Schools with a mandatory or strongly suggested grading curve aggravate this effect by creating the impression that the institution is pitting students against each other. [...]


Capitalism itself encourages competition between individuals, pitting them against each other in a rat race for power, privilege and prestige. But we must recognize the fact that such a society is incompatible with human nature. It is an "insane society,"  a "sick society."  Erich Fromm, for example, believed that humans are the only animal species whose individual members have an awareness of themselves as separate individuals, have "self consciousness." This gives us a sense of individuality and freedom, says Fromm, but at the same time a sense of aloneness. According to him, the driving force behind human behaviour is the desire to overcome this sense of aloneness, the desire to feel part of a greater whole, the desire to be liked and accepted by other human beings.

Is it human nature to be completely adaptable or are there conditions that humans couldn't adapt to because it would be contrary to their nature? Fromm comes down in favor of the second view. Humans are social animals, and we need each other not only practically so as to collectively produce the material things we need to live but also psychologically -- we need to feel part of a group, of a community. From which it follows that any society which does not satisfy this psychological need, or which actively works to prevent it being satisfied, is incompatible with human nature. Only a society based on cooperation and community is a sane society as one which properly meets the psychological needs of human beings for a sense of belonging; not just a sense of belonging but a state of actually belonging to a real community.

Capitalism is against "human nature" because it denies, and works against, this basic need. Although capitalism continually seeks to reduce us to isolated social atoms who only collide in the marketplace as buyers and sellers, the basic human need for community still expresses itself even if in distorted and perverted forms. Capitalism can try to suppress the human need for cooperation and community but will never be able to succeed.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: sitvenia on July 10, 2006, 09:35:21 PM

Herbert Marcuse has in fact explained why people accept capitalism -- they have been psychologically manipulated into wanting it. In other words, their basic "instincts" have been remoulded so as to fit in with capitalist society. The issue now is how will such people come to want to get rid of capitalism.


Paulo Freire in his "Pedagogy of the Oppressed" emphasizes the concept of "history full of possibilities," as well as to the notion of class-struggle. He argues for the necessity of a radical transformation of the oppressed' consciousness as well as that of the oppressor's in consequence. To this end he proposes a "teaching method," a philosophy and social theory at the heart of which is the "dialogue,' in classroom and in life. Concrete experiences discussed in class should be linked to politics of culture and critical democracy; we dialogue not for the sake of talking to each-other -- instead, we talk with each-other focusing on a particular object of observation. Dialogue means theory and practice linked together, so that it does not become either simply a conversation or an exercise in overintellectualizing.

Freire argues that the human being is a subject who acts upon and transforms the environment around oneself -- this is his or her ontological vocation. The world is to be seen as a problem, instead of a given environment in which one finds oneself into. In fact, because the human being possesses the ability to reason, he or she is able to objectify his or her existence as well, and thus is in a position to critically think about his or her place and role in the bigger picture of things. People should develop critical awareness and not allow to be reduced to passive receptacles or "containers" to be filled with pre-composed notions.

When people engage in dialogue in a way as to be able to change their consciousness and that of the others' as well, they are not in the world, they are with the world. Demythologizing is what stands at the heart of the problem-posing method that Freire argues for. To do this, to achieve praxis -- with the education process constantly remade in this praxis -- we constantly aim for a more perfect and accomplished human being, a human being always in the process of becoming, rather than being. The problem-posing education emphasizes change as opposed to permamence.

The content of the problem-posing method consists of students' view of the world involving the investigation of people's thinking where their "generative themes" are found (the latter are contained and contain limit situations, which are situations that limit people, but not in and of themselves, but rather by how they are perceived by humans at a particular historical point). The tasks these themes imply require the limit-acts which are directed at resisting and overcoming -- instead of passively accepting -- the "given." Those people who are rendered invalid and restrained by particular limit-situations will begin to act towards achieving the feasibility of the new perception -- the perception that develops once they come to understand the true nature of the limit-situations as being concrete historical dimensions of a given reality. Liberating action, thus, has to do with the way in which these themes are perceived, a process that necessitates investigation of meaningful thematics.

The fundamental theme of our historical period, domination, readily implies that of liberation as the objective to be achieved (as the themes of any era are always interacting dialectically with their opposites.) It is by means of critical thinking that individuals will be able to understand the world in totality, not in fragments, achieving a clearer perception of the whole. To this end, a dialectical method of thought, exemplified in the analysis of a "coded" situation is presented. The "decoding" on the part of students/learners will guarantee moving from the part to the whole and then returning to the parts, so that the Subject recognizes oneself in the coded concrete situation and recognizes the latter as a situation in which he finds himself, as well as with the other people; accomplished as it should, this makes possible for the abstract to be "transported" to the concrete realm, by the critical perception of the subject himself. The task of the teacher becomes the "representing" of the universe of themes to the people from whom it was initially received -- presented to them as a "problem."

For this kind of transformed consciousness to lead to revolution, a process which constantly involves critical reflection (that alone does qualify as action), actors in intercommunion are necessitated. People and leaders in solidarity will transform the reality if they think with each-other. Humanization of people, a process that necessarily implies a liberating education, is a continuous process and it can be better described as a cultural action -- with this educational, dialogical quality being present during all stages of the revolution. In contradistintion to anti-dialogical action, Freire considers the dialogical action as instrument to liberation. Through cooperation (as opposed to conquest of anti-dialogical action), unity for liberation (as opposed to "divide and rule" perpetrated by the oppressors) people and leaders will come to tranform themselves in the process of liberation and eventually find themselves in power.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: youyou on July 13, 2006, 06:38:26 PM

Herbert Marcuse has in fact explained why people accept capitalism -- they have been psychologically manipulated into wanting it. In other words, their basic "instincts" have been remoulded so as to fit in with capitalist society. The issue now is how will such people come to want to get rid of capitalism.


It is the task of the oppressed to liberate themselves and their oppressors as well. The oppressors, who oppress, exploit, and rape by virtue of their power, cannot find in this power the strength to liberate either the oppressed or themselves. Only power that springs from the weakness of the oppressed will be sufficiently strong to free both. Any attempt to "soften" the power of the oppressor in deference of the weakness of the oppressed almost always manifests itself in the form of false generosity; indeed, the attempt never goes beyond this.

But almost always, during the initial stage of the struggle, the oppressed, instead of striving for liberation, tend themselves to become oppressors, or "sub-oppressors." The very structure of their thought has been conditioned by the contradictions of the concrete, existential situation by which they were shaped. Their ideal is to be men; but for them, to be men is to be oppressors. This is their model of humanity. This phenomenon derives from the fact that the oppressed, at a certain moment of their existential experience, adopt an attitude of "adhesion" to the oppressor. Under these circumstances they cannot "consider" him sufficiently clearly to objectivize him -- to discover him "outside" themselves. This does not necessarily mean that the oppressed are unaware that they are downtrodden. But their perception of themselves as oppressed is impaired by their submersion in the reality of oppression. At this level, their perception of themselves as opposites of the oppressor does not yet signify engagement un a struggle to overcome the contradiction; the one pole aspires not to liberation, but to identification with its opposite pole.

In this situation the oppressed do not see the "new man" as the person to be born from the resolution of this contradiction, as oppression gives way to liberation. For them, the new man or woman themselves become oppressors. Their vision of the new man or woman is individualistic; because of their identification with the oppressor, they have no consciousness of themselves as persons or as members of an oppressed class. It is a rare peasant who, once "promoted" to overseer, does not become more of a tyrant towards his former comrades than the owner himself. This is because the context of the peasant's situation, that is, oppression, remains unchanged. In this example, the overseer, in order to make sure of his job, must be as tough as the owner -- and more so. This is because during the initial stage if their struggle the oppressed find in the oppressor their model of "manhood."

The "fear of freedom" which afflicts the oppressed, a fear which may equally well lead them to desire the role of oppressor or bind them to the role of oppressed, should be examined. The oppressed, having internalized the image of the oppressor and adopted his guidelines, are fearful of freedom. Freedom would require them to eject this image and replace it with autonomy and responsibility. Freedom is acquired by conquest, not by gift. Freedom is not an ideal located outside of man; nor is it an idea which becomes myth. It is rather the indispensable condition for the quest for human completion.

It is precisely in the response of the oppressed to the violence of their oppressors that a gesture of love may be found. Consciously or unconsciously, the act of rebellion by the oppressed (an act which is always, or nearly always, as violent as the initial violence of the oppressors) can initiate love. Whereas the violence of the oppressors prevents the oppressed from being fully human, the response of the latter to this violence is grounded in the desire to pursue the right to be human. As the oppressors dehumanize others and violate their rights, they themselves also become dehumanized. As the oppressed, fighting to be human, take away the oppressors' power to dominate and suppress, they restore to the oppressors the humanity they had lost in the exercise of oppression.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: youyou1 on July 13, 2006, 07:27:08 PM
This may seem simplistic; it is not. Resolution of the oppressor-oppressed contradiction indeed implies the disappearance of the oppressors as a dominant class. However, the restraints imposed by the former oppressed on their oppressors, so that the latter cannot reassume their former position, do not constitute oppression. An act is oppressive only when it prevents people from being more fully human. Accordingly, these necessary restraints do not in themselves signify that yesterday's oppressed have become today's oppressors. Acts which prevent the restoration of the oppressive regime cannot be compared with those which create and maintain it, cannot be compared with those by which a few men and women deny the majority their right to be human.

But even when the contradiction is resolved authentically by a new situation established by the liberated laborers, the former oppressors do not feel liberated. On the contrary, they genuinely consider themselves to be oppressed. Conditioned by the experience of oppressing others, any situation other than their former seems to them like oppression. Formerly, they could eat, dress, wear shoes, be educated, travel, and hear Beethoven; while millions did not eat, had no clothes or shoes, neither studied nor traveled, much less listened to Beethoven. Any restriction on this way of life, in the name of the rights of the community, appears to the former oppressors as a profound violation of their individual rights -- although they had no respect for the millions who suffered and died of hunger, pain, sorrow, and despair. For the oppressors, "human beings" refers only to themselves; other people are "things." For the oppressors, there exists only one right: their right to live in peace, over against the right, not always even recognized, but simply conceded, of the oppressed to survival. And they make this concession only because the existence of the oppressed is necessary to their own existence.

This behavior, this way of understanding the world and people (which necessarily makes the oppressors resist the installation of a new regime) is explained by their experience as a dominant class. Once a situation of violence and oppression has been established, it engenders an entire way of life and behavior for those caught up in it -- oppressors and oppressed alike. Both are submerged in this situation, and both bear the marks of oppression. Analysis of existential situations of oppression reveals that their inception lay in an act of violence -- initiated by those with power. This violence, as a process, is perpetuated from generation to generation of oppressors, who become its heirs and are shaped in its climate. This climate creates in the oppressor a strongly possessive consciousness -- possessive of the world and of men and women. Apart from direct, concrete, material possession of the world and people, the oppressor consciousness could not understand itself -- could not even exist. Fromm said of this consciousness that, without such possession, "it would lose contact with the world." The oppressor consciousness tends to transform everything sorrounding it into an object of its domination. The earth, property, production, the creations of people, people themselves, time -- everything is reduced to the status of objects at its disposal.

In their unrestained eagerness to possess, the oppressors develop the conviction that it is possible for them to transform everything into objects of their purchasing power; hence their strictly materialistic concept of existence. Money is the measure of all things, and profit the primary goal. For the oppressors, what is worthwhile is to have more -- always more -- even at the cost of the oppressed having less or having nothing. For them, to be is to have and to be the class of the "haves." As beneficiares of a situation of oppression, the oppressors cannot perceive that if having is a condition of being, it is a necessary condition for all women and men. This is why their generosity is false. Humanity is a "thing," and they possess it as an exclusive right, as inherited property. To the oppressor consciousness, the humanization of the "others," of the people, appears not as the pursuit of full humanity, but as subversion.

The oppressors do not perceive their monopoly on having more as a privilege which dehumanizes others and themselves. They cannot see that, in the egoistic pursuit of having as a possessing class, they suffocate in their own possessions and no longer are; they merely have. For them, having more is an inalienable right, a right they acquired through their own "effort," with their "courage to take risks." If others do not have more, it is because they are incompetent and lazy, and worst of all is their unjustifiable ingratitude towards the "generous gestures" of the dominant class. Precisely because they are "ungrateful" and "envious," the oppressed are regarded as potential enemies who must be watched.

It could not be otherwise. If the humanization of the oppressed signifies subversion, so also does their freedom; hence the necessity for constant control. And the more the oppressors control the oppressed, the more they change them into apparently inanimate "things." This tendency of the oppressor consciousness to "in-animate" everything and everyone it encounters, in its eagerness to possess, unquestionably corresponds with a tendency to sadism. Fromm maintained that,

Quote
The pleasure in complete domination over another person (or other animate creature) is the very essence of the sadistic drive. Another way of formulating the same thought is to say that the aim of sadism is to transform a man into a thing, something animate into something inanimate, since by complete and absolute control the living loses one essential quality of life -- freedom

Sadistic love is a perverted love -- a love of death, not of life. One of the characteristics of the oppressor consciousness and its necrophilic view of the world is thus sadism. As the oppressor consciousness, in order to dominate, tries to deter to search, the restlessness, and the creative power which characterize life, it kills life. More and more, the oppressors are using science and technology as unquestionably powerful instruments for their purpose: the maintenance of the oppressive order through manipulation and repression. The oppressed, as objects, as "things," have no purposes except those their oppressors prescribe for them.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: youyou1 on July 13, 2006, 08:00:11 PM
Those who authentically commit themselves to the people must re-examine themselves constantly. This conversion is so radical as not to allow of ambiguous behavior. To affirm this commitment but to consider oneself the proprietor of revolutionary wisdom -- which must then be given to (or imposed on) the people -- is to retain the old ways. The man or woman who proclaims devotion to the cause of liberation yet is unable to enter into communion with the people, whom he or she continues to regard as totally ignorant, is grievously self-deceived. The convert who approaches the people but feels alarm at each step they take, each doubt they express, and each suggestion they offer, and attempts to impose his "status," remains nostalgic towards his origins.

Only through comradeship with the oppressed can the converts understand their characteristic ways of living and behaving, which in diverse moments reflect the structure of domination. One of these characteristics is the above-mentioned existential duality of the oppressed, who are at the same time themselves and the oppressor whose image they have internalized. Accordingly, until they concretely "discover" their oppressor and in turn their own consciousness, they nearly always express fatalistic attitudes towards their situation. Fatalism is the guise of docility is the fruit of an historical and sociological situation, not an essential characteristic of a people's behavior. It almost always is related to the power of destiny or fate or fortune -- inevitable forces -- or to a distorted view of God. Under the sway of magic and myth, the oppressed see their suffering, the fruit of exploitation, as the will of God -- as if God were the creator of this "organized disorder."

Submerged in reality, the oppressed cannot perceive clearly the "order" which serves the interests of the oppressors whose image they have internalized. Chaffing under the restrictions of this order, they often manifest a type of horizontal violence, striking out at their own comrades for the pettiest reasons. This is the period when the niggers beat each other up. It is possible that in this behavior they are once more manifesting their duality. Because the oppressor exists within their oppressed comrades, when they attack those comrades they are indirectly attacking the oppressor as well.

On the other hand, at a certain point in their existential experience the oppressed feel an irresistible attraction towards the oppressors and their way of life. Sharing this way of life becomes an overpowering aspiration. In their alienation, the oppressed want at any cost to resemble the oppressors, to imitate them, to follow them. This phenomenon is especially prevalent in the middle-class oppressed, who yearn to be equal to the "eminent" men and women of the upper class.

Self-depreciation is another characteristic of the oppressed, which derives from their internalization of the opinion the oppressors hold of them. So often do they hear that they are good for nothing, know nothing and are incapble of learning anything -- that they are sick, lazy, and unproductive -- that in the end they become convinced of their own unfitness. They call themselves ignorant and say the "professor" is the one who has knowledge and to whom they should listen. The criteria of knowledge imposed upon them are the conventional ones. As long as the oppressed' ambiguity persists, the oppressed are reluctant to resist, and totally lack confidence in themselves. They have a diffuse, magical belief in the invulnerability and power of the oppressor. Not rarely the act of oppossing the boss provokes guilt feelings. The boss, in truth, is still "inside" you. The oppressed must see examples of the vulnerability of the oppressor so that a contrary conviction can begin to grow within them. Until this occurs, they will continue disheartened, fearful, and beaten. As long as the oppressed remain unaware of the causes of their condition, they fatalistically "accept" their exploitation.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ism on July 15, 2006, 04:18:47 AM

Capitalism itself encourages competition between individuals, pitting them against each other in a rat race for power, privilege and prestige. But we must recognize the fact that such a society is incompatible with human nature. It is an "insane society,"  a "sick society."  Erich Fromm, for example, believed that humans are the only animal species whose individual members have an awareness of themselves as separate individuals, have "self consciousness." This gives us a sense of individuality and freedom, says Fromm, but at the same time a sense of aloneness. According to him, the driving force behind human behaviour is the desire to overcome this sense of aloneness, the desire to feel part of a greater whole, the desire to be liked and accepted by other human beings.

Is it human nature to be completely adaptable or are there conditions that humans couldn't adapt to because it would be contrary to their nature? Fromm comes down in favor of the second view. Humans are social animals, and we need each other not only practically so as to collectively produce the material things we need to live but also psychologically -- we need to feel part of a group, of a community. From which it follows that any society which does not satisfy this psychological need, or which actively works to prevent it being satisfied, is incompatible with human nature. Only a society based on cooperation and community is a sane society as one which properly meets the psychological needs of human beings for a sense of belonging; not just a sense of belonging but a state of actually belonging to a real community.

Capitalism is against "human nature" because it denies, and works against, this basic need. Although capitalism continually seeks to reduce us to isolated social atoms who only collide in the marketplace as buyers and sellers, the basic human need for community still expresses itself even if in distorted and perverted forms. Capitalism can try to suppress the human need for cooperation and community but will never be able to succeed.


Exactly, in capitalism a person will learn to experience himself alone, in the centre of things for whom everything else exists outside himself, separated by an invisible wall from him, assuming as self evident that other individuals experience the same.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Pericles on July 16, 2006, 04:34:27 AM

Funny, yet so sad!


And the girl was not his! Everyone knows it!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: perseus on July 17, 2006, 11:13:24 PM
great thread
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: vroman on July 20, 2006, 11:15:32 PM
This is a great thread.  I didn't go to law school right out of undergrad.  I went to work as a software engineer first, working for Defense contractors.  I am a minority and I found the work environment as a software engineer very subversive and unfair to me despite my working ungodly hours.  It is not fun sitting up after 13 hours of working trying to talk to a computer whose operating system is cryptic and whose documentation is clueless.  Highly frustrating.  This in a secure area called a "tank", where I was shut off from the outside world.  After 17 years of this crap, the worst of it in CA, I thought the opportunity to go to law school was a breath of fresh air.

Now that I'm in law school, it is hard work for sure, but I love it!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: klinex on July 21, 2006, 04:03:20 AM
vroman, are you erapitt?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: entelle on July 21, 2006, 07:47:04 PM
poppin the thread up
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: weedlaw on July 26, 2006, 01:21:35 AM

It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: hitanerve on July 26, 2006, 02:10:31 AM

It is always fascinating for the outsider to read of the preparation of innocent young men and women to participate in routinized institutionalized violence, which is -- after all -- the essence of law school training. The system requires, first, the dehumanization of the self; then, by natural extension, the dehumanization of everyone else. This is the key to survival in a world where lives must be disposed of as cheaply and quickly as possible.

It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.


This is the post that drove budlaw nuts! LOL! ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: obb. on July 28, 2006, 04:38:21 AM
Me too would have gone nuts
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: AriannaHufington on August 14, 2006, 12:31:42 AM
youyou's posts are amazing! I am saving this thread and printing it out as well!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: i on August 14, 2006, 04:20:55 PM

youyou's posts are amazing! I am saving this thread and printing it out as well!


You better do it fast, cuz I heard this thread is being targeted for elimination ..
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: giddyamericana on August 16, 2006, 04:18:10 AM

The most interesting and most promising aspect of the book is perhaps Ritzer's analysis of the extent to which the rationality of the system imposed by McDonaldization spawns irrational tendencies. For example, the replacement of human by nonhuman technology can be unbeneficial. The worker or the employee is often forced to learn new technologies, master new techniques, keep up with upgraded software, figure out new functions, and memorize new numbers -- all of which means that business often has to pay high prices in order to operate efficiently. In addition, the types of jobs that ensue from the McDonaldization of society are jobs that require almost no skill or thinking from the worker. Whether it be a student serving food at McDonald's or a checker scanning barcodes at a supermarket, there is an increasing dependence upon and subordination to the machine: "Perhaps the ultimate irrationality of McDonaldization is the possibility that people could come to lose control over the system--that it could some day come to control them. Already, these rational systems control many aspects of people's lives."

In the rationalized settings imposed by McDonaldization people be-have not as human beings but as functions of the system. A McDonaldized society is not just a panoptic society a la Foucault -- that is, a society that is structured around quasi-utilitarian principles and based on self-policing -- but also a dehumanizing society: "though it at least appears that people still control them, these rational systems can spin beyond the control of even those who occupy the highest positions within those systems." Because red tape can render bureaucracies increasingly inefficient and unpredictable, individuals become both confused and counterproductive. The anger and frustration generated by the inadequacies of nonhuman technologies can even lead people to undercut or sabotage the operation of such technologies.


The Situationists saw this revolution coming long ago. The French philosophical movement that inspired the 1968 Paris riots predicted what might happen to a society driven by consumer capitalism. The Situationists intuited how hard it would be to hang on to one's core self in a "society of spectacle," a world of manufactured desires and manipulated emotions. Guy Debord, the leader of the Situationist movement, said: "Revolution is not showing life to people, but making them live." This instinct to be free and unfettered is hard-wired into each one of us. It's a drive as strong as sex or hunger, an irresistible force that, once harnessed, is almost impossible to stop.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: yupppie on August 19, 2006, 07:38:53 AM
Quote
... "society of spectacle," a world of manufactured desires and manipulated emotions ...

os6ama is the answer
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: libor on August 25, 2006, 07:59:45 PM

I remember it so well when I started law school how each and every day when I'd get out of the building I'd feel like I had returned to life again and how I wanted to kiss each and everyone on the train, on the street, it was just like everybody was a good person that deserved to be kissed ... I had never ever felt like that before, it was just like even the-black-dude-clearly-and-unequivocally-a-thug was a good person -- that is how disgusting, despicable was everyone inside that building where I had chosen to spend three years of my life!


The hell students go through during law school creates in them a false sense of guilt which may well turn people into criminals. Of the defense mechanisms, psychoanalysts have put forward displacement as their number one choice for explaining crime. A few criminologists have explored the others, most notably, reaction formation, but the list remains largely unexhausted because, essentially, the ideas are untestable. In Displacement, both Id and Superego are so strong and Ego is so weak that person settles for second best or any available substitute (something better than nothing). In Reaction-Formation both Id and Superego are so strong that person does the opposite of both, sometimes identifying with aggressors.

In telling Freud about their early youth, particularly before puberty, people who have afterwards often become very respectable have informed him of forbidden actions which they committed at that time. Analytic work brought the surprising discovery that such deeds were done principally because they were forbidden, and because their execution was accompanied by mental relief for their doer. His sense of guilt was at least attached to something. These people might be described as criminals from a sense of guilt. The criminal has done wrong in order to make sense of "an oppressive feeling of guilt of which he did not know the origin" (See Freud's "Criminals from a sense of guilt," 1916)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: coordinated tie on August 31, 2006, 07:49:01 PM
Wow, libor, a very interesting perspective!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: critical mass on September 04, 2006, 06:19:14 PM
Your username is also very interesting, tie!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: cashback on September 05, 2006, 01:33:09 AM

In 1943 A.H. Maslow listed the basic components of a generic "authoritarian personality"


Maslow was an idiot. He stated that human beings are motivated by unsatisfied needs, and that certain lower needs have to be satisfied before higher needs can be attended to. It is debatable that needs fulfillment occurs in as linear a fashion as Maslow presents (or that Maslows needs structure is entirely accurate). Also, higher needs tend to be more complex and vague in what qualifies as need satisfaction.

Physiological Needs: Maslow speculates that without satisfying basic needs (food, shelter, health) one cannot achieve higher levels of development. This generally makes sense, but the history of starving artists and successful artists who tanked after they became wealthy is important to note.

Safety Needs: Maslow speculates that without enviromental stability (security, safety, consistency), you can't progress to higher levels of development. Neuroscience research would appear to support this, as higher stress contributes to higher cortisol levels, which impair memory and thinking functions. However, low stress can also lead to obesity and cardiac degeneration. The lazier and weaker you become, the more stressful the most minimal tasks and stimuli become.

Love Needs: Maslow speculates that discontentment in your connections with others stalls development. Whether the resolution of love needs comes through good relationships and/or learning to be more internally fulfilled is a question Maslow does not answer. But history would suggest many advanced minds had few relationships so this stage would seem to be more about resolving internal perceptions than as a call for measuring/achieving happiness by quality of external relationships.

Esteem Needs: Maslow speculates that until you develop a good skill set (talent, trade, expertise that you excel at) you will be unable to develop further as an individual (much less reliably support yourself financially). This could mean being a good musician, painter, doctor, carpenter, etc. On some level this stage also requires getting over the need to be appreciated for that skill, internally and/or externally. Even if you develop a skill, you still might be hung up on the need to have other people validate you or you might internally doubt yourself. Then again, you might not be appreciated, or appreciate yourself because your skills are still too undeveloped.

Self-Actualization: Maslow speculates that individual development is the pinnacle of existence, this means pursuing a career/life that really fits who you are and want to be internally (not based on external and societal expectations). The self actualized person is free from superficial concerns and is internally honest. This is unfortunately a never realizable ideal.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Accent on September 12, 2006, 03:20:03 AM
Awesome
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: niels on September 12, 2006, 08:05:25 AM

Your username is also very interesting, tie!


Not to mention his/her signature line...
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: roseta on September 13, 2006, 03:38:37 PM
tie's or critical's?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: einszweidrei on September 14, 2006, 05:23:06 AM
LOL roseta ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: judy on October 04, 2006, 03:28:43 PM

The belief that violence is a reasonable and often necessary route to achieving our aims goes unquestioned in most societies. Violence is thought to be the nature of things. It's what works. It seems inevitable -- the last and, often, the first resort in conflicts. This Myth of Redemptive Violence is the real myth of the modern world. It, and not Judaism or Christianity or Islam, is the dominant religion in our society today.

Walter Wink, a professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in N.Y.C., in an article first published by Bible Society's Spring 1999 issue of The Bible in TransMission, further expalains that our very origin is violence. Killing is in our genes. Humanity is not the originator of evil, but merely finds evil already present and perpetuates it. Human beings are thus naturally incapable of peaceful coexistence. Order must continually be imposed upon us from on high: men over women, masters over slaves, priests over laity, aristocrats over peasants, rulers over people. Unquestioning obedience is the highest virtue, and order the highest religious value.

In short, the Myth of Redemptive Violence is the ideology of conquest. Ours is neither a perfect nor perfectible world, but a theater of perpetual conflict in which the prize goes to the strong. Peace through war, security through strength: these are the core convictions that arise from this ancient historical religion. The Babylonian myth is as universally present today as at any time in its long and bloody history. It is the dominant myth in contemporary America.


In the aftermath of World War I, which some optimists were calling the war to end all wars, the philosopher George Santayana demurred, "Only the dead have seen the end of war." This sort of fatalism is still widespread today, and it cuts across political affiliations. Whether they are hawks or doves, on the left or on the right, many people have come to accept war as inevitable, even "in our genes." The obvious problem with such fatalism is that it can become self-fulfilling. Our first step toward ending war must be to believe that we can do it.

We also need to come to grips with the scale of the problem. As far back as anthropologists have peered into human history and pre-history, they have found evidence of group bloodshed. In "War Before Civilization" Lawrence Keeley estimates that as many as 95% of primitive societies engaged in at least occasional warfare, and many fought constantly. Tribal combat usually involved skirmishes and ambushes rather than pitched battles. But over time the chronic fighting could produce mortality rates as high as 50%.

This violence, some scholars argue, is an inevitable consequence of innate male ambition and agression. "Males have evolved to possess strong appetites for power," the anthropologist Richard Wrangham contends in "Demonic Males," "because with extraodrinary power comes extraordinary reproductive success." As evidence for this hypothesis, Wrangham cites studies of societies such as the Yanomamo, an Amazonian tribe. Yanomamo men from different villages often engage in lethal raids and counter-raids. Like most tribal societies, the anthropologist Napoleon Chagnon, who has observed the Yanomamo for decades, found that killers on average have twice as many wives and three times as many children as non-killers.

But Chagnon, significantly, has rejected the notion that Yanomamo warriors are compelled to fight by their aggressive instincts. Truly compulsive, out-of-control killers, Chagnon explains, quickly get killed themselves rather than living long enough to have many wives and children. Successful warriors are usually quite contolled and calculating; they fight because that is how a male advances in their society. Moreover, many Yanomamo men have confessed to Chagnon that they loathe war and wish it could be abolished from their culture -- and in fact rates of violence have recently dropped dramatically as Yanomamo villages have accepted the laws and mores of the outside world.

In his classic book "On Agression," the biologist Konrad Lorenz acknowledged that it might be possible to "breed out the aggressive drive by eugenic planning." But that would be a huge mistake, Lorenz argued, because aggression is a vital part of our humanity. It plays a role in almost all human endeavors, including science, the arts, business, politics, and sports. Aggression can serve the cause of peace. There are, for example, some extremely aggressive peace activists.

Even if warfare is at least in part biologically based -- and what human behavior isn't? -- we cannot end it by altering our biology. Modern war is primarily a social and political phenomenon, and we need social and political solutions to end it. Many such solutions have been proposed, but all are problematic. One perennial plan is for all nations to yield power to a global institution that can enforce peace. This was the vision that inspired the League of Nations and the UN. But neither the US nor any other major power is likely to entrust its national security to an international entity any time soon. And even if we did, how would we ensure that a global military force does not become repressive?

One encouraging finding to emerge from political science is that democracies rarely, if ever, fight each other. But does that mean democracies such as the US should use military means to force countries with no democratic tradition to accept this form of governance? If history teaches us something, it is that war often begets more war. Religion has been prescribed as a solution to war and aggression. After all, most religions preach love and forgiveness, and they prohibit killing, at least in principle. But in practice, of course, religion has often inspired rather than inhibited bloodshed.

We will abolish war someday. The only questions are how, and how soon.
Title: Male Aggression
Post by: ellaine on October 06, 2006, 02:28:30 AM

This violence, some scholars argue, is an inevitable consequence of innate male ambition and agression. "Males have evolved to possess strong appetites for power," the anthropologist Richard Wrangham contends in "Demonic Males," "because with extraodrinary power comes extraordinary reproductive success." As evidence for this hypothesis, Wrangham cites studies of societies such as the Yanomamo, an Amazonian tribe. Yanomamo men from different villages often engage in lethal raids and counter-raids. Like most tribal societies, the anthropologist Napoleon Chagnon, who has observed the Yanomamo for decades, found that killers on average have twice as many wives and three times as many children as non-killers.


(http://www.warandgender.com/wagcover.jpg)

Excerpt below is from Chapter 3 of War and Gender

The evidence on the entire question of testosterone and aggression in humans is undermined by problems of measurement, reverse causality, and poor experimental design. The main conclusion is that testosterone seems to influence intensity of aggression in some contexts, but these are not well understood and are not dramatic in magnitude.

Social competition and testosterone levels

The reverse direction of causality – from social aggression to testosterone levels – seems stronger. Men's fluctuating short-term testosterone levels respond to competitive situations, such as a tennis or wrestling match, a chess game, or a competitive task in a psychology laboratory. Levels rise in preparation for the competition, and then go up afterwards in winners, and down in losers. This effect does not depend on direct aggression. It applies to any changes in an individual’s perceived status in a social hierarchy. Winning or losing a physical fight often has that effect, but so do other competitions. The testosterone high of competitive victory has been measured in males participating in a ceremony to receive their MD degrees, and even in sports fans when their team wins. (One study of US males in various professions found highest testosterone levels among trial lawyers and lowest levels among ministers – i.e., among the most, and least, competitive professions.

(http://www.warandgender.com/3_fig008.jpg)

The effect on testosterone levels depends on subjective judgments about triumph or defeat, and is strongest when a victory is decisive and results from an individual's own efforts. For example, testosterone changes after professional basketball games correlated not with the game's outcome but the player's assessment of his own contribution to a win or loss and his attribution of the outcome to internal or external causes. Similarly, in judo competitors, post-match testosterone significantly correlated not with the outcome but with the individual's satisfaction with that outcome. Among eight men participating in a New York chess tournament over eight weeks, testosterone levels rose about 10% on average in winners of games where the chess ratings of the players were close (the players expected to have to fight hard to win). However, testosterone actually decreased after a win where the ratings showed ahead of time that winning would be easy (down about 10%, as with losers). In 17 young male first-offenders in a shock-incarceration ("boot camp") program, testosterone levels dropped dramatically in the first month, but less so in six men who started out with a bad attitude and may have refused to feel defeated. Thus, men's testosterone response to competition depends on "cognitive and emotional aspects rather than ... objective ... outcome or physical exertion."

Outcomes of aggressive interactions affect testosterone levels among animals. When male rodents fight over status and territory, the winner of the fight produces more testosterone and the loser produces less. In rhesus monkeys, researchers studied whether levels of testosterone, prior to the formation of a group from unfamiliar males, would predict the eventual status hierarchy that emerged in that group. They did not. But once that hierarchy was established, the testosterone levels in the top monkey rose dramatically, as much as tenfold. After fighting, defeated males' testosterone levels dropped to 10–15 percent of the prior level. In one study, the top quartile in the dominance hierarchy had significantly higher testosterone levels than the other three-quarters. In long-established and stable hierarchies, however, high-ranking and low-ranking males did not differ in testosterone levels. Thus, testosterone levels appear to reflect changes in status -- i.e., winning and losing. Similarly, in experiments where male monkeys displayed aggression but did not win or lose an encounter, their testosterone levels were unaffected.

In one pleasant experiment, five men were confined on a sailboat for 14 days and had their testosterone levels monitored. They had similar testosterone levels before and after the trip, but towards the end of the trip the higher-ranking men (in the social hierarchy that emerged during the trip) had more testosterone than the others. These results parallel those in rhesus monkeys. Another experiment found that men's testosterone levels are higher than usual during and immediately after having intercourse, but only slightly higher if at all after masturbation. This suggests that levels of testosterone respond not just to the physiology of sex, but to contextual aspects such as cultural meanings, feelings, or pheramones. Perhaps even sex is subsumed under competition: intercourse, but not masturbation, scores a win.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ellaine on October 06, 2006, 02:28:55 AM
Since winning social conflicts increases testosterone levels, winners are presumably more sexually motivated than losers. In some species, high-status males who win conflicts (and, sometimes, control territory) do most of the breeding. This may be the original evolutionary reason for testosterone to rise in winners -- a higher status in the social hierarchy implying more sexual opportunities. The lingering effects on our physiology could help explain both Henry Kissinger's claim that "power is the great aphrodisiac," and the expansive sexual proclivities of many male political leaders. However, the status hierarchy as regu-lator of sexual access (rather than just access to food and resources) does not seem to apply well to humans and closely related species. Nonetheless, the competition-testosterone effect may dampen or augment soldiers' sexuality, since their testosterone levels must move en masse -- downward during both basic training and extended combat (especially for a losing army), but upward before battle and (especially) after a victory.

Does the testosterone response to competition occur in women as well as in men? Evidence is scant, but suggests it does not. Testosterone levels rose before a male–male competition in a video game, but not before a female–female competition. (Neither gender showed a post-outcome response in this experiment, however.) "Apparently T [testosterone] works differently in competition between men than between women." Similarly, when elite women athletes played volleyball and handball, their androgen levels did not change. Testosterone effects in male–female competition or dominance "have yet to be addressed in research with humans."

Biochemical pathways. The biochemistry by which individual biology carries out these testosterone effects is fairly well understood. In short, subjective judgments about a person's social rank drive a frontal lobe–amygdala–hypothalamus–pituitary–gonad axis, modulating testosterone production and thus regulating the expression of certain genes. Direct connections link part of the brain's frontal lobes -- very large in humans, and central to complex social behaviors including aggression -- to the amygdala (which also receives sensory information from the cortex). Nerve bundles in turn link the amygdala to the hypothalamus, generating hormones appropriate to motivated behaviors. The electrical activity of the amygdala "increases during social aggression in monkeys." Damage to the amygdala reduces aggressive behavior in animals and makes monkeys lose social rank. Similarly, damage to the hypothalamus reduces both aggressive and sexual behaviors in male rats, whereas implanting testosterone there restores these behaviors in castrated males.

(http://www.warandgender.com/3_fig008.jpg)
Feedback of social environment and testosterone.

Thus, sex hormones play an important role in translating social contexts and events – via the frontal lobes, amygdala, hypothalamus, and gonads -- into social behaviors such as intermale aggression. The "hypothalamic–pituitary–gonadal axis" described by biologists -- illustrated on the right side of the above picture -- is embedded in a feedback loop mediated by social relationships on the left side of the figure. Higher testosterone makes individual males stronger and more aggressive towards those already targeted for aggression (those at lower levels in a status hierarchy), though testosterone levels do not directly affect the status hierarchy itself, as we have seen. The right-hand feedback loop, internal to the body, is a self-regulating (negative feedback) loop typical of biological organisms. The left-hand loop, however, tends to be a positive loop (though strongly influenced by external forces) because males who rise in status by winning fights have higher testosterone levels, which make them both stronger and more aggressive towards underlings, in turn making them win fights and boost testosterone.

Testosterone is, however, only a minor influence on changes in status hierarchy, as compared with "social context." This context includes the formation and shifting membership of coalitions (especially important near the top of the hierarchy where an "alpha male" often needs allies to stay in power), individual deaths and comings of age, individual intelligence and learning, scarcity or abundance of resources, and other complex elements that affect hierarchical social relationships.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: takeitback on October 06, 2006, 07:41:54 PM
You guys are so funny! ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: harris on October 08, 2006, 11:49:24 PM
Aggression has to do with many hormones AND neurotransmitters. You have testosterone, cortisol, thyroxine, adrenaline, catecholamines, and so on ..
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: littleby on October 11, 2006, 11:47:39 PM

Capitalism itself encourages competition between individuals, pitting them against each other in a rat race for power, privilege and prestige. But we must recognize the fact that such a society is incompatible with human nature. It is an "insane society,"  a "sick society."  Erich Fromm, for example, believed that humans are the only animal species whose individual members have an awareness of themselves as separate individuals, have "self consciousness." This gives us a sense of individuality and freedom, says Fromm, but at the same time a sense of aloneness. According to him, the driving force behind human behaviour is the desire to overcome this sense of aloneness, the desire to feel part of a greater whole, the desire to be liked and accepted by other human beings.

Is it human nature to be completely adaptable or are there conditions that humans couldn't adapt to because it would be contrary to their nature? Fromm comes down in favor of the second view. Humans are social animals, and we need each other not only practically so as to collectively produce the material things we need to live but also psychologically -- we need to feel part of a group, of a community. From which it follows that any society which does not satisfy this psychological need, or which actively works to prevent it being satisfied, is incompatible with human nature. Only a society based on cooperation and community is a sane society as one which properly meets the psychological needs of human beings for a sense of belonging; not just a sense of belonging but a state of actually belonging to a real community.

Capitalism is against "human nature" because it denies, and works against, this basic need. Although capitalism continually seeks to reduce us to isolated social atoms who only collide in the marketplace as buyers and sellers, the basic human need for community still expresses itself even if in distorted and perverted forms. Capitalism can try to suppress the human need for cooperation and community but will never be able to succeed.


America fakes elections, re-enslaves blacks, continually disenfranchises its middle class, exports torture, and threatens the world with chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons of mass destruction. At the same time it promotes a myth it is an enlightened nation resorting to covert assassination and lying to its citizens only because it must do so to survive in a vicious world. Believers fail to see that the most vicious nation must bear some responsibility for a international climate of viciousness. Their belief is essential to success, the only criterion of value America recognizes.

In direct competition to the American-style cotton-candy Christianity is gangsta morality, a side-effect of 50 years of public American piracy, a common vision shared by George Bushes, Dr. Dres and Eminems, Al Pacino characters and Henry Kissinger, celebrating the use and threat of force and intimidation to gain power. Kissinger's tactic of encouraging the world to think that the President was violent, brutal and insane is the link between a Nixon, Reagan or Bush foreign policy statement and a lyric like Snoop Dog's seminal, "rat a tat tat, rat a tat tat, never hesitate to shoot a n-word in the back" or any of a million other quotable rap lyrics. The difference is that the Bushes are making the money while black youth embrace a message which destines them to death, jail, or, for a very few, a conditional and precarious success based on maintaining the trust of their white masters.

While liberals look the other way, the School of the Americas pumps out torturers. The liberal morality is not Christian but a vague belief in science resting atop an uneasy and heterogeneous combination of Enlightenment, materialist/Protestant and pagan values. Christianity is considered synonymous with ignorance, although it retains a nostalgic, kitsch appeal. The United States incarcerates more people than any other country; more than China. We have one twentieth of the world's population but one fourth of its prisoners. We have seven times the rate of incarceration of comparable industrial European nations, although we have a nearly equal crime rate. Drug offenses are a large source of inmates, whose labor is now accessible to manufacture commercial goods.

America celebrates stupidity in order to help people ignore the dissonance between their belief that America is a democratic nation with civil rights and the fact that it is an Orwellian totalitarian state derived from lessons learned in the "great experiments" of Fascism and Stalinism. Popular culture celebrates stupidity as an end in itself and as a road to happiness. Recent examples are by no means limited to Forrest Gump, South Park, Jackass, George W. Bush, and the WWE. They only expand an older tradition of "aw shucks" ignorance. Before, the awshucks had to be combined with an audacious, aggressive optimism; now it is best when combined with ruthless brutality and a psychotic sense of humor. While the psychopathic ravings of a rapper are considered entertaining, the re-enslaving of African Americans in the prison-industrial complex is justified in the white mind by the very same lyrics. Popular culture serves up rebellion to the masses in such a way that when and if they finally act out against the state that makes them miserable their very act of rebellion finally supports that state. The belief that popular culture produces what the masses want is one of the beliefs that supports the fascist structure and promotes isolation among those who reject its pabulum.

As the New Rome arises, which is ultimately the Only Rome (Old Rome but a foreshadowing) we are being given our new gladiatorial spectacles. Enlightenment structures are left standing because they obstruct the public's view of the new hegemony of terror. The center vanishes and intellectual and moral cohesion vanishes or diffuses into the new matrix of unbridled power politics, i.e., violence and terror. The taboo against nuclear warfare, sacred since Nagasaki, is wearing thin, as biological and chemical warfare are actively pursued by the state in compulsory vaccination programs, AIDS, spraying of populations, fluoridation, assaults by civil forces on domestic foes using military hardware, and again, in a way, the crack epidemic.

Christianity was the savory smell that drew the Goths and Vandals into the Roman fold, useful under feudal conditions for the management of serfs; in this late industrial period it mobilizes a social force that is pro-war, pro-death penalty, pro-private property, and notoriously judgmental. The irony of Christianity is that since Paul it has always been used in the support of something which is the opposite of the stated doctrines of Christ. The Church renders these doctrines impotent. By memorializing them as the incomprehensible words of a divine figure and emphasizing the sense of mystery and ritual, the Church neutralized Christ and yet wielded his charisma in the mediaeval Disneyland of the Gothic Cathedral to maintain the spore of Rome in the way that Jennifer Lopez and Puff Daddy magnetize people to American prison culture.

The connection of the New World Order to Hitlerism is not only revealed in its propaganda terminology but also in myriad tendrils, personal and institutional, from the silverware used by the Bushes at the Skull and Bones club, which counted Hitler among its previous owners, to loans made from Prescott Bush to Nazi Germany after 1942, to the practice extreme methods of torture and killing by the state intelligence apparatus (albeit it often outside national boundaries and by proxy.) However, to call the New World Order a Nazi or Fascist state is to obscure the progress that has been made in euthanasia since the middle of the twentieth century.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: egolaw on November 03, 2006, 08:54:39 PM
Quote
America celebrates stupidity in order to help people ignore the dissonance between their belief that America is a democratic nation with civil rights and the fact that it is an Orwellian totalitarian state derived from lessons learned in the "great experiments" of Fascism and Stalinism.
Title: Re: The McDonaldization of Society
Post by: ilove on November 05, 2006, 06:37:47 PM

I can understand the "need" for grading on a curve on the part of law schools ... I mean, it makes sense for the law school as a financial institution. Not to mention that law schools are expected by employers to rate the meat [...]


by Mohamed Zayani

(http://www.mcspotlight.org/media/media_pix/0761986286_01_LZZZZZZZ.jpg)


Central to Ritzer's argument is Max Weber's theory of bureaucracy and the larger process of rationalization that underlies it. While for Weber bureaucracy is the model of rationalization, for Ritzer the fast food restaurant is the paradigm of McDonaldization. Both instances describe an organizational model that strives to eliminate inefficiency, irrationality, uncertainty, and unpredictability. It should not overhastily be concluded, however, that the two processes are the same. McDonaldization is not just an extension of rationalization, it is also an extreme version of it or, as Ritzer himself puts it, "a quantum leap" in the process of rationalization. Seen from this vantage point, Ritzer's project is not only an elaborate analysis of the McDonaldization of contemporary society, but also a pointed critique of the excesses of rationalization, in particular, and the legacy of modernity, in general.


Along the lines of the "Legal Reasoning" thread thesis ...
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: gejco on November 06, 2006, 04:57:03 AM
Interesting username, Ilove!
Title: tastes like musk btw
Post by: theworldinahand on November 06, 2006, 10:43:40 PM

Aggression has to do with many hormones AND neurotransmitters. You have testosterone, cortisol, thyroxine, adrenaline, catecholamines, and so on ..


Handling a gun stirs a hormonal reaction in men that primes them for aggression, new research suggests. Psychologists at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill., enrolled 30 male students in what they described as a taste study. The researchers took saliva samples from the students and measured testosterone levels.

They then seated the young men, one at a time, at a table in a bare room; on the table were pieces of paper and either the board game Mouse Trap or a large handgun. Their instructions: take apart the game or the gun and write directions for assembly and disassembly. 15 minutes later, the psychologists measured saliva testosterone again and found that the levels had spiked in men who had handled the gun but had stayed steady in those working with the board game.

The "taste sensitivity" phase of the experiment was in fact intended to measure aggressive impulses. After the writing assignment, the young men were asked to rate the taste of a drink, a cup of water with a drop of hot sauce in it. They were then told to prepare a drink for the next person in the experiment, adding as much hot sauce as they liked. "Those who had handled the gun put in about three times as much as the others — 13 grams on average, which is a lot," said Tim Kasser, one of the authors. He worked with Francis McAndrew, also of Knox, and Jennifer Klinesmith, a former student who had the idea for the study, due to appear in Psychological Science.

Critics of research linking guns to aggressiveness have argued that people who handle guns in experiments tend to act out or think violent thoughts simply because they sense the expectations of the experimenters. The same could be true of this study: the students might have perceived the nature of the study, consciously or not, and acted differently. Yet the aggression was not entirely psychological: the higher the peaks in testosterone, the more hot sauce the students dumped into the drink. And once they learned the real aims of the study, several were disappointed that their cocktails would not be served to a fellow student.
Title: Re: tastes like musk btw
Post by: pruritis on November 07, 2006, 06:36:46 PM

They then seated the young men, one at a time, at a table in a bare room; on the table were pieces of paper and either the board game Mouse Trap or a large handgun. Their instructions: take apart the game or the gun and write directions for assembly and disassembly. 15 minutes later, the psychologists measured saliva testosterone again and found that the levels had spiked in men who had handled the gun but had stayed steady in those working with the board game.


So basically if you want to raise testo levels you've to handle a gun ?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: vicsecret on November 18, 2006, 09:22:27 PM


Wilhelm Reich, like Freud, was a medical doctor. At first he had been interested in the physiology of sex but then, under Freud's influence, became interested in its psychology as well. But he always retained an interest in physiology and was the one of Freud's followers who took the most seriously Freud's hypothesis that there existed a material energy form called "libido" or "instinctual sexual energy" and set about trying to find it.

His break with Freud did not come over this, but over politics. Freud was an ordinary defender of liberal capitalism and wanted to keep his theories as essentially a clinical cure for certain forms of mental illness. Reich didn't agree. He felt that a free society could exist if people in general were taught to take a rational attitude to sex. This led him in 1927 to join the Communist Party, from which he was to be expelled in 1933. Reich offered an explanation as to why fascism had developed: sexual repression in early childhood. According to him, the particular form of sexual repression and family life practised in pre-Nazi Germany led to people, including workers, coming to have an authoritarian personality which inclined them to follow and be dependent on leaders, who represented the patriarchal father-figure they had been brought up to believe in and which, as a result, they had a psychological need for.


Wilhelm Reich has been incredibly misunderstood and maligned, and almost everything he has written has been misinterpreted. Particularly is this true of his sexual theories. The usual distortion is that he advocated "free" sexual expression -- "obey that impulse" -- amounting to a wild and frantic promiscuity ever seeking a mystical, ecstatic orgasm that is supposed to cure all neuroses and even physical ills. This could, presumably, be accomplished by sufficient practice and knowledge, and it would free everyone of his inhibitions and repressions. In order to achieve this end and, incidentally, to satisfy their own countertransference needs, Reich and his followers were said to masturbate their patients and to have sexual relations with them. (It was never explicitly stated whether homosexual relations were included; if not, then half of the patients must have felt neglected.) In any event, they conjured up an exceptional sexual prowess and lack of discrimination on the part of Reich and his followers. This distortion, of course, came from the sex-starved neurotic longing of some of the reviewers and readers of orgonomic literature, and surprisingly, even more from those who knew nothing of Reich and his writ-ings. It was not based on anything Reich ever wrote or practiced.

Freud believed that culture and instinct were antithetical and that the baby was born with both libidinal and destructive drives. He believed, thus, that the destructive drive legitimately required repression for an orderly society and that, in the last analysis, society was correct in imposing such restrictions -- otherwise, there would be chaos. Reich believed that the baby was born without destructive drives and with only the primary 11-bidinal (love) drive, and that he was capable of regulating himself if allowed to function naturally. He believed that the destructive drives were a result of the repression of the libido, which then built up tension and pressure that could express themselves only forcefully and brutally. In this view, society is wrong in restricting the natural drives of the child, for it thus forces on him irrational and neurotic behavior.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: margate on November 18, 2006, 10:35:32 PM

[...] 11-bidinal [...]


??
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: exe on November 23, 2006, 06:41:50 PM
I guess it's libidinal.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: bangbang on November 23, 2006, 07:48:21 PM

Quote
America celebrates stupidity in order to help people ignore the dissonance between their belief that America is a democratic nation with civil rights and the fact that it is an Orwellian totalitarian state derived from lessons learned in the "great experiments" of Fascism and Stalinism.


US stinks and is a dirty country.

Roman empire collapsed,
Ottoman empire collapsed,
Soviet empire collapsed and
American empire will collapse and the first signs are visible everywhere.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: rosebud on December 07, 2006, 08:08:13 PM

US stinks and is a dirty country.

Roman empire collapsed,
Ottoman empire collapsed,
Soviet empire collapsed and
American empire will collapse and the first signs are visible everywhere.


During the antiwar protest days (Iraq) there were banners saying "Rome fell" to get this message across.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: morales on February 08, 2007, 01:16:20 AM
bump
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: vercingetorix on February 08, 2007, 11:38:38 AM
this kills me, i mean this really slays me...i wonder if grandma and grandpa joad who moved out west with one live chicken and some watermelon seeds would be sympathetic.  we are becoming an effete society of complainers.  how will we match the sino-indian challenge to american predominance? tens of millions of these people would happily take your posh little life in law school.  move over.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: mgd83 on April 19, 2007, 02:48:11 AM
this kills me, i mean this really slays me...i wonder if grandma and grandpa joad who moved out west with one live chicken and some watermelon seeds would be sympathetic.  we are becoming an effete society of complainers.  how will we match the sino-indian challenge to american predominance? tens of millions of these people would happily take your posh little life in law school.  move over.

I don't agree with that assessment at all. Our society has changed since the time of the Joads, believe it or not. We have 45 million people in the country without health insurance, real wages have either stagnated or declined over the last 30 years, Americans have no job security, work longer hours than workers in other industrialized countries for the same or less money. Those who actually do have health care pay a ****load for it, so the insurance companies can pay for enormous overhead expenses like advertising.

In addition, we are all atomized and isolated from one another, and there is no sense of community or connection with other people. Due to our very limited social safety net, people are constantly anxious of falling through the cracks. Stop worrying about "Sino-Indian predominance" and start working to fix a sick society, ruled by a corporate- owned government that couldn't care less about the American people. A society dominated strictly by capitalist values can ONLY be sick. We need to find new values to live by, and rediscover a spirituality other than the traditional "God, Guns and Gays" mantra of the right. Read "The Affluent Socety' by John Kenneth Galbraith, or "The Soul of Capitalism by William Greider" for more information.

Americans are doped up on meds because they feel anxious about the isecurity of their place in society. The pervasive fear of falling through the cracks underlies all kinds of perceived mental illnesses.

Someone said people who take drugs are lazy and unmotivated. That's interesting, because some of the most creative and driven people I know have taken drugs at some point in their lives (van gogh, the beatles, and a milion other artists and intellectuals who will go down as the most intelligent and artistic in human history).

Stop passing judgments about people because they take certain medications to alleviate their real or perceived problems. Who are you to call someone lazy for taking meds? Have you been in their shoes? Have you experienced everything someone who takes meds has experienced in their life? If not, shut up with your "holier than thou" attitude. If you can live your life without taking drugs, great for you. Congratulations on your marvelous accomplisment. You can put it on your tombstone that you lived your life without taking psychoactive substances. You will surely go down in the annals of history for your considerable personal strength and great moral integrity.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: loanee on May 09, 2007, 09:23:28 PM

A letter to the editor of a small, upstate-New York newspaper, written in 1992 by an American GI after his return from service in the gulf war is disclosed. This person complained that the legacy of the American middle class had been stolen by an indifferent government. The American dream -- he wrote -- has all but disappeared; instead, most people are struggling just to buy next week's groceries. That letter writer was Timothy McVeigh from Lockport, N.Y. 2 years later, he blew up the Murrah federal building in Oklahoma City in what is now the second-worst act of terrorism ever committed on American soil.

As one issue of The Truth at Last, a white-supremacist magazine, put it: "Immigrants are flooding into our nation willing to work for the minimum wage (or less). Super-rich corporate executives are flying all over the world in search of cheaper and cheaper labor so that they can lay off their American employees. . .Many young White families have no future! They are not going to receive any appreciable wage increases due to job competition from immigrants." hat they want, says one member, is to "take back what is rightfully ours." Their anger often fixes on "others" -- women, members of minority groups, immigrants, gay men, and lesbians -- in part because those are the people with whom they compete for entry-level, minimum-wage jobs. Above them all, enjoying the view, hovers the international Jewish conspiracy.

A RHETORIC OF MASCULINITY is what holds together these racist/sexist/homophobic "paranoid politics". In their quest for power these men consider themselves to be emasculated by big money and big government -- they call the government "the Nanny State" -- and they claim that "others" have been handed the birthright of native-born white men. In the eyes of such downwardly mobile white men, most white American males collude in their own emasculation. They've grown soft, feminized, weak. White supremacists' websites abound with complaints about the "whimpering collapse of the blond male"; the "legions of sissies and weaklings, of flabby, limp-wristed, nonaggressive, non-physical, indecisive, slack-jawed, fearful males who, while still heterosexual in theory and practice, have not even a vestige of the old macho spirit."

White supremacists thus offer men the restoration of their masculinity -- a manhood in which individual white men control the fruits of their own labor and are not subject to emasculation by finance capital or a black-and feminist-controlled welfare state. Theirs is the militarized manhood of the heroic John Rambo, a manhood that celebrates their God-sanctioned right to band together in armed militias if anyone, or any government agency, tries to take it away from them. If the state and the economy emasculate them, and if the masculinity of the "others" is problematic, then only "real" white men can rescue America from a feminized, multicultural, androgynous melting pot.

Already sounded familiar? Central to this political ideology is the recovery of manhood from the emasculating politics of globalization.

Remasculinizing men and refeminizing women.

For instance, many of Hitler's policies -- such as the killing of longtime colleague and avowed homosexual Ernst Rohm, or even the systematic persecution and execution of gay men in concentration camps -- were, in fact, prompted by a desire to conceal his own homosexuality. But what do such accusations actually explain? Do revelations about Hitler's possible gay propensities raise troubling connections between homosexuality and mass murder?

They do address the consequences of homophobia, at least -- both official and informal homophobia -- on young men who are exploring their sexual identities. What's relevant is not the possible fact of Hitler's gayness, but the shame and fear that surround homosexuality in societies that refuse to acknowledge sexual diversity. What is interesting about Hitler is not their repressed sexual orientation but gender -- their masculinity, their sense of masculine entitlement, and their thwarted ambitions. They accepted cultural definitions of masculinity, and needed someone to blame when they felt that they failed to measure up. (After all, being called a mama's boy, and told to toughen up are demands for gender conformity, not matters of sexual desire.)


Tagging for the other thread.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: 9 on May 22, 2007, 03:51:33 AM

America celebrates stupidity in order to help people ignore the dissonance between their belief that America is a democratic nation with civil rights and the fact that it is an Orwellian totalitarian state derived from lessons learned in the "great experiments" of Fascism and Stalinism.


Monumental statement, I'd say!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: LegalMatters on May 24, 2007, 10:03:17 AM
Oh come on, we've all heard that ignorance is bliss. ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: solicitor on May 26, 2007, 03:53:54 AM

Oh come on, we've all heard that ignorance is bliss. ;)


Yes, in Rome's days of luxury! ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ziggy on May 28, 2007, 05:22:55 AM

Quote
... "society of spectacle," a world of manufactured desires and manipulated emotions ...

os6ama is the answer


You mean the solution is gonna come from outside, since capitalism represses the population in their own countries so bad that they are completely helpless?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: signaturebear on June 19, 2007, 05:34:47 PM

America celebrates stupidity in order to help people ignore the dissonance between their belief that America is a democratic nation with civil rights and the fact that it is an Orwellian totalitarian state derived from lessons learned in the "great experiments" of Fascism and Stalinism. Popular culture celebrates stupidity as an end in itself and as a road to happiness. Recent examples are by no means limited to Forrest Gump, South Park, Jackass, George W. Bush, and the WWE. They only expand an older tradition of "aw shucks" ignorance. Before, the awshucks had to be combined with an audacious, aggressive optimism; now it is best when combined with ruthless brutality and a psychotic sense of humor. While the psychopathic ravings of a rapper are considered entertaining, the re-enslaving of African Americans in the prison-industrial complex is justified in the white mind by the very same lyrics. Popular culture serves up rebellion to the masses in such a way that when and if they finally act out against the state that makes them miserable their very act of rebellion finally supports that state. The belief that popular culture produces what the masses want is one of the beliefs that supports the fascist structure and promotes isolation among those who reject its pabulum.


As Hitler's propagandist Joseph Goebbles stated, "a lie told often enough eventually becomes the truth." Is the truth much closer to this statement: "Proponents of military action against Iraq are as misguided as the appeasers who refused to stand up to Adolph Hitler in the 1930s." Can those of you who remember the history of 1930s Germany see the parallels to our current times? Are we witnessing the rapid Nazification of America?

The German leadership in the later 1930s thought it was quite appropriate to invade other countries to get what Germany wanted. The Bush regime's plan to invade Iraq by force, impose a regime change and make Iraq's oil safe for western corporations seems to be a rather Hitlerian mindset. How can otherwise sane people be convinced that invading another country is a good idea? The German people were whipped into a frenzy of support for Hitler and the Nazis by systematic programming. A media blitz from the Nazi propaganda machine fomented a blind pro-Aryan patriotic pride.

What is the difference today? During World War II, the U.S. government realized the value of propaganda. Beginning in the late 1940s, U.S. Military Intelligence and the various clandestine agencies that eventually formed the CIA, gave millions of dollars in research grants to American universities for the research and development of propaganda techniques. Joseph Goebble's societal mind controlling propaganda machine came to America under Project Paperclip and was transformed into an academic genre that is now euphemistically known as the "science of communications." The result? Every journalism student is trained in this now exact science. Polished to a fine art and potentized by modern technology, our minds are pumped on every channel, bandwidth and frequency, 24/7. There's no room left for independent thinking. Our thoughts are provided for us, so slick and conveniently, that the average American doesn't even know what hit 'em.

Mental conformity is accomplished with up-to-the-minute news pumps. Room for alternatives or debate? Only if its going in the direction the doctors of spin have prescribed for us. Just as in Hitler's time, we've been whipped into a frenzy of blind pro-American patriotic pride.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: piece of america on June 19, 2007, 10:32:50 PM

Joseph Goebble\'s societal mind controlling propaganda machine came to America under Project Paperclip and was transformed into an academic genre that is now euphemistically known as the \"science of communications.\" The result? Every journalism student is trained in this now exact science.


Could you expand a bit?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: mas on June 23, 2007, 05:44:58 PM

Joseph Goebble's societal mind controlling propaganda machine came to America under Project Paperclip and was transformed into an academic genre that is now euphemistically known as the "science of communications." The result? Every journalism student is trained in this now exact science.


Could you expand a bit?


Indeed, piece, me too would be very interested to know more on the issue,
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: 6flags on July 05, 2007, 08:49:55 PM

America celebrates stupidity in order to help people ignore the dissonance between their belief that America is a democratic nation with civil rights and the fact that it is an Orwellian totalitarian state derived from lessons learned in the "great experiments" of Fascism and Stalinism. Popular culture celebrates stupidity as an end in itself and as a road to happiness. Recent examples are by no means limited to Forrest Gump, South Park, Jackass, George W. Bush, and the WWE. They only expand an older tradition of "aw shucks" ignorance. Before, the awshucks had to be combined with an audacious, aggressive optimism; now it is best when combined with ruthless brutality and a psychotic sense of humor. While the psychopathic ravings of a rapper are considered entertaining, the re-enslaving of African Americans in the prison-industrial complex is justified in the white mind by the very same lyrics. Popular culture serves up rebellion to the masses in such a way that when and if they finally act out against the state that makes them miserable their very act of rebellion finally supports that state. The belief that popular culture produces what the masses want is one of the beliefs that supports the fascist structure and promotes isolation among those who reject its pabulum.


As Hitler's propagandist Joseph Goebbles stated, "a lie told often enough eventually becomes the truth." Is the truth much closer to this statement: "Proponents of military action against Iraq are as misguided as the appeasers who refused to stand up to Adolph Hitler in the 1930s." Can those of you who remember the history of 1930s Germany see the parallels to our current times? Are we witnessing the rapid Nazification of America?

The German leadership in the later 1930s thought it was quite appropriate to invade other countries to get what Germany wanted. The Bush regime's plan to invade Iraq by force, impose a regime change and make Iraq's oil safe for western corporations seems to be a rather Hitlerian mindset. How can otherwise sane people be convinced that invading another country is a good idea? The German people were whipped into a frenzy of support for Hitler and the Nazis by systematic programming. A media blitz from the Nazi propaganda machine fomented a blind pro-Aryan patriotic pride.

What is the difference today? During World War II, the U.S. government realized the value of propaganda. Beginning in the late 1940s, U.S. Military Intelligence and the various clandestine agencies that eventually formed the CIA, gave millions of dollars in research grants to American universities for the research and development of propaganda techniques. Joseph Goebble's societal mind controlling propaganda machine came to America under Project Paperclip and was transformed into an academic genre that is now euphemistically known as the "science of communications." The result? Every journalism student is trained in this now exact science. Polished to a fine art and potentized by modern technology, our minds are pumped on every channel, bandwidth and frequency, 24/7. There's no room left for independent thinking. Our thoughts are provided for us, so slick and conveniently, that the average American doesn't even know what hit 'em.

Mental conformity is accomplished with up-to-the-minute news pumps. Room for alternatives or debate? Only if its going in the direction the doctors of spin have prescribed for us. Just as in Hitler's time, we've been whipped into a frenzy of blind pro-American patriotic pride.


Couldn't say it better than Rosie does

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3bWB8ATKyM&mode=related&search=
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: so basically on July 15, 2007, 05:44:16 AM

Quote
... "society of spectacle," a world of manufactured desires and manipulated emotions ...

os6ama is the answer


You mean the solution is gonna come from outside, since capitalism represses the population in their own countries so bad that they are completely helpless?


This was Marx's hunch on the issue..
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: genesis on July 15, 2007, 03:34:19 PM


You mean the solution is gonna come from outside, since capitalism represses the population in their own countries so bad that they are completely helpless?


This was Marx's hunch on the issue..


Can capitalism survive? No, I do not think it can.

However, while Marx foresaw capitalism's demise from outside forces (such as a proletariat rising in opposition) I think the success of capitalism will produce a type of corporation and fostering of values hostile to capitalism. This hostility will be especially strong among intellectuals who will make a living attacking the system of private property, capital and entrepreneurial freedom necessary for capitalism.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: abimopectore on July 17, 2007, 09:11:03 PM
Herbert Marcuse analyzed the integration of the industrial working class into capitalist society and new forms of capitalist stabilization and questioned the Marxian postulates of the revolutionary proletariat and inevitability of capitalist crisis. He was concerned about the decline of revolutionary potential in the West. The "advanced industrial society" has created false needs, which integrated individuals into the existing system of production and consumption via mass media, advertising, industrial management, and contemporary modes of thought. This results in a "one-dimensional" universe of thought and behavior in which aptitude and ability for critical thought and oppositional behavior wither away. Against this prevailing climate, Marcuse promotes the "great refusal" as the only adequate opposition to all-encompassing methods of control.

In contrast to orthodox Marxism, Marcuse championed non-integrated forces of minorities, outsiders, and radical intelligentsia, attempting to nourish oppositional thought and behavior through promoting radical thinking and opposition.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: fire on July 20, 2007, 01:23:48 AM
Very thoughtful posts on this thread, I feel the need to connect them to some other ones.
Title: Re: Sadomasochistic personality
Post by: one shoe on July 23, 2007, 01:13:17 AM

[...]

Fromm believed that people live in bipolar societies. His characterizations of the individuals within a society might be anthropomorphically ascribed to sheep and wolves, with the wolves lined up on a spectrum of power lust or madness, from a category of good to bad. Sheep could be classified in categories from acquiescent to willing. All (sheep and wolves), according to Fromm's theory, are motivated by feelings of insecurity, alienation, powerlessness, isolation, and fear. Fromm's contention was that:

[...]


In English, "a wolf in sheep's clothing" has become a common metaphor for any hidden danger, or for any enemy putting on a false display of friendship. As a result, the phrase "a sheep in wolf's clothing" has also become used, ironically, for something or someone harmless who blusters or tries to appear menacing..
Title: Aesop's "The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing"
Post by: Thomas Dunn on July 23, 2007, 04:25:08 AM
Well, according to the fable, the hungry wolf came upon the sheep's fleece lying on the ground in a field. The wolf realized that if it wore the fleece, it would look like a sheep from a distance. That would enable to sneak up on a flock of sheep and steal a lamb for supper, before the shepherd noticed his presence.

The wolf put on the fleece and went off in search of a flock of sheep. It spied a flock of sheep just as the sun was setting, and approached the flock. Just as it was about to pounce on a lamb, the shepherd came by, looking for a sheep to slaughter for supper. Thinking the disguised wolf was a sheep, the shepherd quickly grabbed and killed the wolf.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: c a u s u a l on July 24, 2007, 06:37:28 AM

[...] Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. [...]


It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, but he did not do anybody himself; Hitler, on the other hand, is known to have killed with his own hand.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: agape on July 30, 2007, 03:16:28 PM

In telling Freud about their early youth, particularly before puberty, people who have afterwards often become very respectable have informed him of forbidden actions which they committed at that time. Analytic work brought the surprising discovery that such deeds were done principally because they were forbidden, and because their execution was accompanied by mental relief for their doer. His sense of guilt was at least attached to something. These people might be described as criminals from a sense of guilt. The criminal has done wrong in order to make sense of "an oppressive feeling of guilt of which he did not know the origin" (See Freud's "Criminals from a sense of guilt," 1916)


Quite intriguing, where specifically can we find it? 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: bermuda on July 30, 2007, 07:32:42 PM

Very thoughtful posts on this thread, I feel the need to connect them to some other ones.


They've scattered them all over, systematization is really needed.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: knicks33 on August 02, 2007, 06:29:02 PM
I haven't read through the entire thread, so my points may be redundant.

If you saw my original thread, I gave you my background as a student. I attend a school in the 18-25 range, have poor grades. (Estimate: 29-35 percentile), and am strongly considering leaving school altogether. I agree with the OP that law school places emphasis on extrinsic factors only. The schools also value some students much more than others.

At my school it is known that the vast amount of money the Career Services Department receive is dedicated to helping students in the top 20% get jobs. For the rest of us they suggest cold calling people for jobs.

At my externship, I saw how what firm you worked at or what school you attended automatically affected how you were viewed as a lawyer. 

If a potential student reads this, I would state that law schools place students in a hierarchy, and students themselves begin to view themselves solely in terms of their rank (Grades, Job, and Journal are the only things that matter). The idea of being a lawyer is still desirable to me and something I would like to do, but the negatives that go along with this career do exist. You will be judged based on the grades you get, which determine the job you will receive, and you in turn begin doing this to others

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: aver on August 10, 2007, 10:24:50 PM


Wilhelm Reich, like Freud, was a medical doctor. At first he had been interested in the physiology of sex but then, under Freud's influence, became interested in its psychology as well. But he always retained an interest in physiology and was the one of Freud's followers who took the most seriously Freud's hypothesis that there existed a material energy form called "libido" or "instinctual sexual energy" and set about trying to find it.

His break with Freud did not come over this, but over politics. Freud was an ordinary defender of liberal capitalism and wanted to keep his theories as essentially a clinical cure for certain forms of mental illness. Reich didn't agree. He felt that a free society could exist if people in general were taught to take a rational attitude to sex. This led him in 1927 to join the Communist Party, from which he was to be expelled in 1933. Reich offered an explanation as to why fascism had developed: sexual repression in early childhood. According to him, the particular form of sexual repression and family life practised in pre-Nazi Germany led to people, including workers, coming to have an authoritarian personality which inclined them to follow and be dependent on leaders, who represented the patriarchal father-figure they had been brought up to believe in and which, as a result, they had a psychological need for.


Wilhelm Reich has been incredibly misunderstood and maligned, and almost everything he has written has been misinterpreted. Particularly is this true of his sexual theories. The usual distortion is that he advocated "free" sexual expression -- "obey that impulse" -- amounting to a wild and frantic promiscuity ever seeking a mystical, ecstatic orgasm that is supposed to cure all neuroses and even physical ills. This could, presumably, be accomplished by sufficient practice and knowledge, and it would free everyone of his inhibitions and repressions. In order to achieve this end and, incidentally, to satisfy their own countertransference needs, Reich and his followers were said to masturbate their patients and to have sexual relations with them. (It was never explicitly stated whether homosexual relations were included; if not, then half of the patients must have felt neglected.) In any event, they conjured up an exceptional sexual prowess and lack of discrimination on the part of Reich and his followers. This distortion, of course, came from the sex-starved neurotic longing of some of the reviewers and readers of orgonomic literature, and surprisingly, even more from those who knew nothing of Reich and his writ-ings. It was not based on anything Reich ever wrote or practiced.

Freud believed that culture and instinct were antithetical and that the baby was born with both libidinal and destructive drives. He believed, thus, that the destructive drive legitimately required repression for an orderly society and that, in the last analysis, society was correct in imposing such restrictions -- otherwise, there would be chaos. Reich believed that the baby was born without destructive drives and with only the primary 11-bidinal (love) drive, and that he was capable of regulating himself if allowed to function naturally. He believed that the destructive drives were a result of the repression of the libido, which then built up tension and pressure that could express themselves only forcefully and brutally. In this view, society is wrong in restricting the natural drives of the child, for it thus forces on him irrational and neurotic behavior.


Reich has also made a perfect analyses of the psychological processes involved in the reproduction of authoritarian civilization.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: escheat on August 12, 2007, 12:11:41 AM

[...] Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. [...]


It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, but he did not do anybody himself; Hitler, on the other hand, is known to have killed with his own hand.


Mussolini is something of a tragi-comic figure in world history. He is overshadowed by Hitler, Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt and remains as more of a footnote in the history of WWII. From the moment he had been overthrown in July 1943, arrested, then rescued by the Germans and forced by Hitler to take up the reins of government once again by setting up the Salo Republic, Mussolini had been a miserable figure in the grip of anger, shame and depression. The Germans had lost faith in him and humiliated him almost daily, denying him any real exercise of power, brutalizing and even enslaving his people and stealing his country's assets. By the time he was freed by the Germans from captivity there was no real role for him to play. He was despised by his own people and seen as a joke to almost everyone.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: wesclark on August 12, 2007, 01:02:18 AM

[...] Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. [...]


It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, but he did not do anybody himself; Hitler, on the other hand, is known to have killed with his own hand.


Mussolini is something of a tragi-comic figure in world history. He is overshadowed by Hitler, Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt and remains as more of a footnote in the history of WWII. From the moment he had been overthrown in July 1943, arrested, then rescued by the Germans and forced by Hitler to take up the reins of government once again by setting up the Salo Republic, Mussolini had been a miserable figure in the grip of anger, shame and depression. The Germans had lost faith in him and humiliated him almost daily, denying him any real exercise of power, brutalizing and even enslaving his people and stealing his country's assets. By the time he was freed by the Germans from captivity there was no real role for him to play. He was despised by his own people and seen as a joke to almost everyone.

Sounds like LS.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: largess on August 24, 2007, 05:39:00 AM

Quote
4) Thinking "like a lawyer": Defining people primarily according to their legal rights, and trying to understand, prevent and resolve problems by applying legal rules to those rights, usually in a zero-sum manner. This involves close inspection of words and writing to look for defects in an adversary's position or which may create future problems for a client. It is fundamentally negative, critical, pessimistic, and depersonalizing. This method of thinking is conveyed and understood in law schools as a new and superior way of thinking, not a strictly limited legal tool.

We call it thinking "like an ass".


lol ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: PI on September 24, 2007, 01:49:36 AM


But almost always, during the initial stage of the struggle, the oppressed, instead of striving for liberation, tend themselves to become oppressors, or "sub-oppressors." The very structure of their thought has been conditioned by the contradictions of the concrete, existential situation by which they were shaped. Their ideal is to be men; but for them, to be men is to be oppressors. This is their model of humanity. This phenomenon derives from the fact that the oppressed, at a certain moment of their existential experience, adopt an attitude of "adhesion" to the oppressor. Under these circumstances they cannot "consider" him sufficiently clearly to objectivize him -- to discover him "outside" themselves. This does not necessarily mean that the oppressed are unaware that they are downtrodden. But their perception of themselves as oppressed is impaired by their submersion in the reality of oppression. At this level, their perception of themselves as opposites of the oppressor does not yet signify engagement un a struggle to overcome the contradiction; the one pole aspires not to liberation, but to identification with its opposite pole.
 

Projective Identification is a psychological term first introduced by Melanie Klein of the Object relations school of psychoanalytic thought in 1946. It refers to a psychological process in which one person projects a thought, belief or emotion to a second person. Then, in most common definitions of projective identification, there is another action in which the second person is changed by the projection and begins to behave as though he or she is in fact actually characterized by those thoughts or beliefs that have been projected. This is a process that generally happens outside of the awareness of both parties involved, although this has been a matter of some argument. What is projected is most often an intolerable, painful, or dangerous idea or belief about the self that the first person cannot accept (i.e. "I have behaved wrongly" or "I have a sexual feeling towards ...." ) Or it may be a valued or esteemed idea that again is difficult for the first person to acknowledge. Projective identification is believed to be a very early or primitive psychological process and is understood to be one of the more primitive defense mechanisms. Yet it is also thought to be the basis out of which more mature psychological processes like empathy and intuition are formed.

Many authors have described the mechanism of projective identification. Ogden (1979, 1986) describes a process in which part of the self is projected onto an external object. The external object (the second person) experiences a blurring of the boundaries or definitions of the self and other. This takes place during an interpersonal interaction in which the projector (the first person) actively pressures the recipient to think, feel and act in accordance with the projection. The recipient of the projection then processes or "metabolizes" (mirrors or explains) the projection so that it can then be re-internalized (re-experienced and understood) by the projector (see example). Different definitions of projective identification exist and there are disagreements as to a number of its aspects, for example: where does the process begin and end, exactly what is "projected" and what is "received", is a second person required for projective identification to take place, does projective identification occur when it is within the awareness of either party involved, and what is the difference between projection and projective identification. Young (1994, ch. 7) provides a detailed history and conceptual analysis of these issues.

Ogden (1982) describes the process of projective identification as simultaneously involving a type of psychological defense against unwanted feelings or fantasies, a mode of communication, and as a type of human relationship. As a defense a psychiatric patient, for example, can use PI to deny the truth of unwanted feelings or beliefs by projecting them into the other person. Additionally, because the analyst begins to unknowingly enact these feelings or beliefs (even though they were originally uncharacteristic of him or her), the patient is in a sense "controlling" the interaction with the analyst. This is often experienced by the analyst as a subtle pressure to behave or believe in a particular way; but it is an influence to which the analyst usually is not attentive or which is not experienced consciously. By influencing the analyst's behavior, the patient prevents exploratory, original and vulnerable material from coming into the discussion.

Projective identification functions as a mode of communication as well. The sender "gives" his or her unwanted thoughts or feelings to the receiver. Instead of describing these thoughts or feelings in discussion, the unwanted content is communicated directly or recreated in the receiver by actions, facial expression, bodily attitude, words or sounds, etc. By experiencing it himself, the receiver may understand what the sender is experiencing, even if the sender is unaware of it. Projective identification often occurs not as an isolated incident, but as a series of projections and identifications and counter-projections and counter-identifications that evolve in a relationship over time. An example of this might be the mother/infant dyad or a husband and wife pairing. In such cases there is an ongoing emotional economy or transaction between the partners that takes place over the course of an entire relationship.

Here is a simple example of projective identification in a psychiatric setting: A traumatized patient describes to his analyst a horrible incident which he experienced recently. Yet in describing this incident the patient remains emotionally unaffected or even indifferent to his own obvious suffering and perhaps even the suffering of his loved ones. When asked he denies having any feelings about the event whatsoever. Yet, when the analyst hears this story, she begins to feel very strong feelings (i.e. perhaps sadness and/or anger) in response. She might tear up or become righteously indignant on behalf of the patient, thereby acting out the patient's feelings resulting from the trauma. Being a well-trained analyst however, she recognizes the profound effect that her patient's story is having on her. Acknowledging to herself the feelings she is having, she suggests to the patient that he might perhaps be having feelings that are difficult for him to experience in relation to the trauma. She processes or metabolizes these experiences in herself and puts them into words and speaks them to the patient. Ideally, then the patient can recognize in himself the emotions or thoughts that he previously could not let into his awareness. Another common example is in the mother/child dyad where the mother is able to experience and address her child’s needs when the child is often unable to state his own needs at all. The above examples describe projective identification within the context of a dyad. However, PI takes place within a group context as well. Another notable psychoanalyst Wilfred Bion (1961) described projective identification in the following way: "the analyst feels he is being manipulated so as to be playing a part, no matter how difficult to recognize, in someone else's fantasy" This ongoing link between internal intra-psychic process and the interpersonal dimension has provided the foundation for understanding important aspects of group and organizational life. Bion's studies of groups examined how collusive, shared group phenomena such as scapegoating, group-think and emotional contagion are all rooted in the collective use of projective identification. In fact, sociologists often see projective identification at work on the societal level in the relationship of minority groups and the majority class.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: collige virgo rosas on September 24, 2007, 09:17:07 PM

Projective Identification is a psychological term first introduced by Melanie Klein of the Object relations school of psychoanalytic thought in 1946. It refers to a psychological process in which one person projects a thought, belief or emotion to a second person. Then, in most common definitions of projective identification, there is another action in which the second person is changed by the projection and begins to behave as though he or she is in fact actually characterized by those thoughts or beliefs that have been projected. This is a process that generally happens outside of the awareness of both parties involved, although this has been a matter of some argument. What is projected is most often an intolerable, painful, or dangerous idea or belief about the self that the first person cannot accept (i.e. "I have behaved wrongly" or "I have a sexual feeling towards ...." ) Or it may be a valued or esteemed idea that again is difficult for the first person to acknowledge. Projective identification is believed to be a very early or primitive psychological process and is understood to be one of the more primitive defense mechanisms. Yet it is also thought to be the basis out of which more mature psychological processes like empathy and intuition are formed.

Many authors have described the mechanism of projective identification. Ogden (1979, 1986) describes a process in which part of the self is projected onto an external object. The external object (the second person) experiences a blurring of the boundaries or definitions of the self and other. This takes place during an interpersonal interaction in which the projector (the first person) actively pressures the recipient to think, feel and act in accordance with the projection. The recipient of the projection then processes or "metabolizes" (mirrors or explains) the projection so that it can then be re-internalized (re-experienced and understood) by the projector (see example). Different definitions of projective identification exist and there are disagreements as to a number of its aspects, for example: where does the process begin and end, exactly what is "projected" and what is "received", is a second person required for projective identification to take place, does projective identification occur when it is within the awareness of either party involved, and what is the difference between projection and projective identification. Young (1994, ch. 7) provides a detailed history and conceptual analysis of these issues.

Ogden (1982) describes the process of projective identification as simultaneously involving a type of psychological defense against unwanted feelings or fantasies, a mode of communication, and as a type of human relationship. As a defense a psychiatric patient, for example, can use PI to deny the truth of unwanted feelings or beliefs by projecting them into the other person. Additionally, because the analyst begins to unknowingly enact these feelings or beliefs (even though they were originally uncharacteristic of him or her), the patient is in a sense "controlling" the interaction with the analyst. This is often experienced by the analyst as a subtle pressure to behave or believe in a particular way; but it is an influence to which the analyst usually is not attentive or which is not experienced consciously. By influencing the analyst's behavior, the patient prevents exploratory, original and vulnerable material from coming into the discussion.

Projective identification functions as a mode of communication as well. The sender "gives" his or her unwanted thoughts or feelings to the receiver. Instead of describing these thoughts or feelings in discussion, the unwanted content is communicated directly or recreated in the receiver by actions, facial expression, bodily attitude, words or sounds, etc. By experiencing it himself, the receiver may understand what the sender is experiencing, even if the sender is unaware of it. Projective identification often occurs not as an isolated incident, but as a series of projections and identifications and counter-projections and counter-identifications that evolve in a relationship over time. An example of this might be the mother/infant dyad or a husband and wife pairing. In such cases there is an ongoing emotional economy or transaction between the partners that takes place over the course of an entire relationship.

Here is a simple example of projective identification in a psychiatric setting: A traumatized patient describes to his analyst a horrible incident which he experienced recently. Yet in describing this incident the patient remains emotionally unaffected or even indifferent to his own obvious suffering and perhaps even the suffering of his loved ones. When asked he denies having any feelings about the event whatsoever. Yet, when the analyst hears this story, she begins to feel very strong feelings (i.e. perhaps sadness and/or anger) in response. She might tear up or become righteously indignant on behalf of the patient, thereby acting out the patient's feelings resulting from the trauma. Being a well-trained analyst however, she recognizes the profound effect that her patient's story is having on her. Acknowledging to herself the feelings she is having, she suggests to the patient that he might perhaps be having feelings that are difficult for him to experience in relation to the trauma. She processes or metabolizes these experiences in herself and puts them into words and speaks them to the patient. Ideally, then the patient can recognize in himself the emotions or thoughts that he previously could not let into his awareness. Another common example is in the mother/child dyad where the mother is able to experience and address her child’s needs when the child is often unable to state his own needs at all. The above examples describe projective identification within the context of a dyad. However, PI takes place within a group context as well. Another notable psychoanalyst Wilfred Bion (1961) described projective identification in the following way: "the analyst feels he is being manipulated so as to be playing a part, no matter how difficult to recognize, in someone else's fantasy" This ongoing link between internal intra-psychic process and the interpersonal dimension has provided the foundation for understanding important aspects of group and organizational life. Bion's studies of groups examined how collusive, shared group phenomena such as scapegoating, group-think and emotional contagion are all rooted in the collective use of projective identification. In fact, sociologists often see projective identification at work on the societal level in the relationship of minority groups and the majority class.


A recent enthusiast compared the significance of Klein's 'discovery' of projective identification with the discovery of gravity. It is undoubtedly an important but complex subject. The notion of projection is relatively straightforward. The depressed young man lying on a beach who said 'everyone on this beach looks utterly miserable' was clearly attributing to others his own affective state. We commonly attribute our more difficult and unacceptable feelings to others -- for example, blaming those that are close to us for our own shortcomings. Externalization, the outward limb of projection, allows us to disown responsibility and to feel an illusory sense of mastery over our impulses. If our unwanted impulses and feelings are reflected, like a boomerang, resulting in feeling of being under constant attack, the projection has gone full circle and leads to anxiety, or if extreme, paranoid delusions.

Identification, similarly, refers to the process by which self-representations are built up and modified during development, as distinct from the conscious copying of imitation. As Klein originally conceived it, projective identification combines these two notions in a highly specific way. She described it as a phantasy in which bad parts of the infantile self are split off from the rest of the self and projected into the mother or the breast. As a result, the infant feels that his mother has 'become' the bad parts of himself. The projection is 'into' rather than 'onto' the object -- prototypically the mother or the analyst -- and what is projected is not so much a feeling or an attitude, but the self, or part of it. Klein imagined that in the paranoid-schizoid position the infant might project 'bad' sadistic parts of himself into the mother's body in order to control and injure her from within. If these are then reintrojected -- introjective identification -- the individual contains a bad identificate, a potential source of low self-esteem or self-hatred.

In this original formulation, projective identification was defensive, intrapsychic, and solipsistic, a mental transaction involving the self and a perception, but not the participation of the other. How does then projective identification differ, if at all, from projection? Klein maintained that projection is the mental mechanism underpinning the process, and projective identification is the specific phantasy expressing it. Spillius suggests that it adds depth to Freud's notion of projection by emphasizing that a phantasy of projection is only possible if accompanied by a projection of parts of the self. In contrast, many American writers distinguish projection and projective identification by whether or not the recepient of the projections is emotionally affected or not by the phantasy. If projective identification is seen as an interactive phenomenon, then the recepient of the projection may be induced to feel or act in ways that originate with the projector.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: centripetal on September 25, 2007, 04:52:51 AM

A recent enthusiast compared the significance of Klein's 'discovery' of projective identification with the discovery of gravity. It is undoubtedly an important but complex subject. The notion of projection is relatively straightforward. The depressed young man lying on a beach who said 'everyone on this beach looks utterly miserable' was clearly attributing to others his own affective state. We commonly attribute our more difficult and unacceptable feelings to others -- for example, blaming those that are close to us for our own shortcomings. Externalization, the outward limb of projection, allows us to disown responsibility and to feel an illusory sense of mastery over our impulses. If our unwanted impulses and feelings are reflected, like a boomerang, resulting in feeling of being under constant attack, the projection has gone full circle and leads to anxiety, or if extreme, paranoid delusions.

Identification, similarly, refers to the process by which self-representations are built up and modified during development, as distinct from the conscious copying of imitation. As Klein originally conceived it, projective identification combines these two notions in a highly specific way. She described it as a phantasy in which bad parts of the infantile self are split off from the rest of the self and projected into the mother or the breast. As a result, the infant feels that his mother has 'become' the bad parts of himself. The projection is 'into' rather than 'onto' the object -- prototypically the mother or the analyst -- and what is projected is not so much a feeling or an attitude, but the self, or part of it. Klein imagined that in the paranoid-schizoid position the infant might project 'bad' sadistic parts of himself into the mother's body in order to control and injure her from within. If these are then reintrojected -- introjective identification -- the individual contains a bad identificate, a potential source of low self-esteem or self-hatred.

In this original formulation, projective identification was defensive, intrapsychic, and solipsistic, a mental transaction involving the self and a perception, but not the participation of the other. How does then projective identification differ, if at all, from projection? Klein maintained that projection is the mental mechanism underpinning the process, and projective identification is the specific phantasy expressing it. Spillius suggests that it adds depth to Freud's notion of projection by emphasizing that a phantasy of projection is only possible if accompanied by a projection of parts of the self. In contrast, many American writers distinguish projection and projective identification by whether or not the recepient of the projections is emotionally affected or not by the phantasy. If projective identification is seen as an interactive phenomenon, then the recepient of the projection may be induced to feel or act in ways that originate with the projector.


Not only that, collige, but in terms of feelings experienced by the projector there is a clear difference between the two phenomena. When projective identification is at work, the projector feels at one with the other person. An "I am you" feeling. This is not the case in simple projection. Also, for the receiver, projective identification is far more disturbing and more difficult to deal with than a simple projection.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: carpenoctm on September 25, 2007, 07:27:40 PM

[...] However, PI takes place within a group context as well. Another notable psychoanalyst Wilfred Bion (1961) described projective identification in the following way: "the analyst feels he is being manipulated so as to be playing a part, no matter how difficult to recognize, in someone else's fantasy" This ongoing link between internal intra-psychic process and the interpersonal dimension has provided the foundation for understanding important aspects of group and organizational life. Bion's studies of groups examined how collusive, shared group phenomena such as scapegoating, group-think and emotional contagion are all rooted in the collective use of projective identification. In fact, sociologists often see projective identification at work on the societal level in the relationship of minority groups and the majority class.


It has been described as the basic building block for generating thoughts out of experiences and perceptions. At this same level of generality it is also described as 'the earliest form of empathy' and 'the basis of the earliest form of symbol-formation'. Looking to later developments and more broadly, the related notion of 'container-contained' has been described as 'an attempt to raise the concept of projective identification to a general theory of human functioning -- of the relations between people, and between groups; of the relationships between internal objects; and of the relationships in the symbolic world between thoughts, ideas, theories, experiences, etc.' These are large claims -- very exciting, uplifting, constructive. Yet this same mechanism is seen to be operative at the heart of autism by Meltzer and his co-workers. He also describes it as 'the mechanism of narcissistic identification... and the basis of hypocondria, confusional states, claustrophobia, paranoia, psychotic depression and perhaps some psychosomatic disorders,' as well as the sovereign defence against separation anxiety. Relinquishment of excessive projective identification is described as the precondition of achieving a fully-dimensional inner world. As he says in his essay on 'The Relation of Anal Masturbation to Projective Identification', 'The feeling of fraudulence as an adult person, the sexual impotence or pseudo-potency (excited by secret perverse phantasies), the inner loneliness and the basic confusion between good and bad, all create a life of tension and lack of satisfaction, bolstered, or rather compensated, only by the smugness and snobbery which are an inevitable accompaniment of the massive projective identification.' It has also been described as central to the most social Darwinist forms of ambitious competitive, survivalist conformism, in the concept of 'the claustrum', in which patients use excessive projective identification a desperate defence against schizophrenic breakdown. Projective identification is also the basic mechanism in, sectarianism, virulent nationalism, fanatical religiosity and blind obedience to political and gang leaders.
 
Psychology with public questions in mind. Freud was quite explicit in avowing his belief that all social, cultural and political phenomena were only -- and he did mean only -- the familiar phenomena of id, ego and superego, along with the Oedipal triangle, operating in a new sphere. He even avowed that 'Strictly speaking, there are only two sciences: psychology, pure and applied, and natural science.' There is, according to Freud, no place for truly social explanations; sociology 'cannot be anything but applied psychology.' Now, to revert to the rescue operation. :) The first helpful notion is the Marxist critique of a well-known maxim in political science known as 'Lasswell's Formula' stating that private interests get projected onto the public realm and then represented as the common good. The ruthless economic self-interest of a Rockefeller is defended as generating good for all. He used the analogy of competition among roses leading to the American Beauty Rose, his pretty analogy for Standard Oil recently cosmetically renamed EXXON of Exxon Valdeez oil spill fame. Versions of this maxim have been offered throughout history, for example, in the self-assigned civilising missions of colonialists or imperialists.

Where did the particular conception of private interests come from before they got rationalised as the public good? This is both a familial and an ideological question. It invites us to look at both the psychoanalytic and the socialising process of development. Freud famously pointed out that the child does not acquire the parent's values but the parents' superego. This has an inherently conservative influence on the personality and provides a significant brake on social change. How we acquire values in the family? We are greatly aided in doing so by recent research on the transmission of superego in particularly distressing family histories -- those of holocaust survivors, showing us how direct and coercive these forms of inherited distress are and how they come to be acted out 'unto the seventh generation' -- or at least in the generations to which we have so far had analytic access. What is true of the transmission of trauma in holocaust survivor provides a model for how values get implanted in the process of socialisation and transmitted through the generations.

Psychoanalytic writers of varying degrees of radicalism have essayed about this, basing their own work on attempts to make sense of the rise of Nazism and its aftermath -- the classical writings of the liberal Eric Fromm, the anarchic libertarian Wilhelm Reich, and the libertarian marxist Herbert Marcuse. Whatever one may feel about their respective politics and views on specific theoretical issues in psychoanalysis, these men wrote powerful works on how an epoch's values get into the unconscious value systems of people. We're talking about Fromm's essays when he was in liaison with the Frankfurt School and his book, 'Fear of Freedom' (called 'Escape from Freedom' in America); of Reich's essays collected as Sex-Pol and his masterpiece, 'The Mass Psychology of Fascism'. With respect to Marcuse, his remarkable philosophical investigation into 'Freud, Eros and Civilization', the companion volume in which he mounts a critique of the ideology of industrial capitalism, 'One Dimensional Man' and his essays on how conformist pressures are eroding the role of the father, the superego and the family, collected in 'Five Lectures'. Making due allowance for the consequences of their differing views on how change comes about and how refractory human nature is, they share a psychoanalytic perspective on how we come to conform -- how consent is organised, how hegemony is instanced in the hearts and minds -- the unconscious minds -- of human beings.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: carpenoctm on September 25, 2007, 07:56:37 PM
But they did not delve deeply enough, and this fact brings us back to projective identification by way of Bion and those whose work was inspired by his. We could think of two or three things which might rescue us from experiencing Freud's reductionism as hopelessly ignorant of the importance of social causation. The first is to look deeper and investigative how certain public values and structures get into the unconscious before they get projected and rationalised as the public interest. The second reason for hope is adumbrated in a motto of Freud's: 'If I cannot bend the higher powers, I will stir up the lower depths'. Bion takes us further into the lowest depths -- the most primitive and most refractory defences of all. He put the point clearly in the conclusion to his essay, 'Group Dynamics -- A Re-view', which was more explicit about the Kleinian inspiration of his ideas than his better-known collection of essays, 'Experiences in Groups' Bion says, 'Freud's view of the dynamics of the group seems to me to require supplementing rather than correction'. He accepts Freud's claim that the family group is the basis for all groups but adds that 'this view does not go far enough... I think that the central position in group dynamics is occupied by the more primitive mechanisms which Melanie Klein has described as peculiar to the paranoid-schizoid and depressive positions. In other words, I feel... that it is not simply a matter of the incompleteness of the illumination provided by Freud's discovery of the family group as the prototype of all groups, but the fact that this incompleteness leaves out the source of the main emotional drives of the group'. He then summarises the notions of 'work group' and the 'basic assumptions' that assail them -- 'dependence', 'pairing', 'fight-flight' -- and suggests that these may have a common link or may be different aspects of each other.

In Bion's view, what matters in individual and group behaviour is more primitive than the Freudian level of explanation. The ultimate sources of our distress are psychotic anxieties, and much of what happens in individuals and groups is a result of defences erected against psychotic anxieties, so that we do not have to endure them consciously. Bion says of the group, 'My impression is that the group approximates too closely, in the minds of the individuals composing it, to very primitive phantasies about the contents of the mother's body. The attempt to make a rational investigation of the dynamics of the group is therefore perturbed by fears, and mechanisms for dealing with them, which are characteristic of the paranoid-schizoid position. The investigation cannot be carried out without the stimulation and activation of those levels... the elements of the emotional situation are so closely allied to phantasies of the earliest anxieties that the group is compelled, whenever the pressure of anxiety becomes too great, to take defensive action'. The psychotic anxieties in question involve splitting and projective identification and are characteristic of the paranoid-schizoid and depressive positions, now as group processes. The move from the individual to the group does not raise new issues about explanation. He says a little further on, 'The apparent difference between group psychology and individual psychology is an illusion produced by the fact that the group brings into prominence phenomena which appear alien to an observer unaccustomed to using the group'.

Following on from Bion's experiences in groups, Elliott Jaques and Isabel Menzies Lyth conducted research in various organisations and found the same mechanisms at work, with the defences embodied in the mores and structures of the institutions. I believe that this model is at work in innumerable situations -- neighbourhood gang, school, workplace, country club, religion, racial, political and international conflict. When one comes into contact with the group, subculture or institution, the psychic price of admission is to enter into that group's splits and projective identifications. In her classical paper on 'The Function of Social Systems as a Defence Against Anxiety', Menzies Lyth describes the link as it applies to student nurses: 'Although, following Jaques, I have used the term "social defence system" as a construct to describe certain features of the nursing service as a continuing social institution, I wish to make it clear that I do not imply that the nursing service as an institution operates the defences. Defences are, and can be, operated only by individuals. Their behaviour is the link between their psychic defences and the institution'. There is a complex and subtle interaction, resulting in a matching between the individual's defences and the institution's. The processes 'depend heavily on repeated projection of the psychic defence system into the social defence system and repeated introjection of the social defence system into the psychic defence system. This allows continuous testing of the match and fit as the individual experiences his own and other people's reactions.

'The social defence system of the nursing service has been described as a historical development through collusive interaction between individuals to project and reify relevant elements of their psychic defence systems. However, from the viewpoint of the new entrant to the nursing service, the social defence system at the time of entry is a datum, an aspect of external reality to which she must react and adapt. Fenichel makes a similar point. He states that social institutions arise through the efforts of human beings to satisfy their needs, but that social institutions then become external realities comparatively independent of individuals which affect the structure of the individual'. The student nurse has to adapt her defences to those of the institution. The latter are relatively immutable, so she shapes hers until they are congruent with the institution's. The primitive psychic defences from infancy are brought by the individual to the fraught and literally life-threatening setting of the hospital. 'These defences are oriented to the violent, terrifying situations of infancy, and rely heavily on violent splitting, which dissipates the anxiety. They avoid the experience of anxiety and effectively prevent the individual from confronting it. Thus, the individual cannot bring the content of the phantasy anxiety situations into effective contact with reality. Unrealistic or pathological anxiety cannot be differentiated from realistic anxiety arising from real dangers. Therefore, anxiety tends to remain permanently at a level determined more by the phantasies than by the reality. The forced introjection of the hospital defence system, therefore, perpetuates in the individual a considerable degree of pathological anxiety.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: carpenoctm on September 25, 2007, 07:57:03 PM
The enforced introjection and use of such defences also interferes with the capacity for symbol formation... The defences inhibit the capacity for creative, symbolic thought, for abstract thought, and for conceptualization. They inhibit the full development of the individual's understanding, knowledge and skills that enable reality to be handled effectively and pathological anxiety mastered. Crucial to understand how a person comes to think and feel like a racist or a virulent nationalist or a member of a street gang or a religious or psychoanalytic sect. The mechanisms are the same and that the process of taking in the values as 'a given', adapting one's own primitive anxieties to that group's particular version of splitting, projection, stereotyping and scapegoating, leads to the same kind of impoverishment that nurses experience -- of the ability to think and feel with moderation and to deal with reality and anxiety. It is projected into the structure or the Other and given back -- not detoxified, but -- as an injunction to behave inhumanely toward patients, Lacanians, Jews, Armenians, 'the Evil Empire' or whomsoever. It is by this means that we became certain, without thinking about it or meeting many, if any, of the people involved, that Germans are sadistic, Japanese cunning, Italians sexist, Mexicans lazy, French romantic, English decent, Scots dour, Canadians boring, Swiss efficient, Dutch tidy, Scandinavians cold, Spaniards romantic, Russians passionate, Turks depraved, Arabs fanatical, Jews avaricious, Hawaiians friendly, Australians gauche, Chinese inscrutable, Africans rhythmic, White South Africans racist and authoritarian. We have been sure of all these things all our conscious lives, but we do not recall learning any of them.

We are dealing with a whole new level of grip. It's done with superglue -- cemented or bonded with the most primitive level of feeling that we have. You probably recall a series of sexual jokes. 'Plumbers do it with pipe.' 'Surfers do it with wet suits.' 'Radio hams do it with short waves.' 'Teachers do it with discipline.' 'Psychotherapists do it with insight.' 'Marxists do it with class.' The analogous slogan would be: 'Members do it with projective identification.' Members of families, couples, groups, institutions, tribes, cultures and so on. Work with survivors of catastrophes shows that the trauma acts like a homing device and ransacks or searches out the history of the victim until it finds a congruent, early experience. It latches onto that -- tightly -- and can only be dislodged with the greatest difficulty. Another image is of hungry birds in a nest -- heads vertical, beaks open, cheeping. You may think that they are only craving, but they are also projecting like mad, and what mother thrusts down their throats on her return goes deep. What is true of worms served up as food for birds is also true of people with respect to prejudices and other deeply held beliefs. They become so deeply implanted or sedimented that they are 'second nature'. From the beginning the infant forms some object relationships, predominantly in phantasy. In her view, the outward deflection of the death instinct postulated by Freud creates the fantasy of a deathly bad object... First we project our destructiveness into others; then we wish to annihilate them without guilt because they contain all the evil and destructiveness'. When we read accounts of the genocide of the Conquistadors, the Stalinists, the Germans, the Kampucheans, the Americans or the Iraqis, we must ask what has been projected into these people from the most primitive parts of their tormentors. Similarly, when we see the behaviour of drunken Indians or Esquimos or the fawning of black film actors such as Step'n Fetchit or the behaviour of Mafiosi as represented by Brando, Jews like Dickens' Fagin as played by Alec Guiness or Americans as played by John Wayne -- then we must note how such projections take root and evoke stereotypes.

What are Bion's three basic assumptions which sunder sensible work group functioning -- dependence, pairing, fight-flight -- but projective identifications? What is the mechanism of becoming a follower, as described in Freud's 'Group Psychology' and the 'Analysis of the Ego', except projective identification of desired parts into the leader, who gives back an identity and frees one from the obligation of being responsible for one's own superego? Wolfenstein gives a moving account of this in his writings about the black American revolutionary, Malcolm X and his relationship -- of protégé, heir apparent and then apostate -- with respect to the leader of the Black Muslims, The Honorable Elijah Muhammad. What is being a fan of a movie star or a groupie of a rock star other than romantic, idealising projective identification? Where positive aspects of the self are forcefully projected similar degrees of depersonalization occur, with feelings of personal worthlessness and with dependent worship of the other's contrasting strengths, powers, uncanny sensitivity, marvellous gifts, thoughts, knowledge, undying goodness etc. This is the world of the devotee, cults and hero-promotion. It is also a world in which people will do anything a Bagwan or a Rev. James Jones tells them to do -- from sexual licence to mass suicide. The same suspension of one's own sense of right and wrong is at work in the followers L. Ron Hubbard in the Church of Scientiology as in the helter-skelter minds of the devotees of Charles Manson, killing rich Californians, and in the convictions of bombers and perpetrators of sectarian murders in Northern Ireland or terrorists from Lybia, though the ideologies of the respective group leaders may have utterly different apparent of real justifications.

The 'institution in the mind'. A further group presence in the unconscious is in the notion of 'pathological organisations' in borderline psychotic states, the subject of a burgeoning literature. In discussing this, Herbert Rosenfeld explicitly describes the individual as in projective identification with a 'gang in the mind': 'The destructive narcissism of these patients appears often highly organised, as if one were dealing with a powerful gang dominated by a leader, who control all the members of the gang to see that they support one another in making the criminal destructive work more efficient and powerful. However, the narcissistic organisation not only increases the strength of the destructive narcissism, but it has a defensive purpose to keep itself in power and so maintain the status quo. The main aim seems to be to prevent the weakening of the organisation and to control the members of the gang so that they will not desert the destructive organisation and join the positive parts of the self or betray the secrets of the gang to the police.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: NILA on September 25, 2007, 08:54:55 PM

A recent enthusiast compared the significance of Klein's 'discovery' of projective identification with the discovery of gravity. It is undoubtedly an important but complex subject. The notion of projection is relatively straightforward. The depressed young man lying on a beach who said 'everyone on this beach looks utterly miserable' was clearly attributing to others his own affective state. We commonly attribute our more difficult and unacceptable feelings to others -- for example, blaming those that are close to us for our own shortcomings. Externalization, the outward limb of projection, allows us to disown responsibility and to feel an illusory sense of mastery over our impulses. If our unwanted impulses and feelings are reflected, like a boomerang, resulting in feeling of being under constant attack, the projection has gone full circle and leads to anxiety, or if extreme, paranoid delusions.

Identification, similarly, refers to the process by which self-representations are built up and modified during development, as distinct from the conscious copying of imitation. As Klein originally conceived it, projective identification combines these two notions in a highly specific way. She described it as a phantasy in which bad parts of the infantile self are split off from the rest of the self and projected into the mother or the breast. As a result, the infant feels that his mother has 'become' the bad parts of himself. The projection is 'into' rather than 'onto' the object -- prototypically the mother or the analyst -- and what is projected is not so much a feeling or an attitude, but the self, or part of it. Klein imagined that in the paranoid-schizoid position the infant might project 'bad' sadistic parts of himself into the mother's body in order to control and injure her from within. If these are then reintrojected -- introjective identification -- the individual contains a bad identificate, a potential source of low self-esteem or self-hatred.

In this original formulation, projective identification was defensive, intrapsychic, and solipsistic, a mental transaction involving the self and a perception, but not the participation of the other. How does then projective identification differ, if at all, from projection? Klein maintained that projection is the mental mechanism underpinning the process, and projective identification is the specific phantasy expressing it. Spillius suggests that it adds depth to Freud's notion of projection by emphasizing that a phantasy of projection is only possible if accompanied by a projection of parts of the self. In contrast, many American writers distinguish projection and projective identification by whether or not the recepient of the projections is emotionally affected or not by the phantasy. If projective identification is seen as an interactive phenomenon, then the recepient of the projection may be induced to feel or act in ways that originate with the projector.


Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't projective identification a process in which an individual like in projection deals with emotional conflict or internal/external stressors by falsely attributing to another his or her own unacceptable feelings, impulses, or thoughts, but that unlike simple projection, he does not fully disavow what is projected? That instead, the individual remains aware of his own affects or impulses but misattributes them as justifiable reactions to the other person, with him inducing the very feelings in others that were first mistakenly believed to be there, making it difficult to clarify who did what to whom first?
Title: Syphilis can be mistaken for the Narcissistic and Paranoid Personality Disorders
Post by: Layman on November 16, 2007, 12:39:23 PM

[...]
- syphilis
- syphilis caused by Jewish prostitute
[...]


Don't take the syphilis thing lightly! Syphilis in its tertiary (brain consuming) phase produces symptoms that are easily misdiagnosed as Bipolar Disorder comorbid with Personality Disorders. It is common knowledge that brain disorders, injuries, and traumas are sometimes misdiagnosed as mental health problems. But what about "run of the mill" organic medical conditions? Syphilis provides a fascinating glimpse into the convoluted world of differential diagnoses: the art of telling one form of illness from another. Syphilis is a venereal (sexually transmitted) disease. It has a few stages and involves unpleasant phenomena such as lesions and skin eruptions. Syphilis can go dormant (latent) for years or even decades before it affects the brain in a condition known as general paresis. Brain tissue is gradually destroyed by the tiny organisms that cause syphilis, the spirochetes. This progressive devastation causes mania, dementia, megalomania (delusions of grandeur), and paranoia.

Even when its existence is suspected, syphilis is difficult to diagnose. Most mental health clinicians are unlikely to try to rule it out. Syphilis in its tertiary (brain consuming) phase produces symptoms that are easily misdiagnosed as Bipolar Disorder combined with the Narcissistic and the Paranoid Personality Disorders. Syphilitic patients in the tertiary stage are often described as brutal, suspicious, delusional, moody, irritable, raging, lacking empathy, grandiose, and demanding. They are indecisive and absorbed in irrelevant detail one moment and irresponsibly and manically impulsive the next. They exhibit disorganized thinking, transient false beliefs, mental rigidity, and obsessive-compulsive repetitive behaviors.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: vögel on November 16, 2007, 12:51:25 PM
Hitler had a preoccupation with the purity of blood. This was the foundation of the sterilization law and the euthanasia measures and ultimately of the Final Solution. Indeed, Hitler's use of medical imagery was striking. Depicting himself as physician to the diseased German body politic, Hitler variously portrayed the Jew as a tuberculosis bacillus infecting the German people, a toxin, a parasite, and a cancer. Syphilis, Hitler believed, was a Jewish disease that was "transmitted generationally, and destroyed races, nations, and ultimately mankind."

Hitler did not have any of the major psychoses, as some psychiatrists have suggested. Borderline personality disorder is ruled out as well. There is insufficient evidence of any conventional psychiatric disorder that might explain the extreme nature of Hitler's actions; a "politological" rather than a psychiatric diagnosis should be offered: political paranoia. The most important psychopathology of Hitler were paranoid delusions, particularly the threat of world domination by the Jews. Hitler's dominant ego defense was projection, which regularly interfered with his evaluation of his adversary's intentions. In addition to many paranoid features, narcissistic features are to be emphasized as well: his grandiosity, tenuous personal relationships, sensitivity to criticism, and potential for rage. These two severe personality characteristics — paranoia and narcissism — were joined in his eliminationist anti-Semitism. Hitler is the exemplar of the destructive charismatic who unifies his wounded people by identifying and attacking an enemy.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: CogentCom on November 17, 2007, 08:28:49 AM

[...] a "politological" rather than a psychiatric diagnosis should be offered: political paranoia. The most important psychopathology of Hitler were paranoid delusions, particularly the threat of world domination by the Jews. Hitler's dominant ego defense was projection, which regularly interfered with his evaluation of his adversary's intentions. In addition to many paranoid features, narcissistic features are to be emphasized as well: his grandiosity, tenuous personal relationships, sensitivity to criticism, and potential for rage. These two severe personality characteristics — paranoia and narcissism — were joined in his eliminationist anti-Semitism. Hitler is the exemplar of the destructive charismatic who unifies his wounded people by identifying and attacking an enemy.


I wouldn't call even this "pathology" or something along those lines ... everyone knows that all philosophical systems of thought, or scientific theories, for instance, are like paranoid delusions because they try to make sense of the world and our place in it. More specifically,
Now, leaders who concretize and give meaning to the groups' ideologies form a powerful and intimate connection with the group's shared myths and delusional fantasies. Primitive aspects in groups demonstrate how individuals form intense attachments or identifications with leaders. Groups often form a "trance" or an intense identification with a charismatic leader, who best offers the promise to: (1) play out the group's mythological fantasies, and (2) play out the group's aggression. Aggression is addictive, becomes exciting, people get hooked. Aggression and cruelty reinforces the libidinal ties in groups, as long as there are outsiders into which to project and blame (enemies/scapegoats). When one is vulnerable, one is more inclined to identify, fuse with, or act in complicity with any leader who offers any semblance of bonding. We've already elaborated on this board that group formation involves a process whereby each individual in the group surrenders his own ego-ideal and, through idealization, gives it over to the group leader, similar to an hypnotic trance. Expanding Freud's concept of the ego ideal, Bion realized that tensions evolve as the group assigns itself certain group fantasies. The group fragments, divides into subgroups, pairs-off, or acts overly dependent in order to evacuate painful anxieties (relinquishing all individual thinking to the collective group self).

In his seminal work, Bion highlights two kinds of groups: (1) The work group is a rational-thinking group; members are task/reality oriented, and its primary concern is the achievement of goals; and (2) the basic assumption group is the regressed group whose members function on the basis of blame/shame, fight/flight, and parasitic bonds. Work group members are acknowledged for their creativity, individuality, and rely more on thinking than dogma or group ideology. In the basic assumption group, the inclination is toward irrational, non-thinking process, whose sole purpose is "emotional" survival. Each basic assumption group qualifies a different leader. The pairing "blame/shame" group calls for a savior, messiah like Gandhi. The "fight-flight" group seeks a battle leader like Saddam Hussein. The dependent parasitic group, the most regressed, chooses the most malignant or pathological leader like Hitler or Milosevic. Often these are charismatic leaders, who are paranoid, and/or schizophrenic, and pathologically disturbed. Leaders who play-out these myths, express the group's dysfunctionality, and form a most powerful and intimate connection with the group. Just as individuals can identify with an abusive mate, so can individuals in groups identify with a destructive/sadistic leader. The leader knows how to play on the group's omnipresent fear of imminent danger (real or imagined) from outside forces. In regressive dependency groups, blame, attack, retaliation, getting back at any cost are dominant features. Themes such as "Drive the Jews into the Sea," "Return to the Land of Milk and Honey," "Land for Peace," are familiar themes. When tensions surge, members resort to shame/blame, fight/flight, and scapegoating. The group searches for an enemy for the blame and enemy and a leader/messiah who will save the group from calamity. Leaders who are most likely to survive are the ones who best perpetuate the group's ideologies, mythologies, and collective group fantasies.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Hadrian on November 17, 2007, 10:13:55 AM

[...] Bion realized that tensions evolve as the group assigns itself certain group fantasies. The group fragments, divides into subgroups, pairs-off, or acts overly dependent in order to evacuate painful anxieties (relinquishing all individual thinking to the collective group self).


Very interesting! Here it is a more complete summary of Bion:

Come follow, follow, follow ,follow, follow , follow me!
Whither shall I follow, follow, follow,
Whither shall I follow, follow thee?
To the greenwood, to the greenwood,
To the greenwood, greenwood tree!


In this well-known old song, an English canon composed by John Hilton in 1652, we are encouraged to follow an invisible leader. But before we decide to do so, we ask him "whither shall I follow? Whither shall I follow thee?" The answer sounds tempting: "to the greenwood tree..." So,... off we go!... Or perhaps not?

Bion's Theory of Thinking -- "Container-Contained"

The theory or the "model" at the base of author's reflections is Bion's model "container-contained", also called his "theory of thinking". The relationship between container and contained is central to Bion's thinking seeing it as basic, a ubiquitous pattern of relationships which, as it were, biologically pre-programmed. In other words, it is one of nature's key patterns. It is at one and the same time: the model of conception (penis-in-vagina), gestation (embryo-in-uterus), alimentation (nipple-in-mouth) and elimination (faeces-in-colon). This fundamental pattern -- 'one thing inside another', as Bion simply calls it -- in its many variations and permutations, forms the model for all human somatopsychological experience from the very beginning of life. Bion posits a "place" or an "object", which he calls the "container", whose purpose is to take up a "something" which needs to be contained. Through this process both container and that-which-is-to-be-contained are transformed, and something new, a "third" element comes into being. From this biological pattern, Bion develops his model of the origin of the ability to think, which, for him, is a precondition for his central developmental concept, "learning from experience", which is the process he describes as the mental metabolizing of experiences, perceptions and fantasies, both conscious and unconscious. Bion's starting point is what he refers to as the "proto-mental", the somato-psychic level of experiences, consisting of emotional entities "in the raw", which to he gives the name "beta elements". According to Bion, these bits of raw sense data are, as it were, "looking for", or "in search of" a place where they can grow and be transformed into thoughts, dreams ideas, myths, etc. For in Bion's theory of thinking, (very much along Platonic lines) all thoughts exist a priori to their being actually thought; that is to say, they are simply 'there' in some potential space/time, independent of there being a thinker to think them. Bion's image of thoughts simply being "there" without having found a thinker to think them yet, is reminiscent of Luigi Pirandello's drama "Six Characters in Search of an Author." They, too, these six characters "exist" ostensibly a priori to an author's mind having created them, and their search can be thought of as being analogous to the "searching" of thoughts for a mind, for a thinker to think them.

When these "thoughts without a thinker" find such a "nesting place" in the mind of a "host" (mother, therapist, consultant, supervisor, leader etc.) so to speak, they can then be transformed into so-called "alpha elements" through the state of mind which Bion has named "reverie", and the process which he has called "alpha function." He emphasizes, however, that he neither knows what alpha-function is or how it functions, he just knows that it does! What he does describe in great detail is the indispensable requirement for the successful functioning of this transformation, negative capability. It all depends, he says, on the presence of "negative capability", i.e. the capability to take in without judging and without explanation, the ability just to "be with one's experience", to tolerate uncertainty, mystery and doubt without any "irritable grasping for facts and reason." When the containing object (the psyche of the container) takes up the contained (i.e. the projected, the not-understood, the painful, needy, as yet uncontained, unthinkable beta elements) from the subject, it must be capable of carrying out this metabolic, disentangling process within itself, in order to be able to feed it back to the subject in small, digestible doses, so that it can now be metabolised by the subject and used for mental growth, rather than being simply expelled, "spat out" again as mentally indigestible. Negative capability, which enables the object to "dream" (reverie) upon, to ponder and reflect upon these projected parts, requires a state of mind which Bion calls "patience" and which gradually changes into a state of mind which he calls "certainty" when the "to-be-contained" has been understood, detoxicated and re-presented to the subject. Following Freud's dictum "where Id was, Ego shall be", one could restate Bion's postulate as "where beta elements are, they shall be transformed into alpha-elements", that is to say, transformed into dreamable dreams and thinkable thoughts through the workings of alpha-function. This, then, is the process which, according to Bion, has to take place in every mother, in every therapist, consultant or supervisor, in every leader if he or she has the intention of being helpful to his/her "baby" (patient, client, supervisee, client system, team, staff, organisation, company, nation or people), and to the extent to which the necessity of performing a containing function for those who are to follow his or her lead is both recognised and possible.

Bion's theory of group dynamics, basic assumptions and leadership

It is one of Bion's central tenets of group life, that people who come together to form a group -- regardless of its ostensible purpose -- are basically always and predominantly concerned with the survival of the group as a group as such, no matter what. At the unconscious, "proto-mental" level, group formation takes place in at least three basic forms -- which Bion has dubbed "basic assumptions".

- The whole group remains dependent on a leader for its well-being (basic assumption Dependency -- baD)
- The group chooses a pair whose task it is to create a new "something" (person, idea, structure) which is seen to have a messianic function and makes the group believe that it will thereby be safe from disintegration and destruction (basic assumption Pairing -- baP)
- A kind of group leadership is formed which is seen as guaranteeing the survival of the group by making sure that potential enemies are either fought against or fled from (basic assumption fight/flight – baF)
 
A basic assumption group, instead of orientating itself according to the task at hand and its requirements, instead of tackling them and creating appropriate structures to get the work done, runs the danger of becoming more and more absorbed by the basic assumption structure and its dynamic, clinging to it until the task and its requirements can hardly be discerned, or even disappears completely. The main focus of attention is on maintaining the illusion that the that the group will survive no matter what, and that the fear of its being destroyed or eliminated is being or has been effectively thwarted.

The work group and its leadership

The work group, by comparison, chooses its leadership according to, and is characterised by, a task-oriented relationship to reality and the job to be done, making the capacity to do work and achieve productive results possible. Therefore, one of the main goals of quality leadership is to keep the group functioning in a work group mode as much as possible in every work situation. When a the group manages to do so successfully, the result is apparent immediately. For instance, I am sure you are all familiar with the kind of atmosphere, say, in a kindergarten or pre-school group, where a clear sign that productive and satisfying work is being done can be observed as expressed in that soft background hum of calm activity and a certain sense of satisfaction in the air. Similarly, we all know well the unpleasant feeling of being in a group which is unable to work, although every single member of the group might quite justifiably claim that, as an individual, he or she is trying hard to work effectively. Surely, this means that the group is unconsciously holding on to one of the basic assumptions, and, for whatever reasons, (i.e. rivalry, envy, laziness, fear of the task itself or fear of failing) is not capable of installing and maintaining competent work group leadership, leadership authorised by the group to be effective in getting the group to work at its task.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Hadrian on November 17, 2007, 10:15:15 AM
Fight/Flight mentality and the choice of a leader in the Fight/Flight group

As to the choice of a leader for a fight/flight group, Bion says:

Quote
"It is usually a man or woman with marked paranoid trends; perhaps, if the presence of an enemy is not immediately obvious to the group, the next best thing is for the group to choose a leader to whom it is."
 

This statement is important for several reasons. First, it makes it obvious that, according to Bion, it is not the leader who chooses his group -- neither according to his own needs or his perception of the group's needs -- but much more the basic assumption group which seeks and chooses its appropriate leader according to its (unconscious) needs. And second, the group's need to find an enemy, against whom they can either fight or from which they can flee, exists even before that enemy has been found, discovered or, indeed, invented. In other words, one might say, that if the Jews hadn't been there already for the Nazis to identify as the enemy, responsible for their miserable plight, the Nazis would have had to invent them! And as for the leadership role in this fight/flight dynamic, the German people were highly successful in picking a personality from among their ranks (who was, of course not even a German, but an Austrian!), and whose capacities as a leader of the fight/flight basic assumption have remained virtually unparalleled in history, Adolph Hitler. According to Bion, leadership is a product of the group mentality, not its origin. He writes:

Quote
The leader, on the basic assumption level, does not create the group by virtue of his fanatical adherence to an idea, but is rather an individual whose personality renders him peculiarly susceptible to the obliteration of individuality by the basic group's leadership requirements.

And here Bion links this phenomenon with the Kleinian theory of projective identification:

Quote
To me the leader is as much the creature of the basic assumption as any other member of the group, and this, I think, is to be expected if we envisage identification of the individual with the leader as depending not on introjection alone but on a simultaneous process of projective identification.


This "loss of individual distinctiveness" applies to the leader as much as to anyone else.

Thus the leader in the fight/flight group, for example, appears to have a distinctive personality because his personality is of a kind that lends itself to exploitation by the group demand for a leader who requires of it only a capacity for fighting or for flight; the leader has no greater freedom to be himself than any other member of the group. Bion compares this leader with

Quote
"an automaton who has ceased to be guided by his own will. He is leader by virtue of his capacity for instantaneous, involuntary combination with every other member of his group and only differs from them in that, whatever his function in the work group, he is the incarnation of the basic assumption group leader.


Bion points out that it is incapable of tolerating frustration in the long run, because in the sphere of basic assumption phenomena, time itself is not a relevant, not even an existent dimension of reality. Flight offers an immediately available opportunity for expression of the emotion in the fight/flight group and therefore meets the demand for instantaneous satisfaction -- therefore the group will take flight. Alternatively, attack offers a similarly immediate outlet -- then the group will fight. The fight/flight group will follow any leader who will give such orders as license instantaneous flight or instantaneous attack.

The capacity for "containment" as a prerequisite for good leadership

So, how can Bion's Container-Contained model serve as a model for good leadership in groups? Only a group which feels sufficiently contained will be able to function successfully over a long period of time as a work group. If anxieties, irrationalities, aggressions, envy and rivalry, disruptive unconscious fantasies and ideas, etc. are not adequately contained, they threaten to paralyse the group or to blow it up. If this is the case, then the group will be forced to fall back on functioning in a basic assumption mode in order to prevent such threats and disturbances from destroying the group altogether. The price paid for this is, however, is, of course, the loss of task orientation and with it, the capacity to do work. When, however, the work group leader is capable of offering the group enough containment, these disturbing factors can be "digested", can be better metabolised into the group's dynamic life, and it can then "feed" on this experience, can grow on it, learn from it, and thereby improve its capacity to devote itself to the task at hand and to achieve good results.

Containment as a leadership style -- where does it come from?

How containing the style of the leader and how given to blaming others when things go wrong (paranoid/schizoid position) versus acknowledging one's or one's institution's contribution towards the trouble one is in (depressive position), depends to a very large degree on the individual's capacity to maintain a relatively mature stance as opposed to falling into a defensive/paranoid one, and this capacity is based on early experiences and their later reworking as the life-cycle progresses. The assumption underlying this aspect of psychoanalytic theory suggests that the conditions necessary in order for a proper Container-Contained relationship in the Bionic sense to come into being are:

a) when an individual has him/herself had sufficient experience of containment in the course of his or her personal development, and
b) when s/he has thereby developed a capacity to identify both with the container as well as with "being contained" and then, through the process of introjective identification, has been able to include this as a significant and stable aspect of his or her own internal life.

This developmental process thus enables one to increase one's capacity to contain, and to employ containment of anxiety as a psychic tool, which can then be utilised as necessary in the authoritative execution of leadership roles.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Glee Client on November 20, 2007, 10:38:38 AM

This statement is important for several reasons. First, it makes it obvious that, according to Bion, it is not the leader who chooses his group -- neither according to his own needs or his perception of the group's needs -- but much more the basic assumption group which seeks and chooses its appropriate leader according to its (unconscious) needs.


So basically I don't have to do anything - the group will find me ?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: # on November 20, 2007, 11:45:06 AM

This statement is important for several reasons. First, it makes it obvious that, according to Bion, it is not the leader who chooses his group -- neither according to his own needs or his perception of the group's needs -- but much more the basic assumption group which seeks and chooses its appropriate leader according to its (unconscious) needs.


So basically I don't have to do anything - the group will find me ?


Glee, you are so funny! ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: NeXD on November 20, 2007, 02:33:16 PM
I wasnt depressed until I tried finding a job.  @#!* this *&^%.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: l u s h y on November 22, 2007, 01:51:36 PM

Fight/Flight mentality and the choice of a leader in the Fight/Flight group

As to the choice of a leader for a fight/flight group, Bion says:

Quote
"It is usually a man or woman with marked paranoid trends; perhaps, if the presence of an enemy is not immediately obvious to the group, the next best thing is for the group to choose a leader to whom it is."
 

This statement is important for several reasons. First, it makes it obvious that, according to Bion, it is not the leader who chooses his group -- neither according to his own needs or his perception of the group's needs -- but much more the basic assumption group which seeks and chooses its appropriate leader according to its (unconscious) needs. And second, the group's need to find an enemy, against whom they can either fight or from which they can flee, exists even before that enemy has been found, discovered or, indeed, invented. In other words, one might say, that if the Jews hadn't been there already for the Nazis to identify as the enemy, responsible for their miserable plight, the Nazis would have had to invent them! And as for the leadership role in this fight/flight dynamic, the German people were highly successful in picking a personality from among their ranks (who was, of course not even a German, but an Austrian!), and whose capacities as a leader of the fight/flight basic assumption have remained virtually unparalleled in history, Adolph Hitler. According to Bion, leadership is a product of the group mentality, not its origin. He writes:

Quote
The leader, on the basic assumption level, does not create the group by virtue of his fanatical adherence to an idea, but is rather an individual whose personality renders him peculiarly susceptible to the obliteration of individuality by the basic group's leadership requirements.

And here Bion links this phenomenon with the Kleinian theory of projective identification:

Quote
To me the leader is as much the creature of the basic assumption as any other member of the group, and this, I think, is to be expected if we envisage identification of the individual with the leader as depending not on introjection alone but on a simultaneous process of projective identification.


This "loss of individual distinctiveness" applies to the leader as much as to anyone else.

Thus the leader in the fight/flight group, for example, appears to have a distinctive personality because his personality is of a kind that lends itself to exploitation by the group demand for a leader who requires of it only a capacity for fighting or for flight; the leader has no greater freedom to be himself than any other member of the group. Bion compares this leader with

Quote
"an automaton who has ceased to be guided by his own will. He is leader by virtue of his capacity for instantaneous, involuntary combination with every other member of his group and only differs from them in that, whatever his function in the work group, he is the incarnation of the basic assumption group leader.


Bion points out that it is incapable of tolerating frustration in the long run, because in the sphere of basic assumption phenomena, time itself is not a relevant, not even an existent dimension of reality. Flight offers an immediately available opportunity for expression of the emotion in the fight/flight group and therefore meets the demand for instantaneous satisfaction -- therefore the group will take flight. Alternatively, attack offers a similarly immediate outlet -- then the group will fight. The fight/flight group will follow any leader who will give such orders as license instantaneous flight or instantaneous attack.

The capacity for "containment" as a prerequisite for good leadership

So, how can Bion's Container-Contained model serve as a model for good leadership in groups? Only a group which feels sufficiently contained will be able to function successfully over a long period of time as a work group. If anxieties, irrationalities, aggressions, envy and rivalry, disruptive unconscious fantasies and ideas, etc. are not adequately contained, they threaten to paralyse the group or to blow it up. If this is the case, then the group will be forced to fall back on functioning in a basic assumption mode in order to prevent such threats and disturbances from destroying the group altogether. The price paid for this is, however, is, of course, the loss of task orientation and with it, the capacity to do work. When, however, the work group leader is capable of offering the group enough containment, these disturbing factors can be "digested", can be better metabolised into the group's dynamic life, and it can then "feed" on this experience, can grow on it, learn from it, and thereby improve its capacity to devote itself to the task at hand and to achieve good results.

Containment as a leadership style -- where does it come from?

How containing the style of the leader and how given to blaming others when things go wrong (paranoid/schizoid position) versus acknowledging one's or one's institution's contribution towards the trouble one is in (depressive position), depends to a very large degree on the individual's capacity to maintain a relatively mature stance as opposed to falling into a defensive/paranoid one, and this capacity is based on early experiences and their later reworking as the life-cycle progresses. The assumption underlying this aspect of psychoanalytic theory suggests that the conditions necessary in order for a proper Container-Contained relationship in the Bionic sense to come into being are:

a) when an individual has him/herself had sufficient experience of containment in the course of his or her personal development, and
b) when s/he has thereby developed a capacity to identify both with the container as well as with "being contained" and then, through the process of introjective identification, has been able to include this as a significant and stable aspect of his or her own internal life.

This developmental process thus enables one to increase one's capacity to contain, and to employ containment of anxiety as a psychic tool, which can then be utilised as necessary in the authoritative execution of leadership roles.


Awesome, Hadrian!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Mentorama on November 22, 2007, 01:59:35 PM
Indeed, lushy!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ² on November 24, 2007, 03:33:07 PM

I wouldn't call even this "pathology" or something along those lines ... everyone knows that all philosophical systems of thought, or scientific theories, for instance, are like paranoid delusions because they try to make sense of the world and our place in it. More specifically,


Yes..?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ysa on January 24, 2008, 03:00:39 PM

Wilhelm Reich, like Freud, was a medical doctor. [...]


True, although it took him some 8 years to receive his medical degree :) Then, in 1882, he took a position at the Vienna General Hospital. Over the next 5 years he moved from department to department at the hospital, passing through surgery and dermatology before finally coming to rest at Theodor Meynert's department of psychiatry. Nothing strange, though. After graduating the Matura from Leopoldstädter Communal-Realgymnasium in 1873 he planned to study law. However, he began medical studies at University of Vienna to study under Darwinist Prof. Karl Claus. At that time, eel life history was still unknown, and due to their mysterious origins and migrations, a racist association was often made between eels and Jews and Gypsies. In search for their male sex organs, Freud spent 4 weeks at the Austrian zoological research station in Trieste, dissecting hundreds of eels without finding more than his predecessors such as Simon von Syrski. In 1876, he published his first paper about "the testicles of eels," conceding that he could not solve the matter either. Frustrated by the lack of success that would have gained him fame, Freud chose to change his course of study.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: episio on January 31, 2008, 01:59:08 PM

True, although it took him some 8 years to receive his medical degree :) Then, in 1882, he took a position at the Vienna General Hospital. Over the next 5 years he moved from department to department at the hospital, passing through surgery and dermatology before finally coming to rest at Theodor Meynert's department of psychiatry. [...]


9, actually. So basically, he spent 14 years to find his niche, his "true love," if you will...
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: smujd2007 on February 01, 2008, 08:20:13 AM
Right.  You are either way overqualified . . .  I have stopped counting the e-mails that I've gotten that say this, or someone else interviewed that had experience.  What's the point of summer clerkships and part time jobs during 2L and 3L?  Realistically, with the rigor of law school education, even the part time jobs are a little much to ask.  The reason that I even did them was more for the money than for the experience. 

I can deal with the crap in terms of being in law school, not being comfortable, having ups and downs, competition, etc.  But not being able to find ANY FULL TIME JOB when you get out? Now that is depressing. You are better off with a bachelor's in liberal arts alone.  At least then, the person that's hiring you doesn't see you as a threat to their job--and retaliates, even if you are more qualified than someone else.   

I wasnt depressed until I tried finding a job.  f**ck this *&^%.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: resume on February 01, 2008, 12:50:51 PM

True, although it took him some 8 years to receive his medical degree :) Then, in 1882, he took a position at the Vienna General Hospital. Over the next 5 years he moved from department to department at the hospital, passing through surgery and dermatology before finally coming to rest at Theodor Meynert's department of psychiatry. [...]


9, actually. So basically, he spent 14 years to find his niche, his "true love," if you will...


A very interesting type of "love," indeed!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Cafe Cargo on February 03, 2008, 12:05:53 PM
I'm not sure if you really get it...I mean, for God's sake it's pretty clear Freud was a geek who went into pure research, which were at that time mostly on an unpaid basis. Now, what this meant was that he went broke soon and ended up taking took up work at Theodor Meynert's Psychiatric Clinic. What do you think happened that made him famous? Well, during this period he began his studies into a promising new drug, cocaine, which he believed would become a common treatment for depression -- and perhaps even for other ailments, including indigestion. He himself became an enthusiastic user of cocaine, also handing it out to colleagues and relations (including his sisters) and praising its merits in various scholarly papers. Basically he went nuts. And productive in his work, including the research projects that were never successful before. The whole 'Freud fame' is in actuality nothing else but the 'cocaine fame'.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: al so on February 05, 2008, 10:19:03 AM
Cafe Cargo, is there anything I am missing? :)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: I Still Have a Pony on February 06, 2008, 03:56:18 PM

Fight/Flight mentality and the choice of a leader in the Fight/Flight group

As to the choice of a leader for a fight/flight group, Bion says:

Quote
"It is usually a man or woman with marked paranoid trends; perhaps, if the presence of an enemy is not immediately obvious to the group, the next best thing is for the group to choose a leader to whom it is."
 

This statement is important for several reasons. First, it makes it obvious that, according to Bion, it is not the leader who chooses his group -- neither according to his own needs or his perception of the group's needs -- but much more the basic assumption group which seeks and chooses its appropriate leader according to its (unconscious) needs. And second, the group's need to find an enemy, against whom they can either fight or from which they can flee, exists even before that enemy has been found, discovered or, indeed, invented. In other words, one might say, that if the Jews hadn't been there already for the Nazis to identify as the enemy, responsible for their miserable plight, the Nazis would have had to invent them! And as for the leadership role in this fight/flight dynamic, the German people were highly successful in picking a personality from among their ranks (who was, of course not even a German, but an Austrian!), and whose capacities as a leader of the fight/flight basic assumption have remained virtually unparalleled in history, Adolph Hitler. According to Bion, leadership is a product of the group mentality, not its origin. He writes:

Quote
The leader, on the basic assumption level, does not create the group by virtue of his fanatical adherence to an idea, but is rather an individual whose personality renders him peculiarly susceptible to the obliteration of individuality by the basic group's leadership requirements.

And here Bion links this phenomenon with the Kleinian theory of projective identification:

Quote
To me the leader is as much the creature of the basic assumption as any other member of the group, and this, I think, is to be expected if we envisage identification of the individual with the leader as depending not on introjection alone but on a simultaneous process of projective identification.


This "loss of individual distinctiveness" applies to the leader as much as to anyone else.

Thus the leader in the fight/flight group, for example, appears to have a distinctive personality because his personality is of a kind that lends itself to exploitation by the group demand for a leader who requires of it only a capacity for fighting or for flight; the leader has no greater freedom to be himself than any other member of the group. Bion compares this leader with

Quote
"an automaton who has ceased to be guided by his own will. He is leader by virtue of his capacity for instantaneous, involuntary combination with every other member of his group and only differs from them in that, whatever his function in the work group, he is the incarnation of the basic assumption group leader.


Bion points out that it is incapable of tolerating frustration in the long run, because in the sphere of basic assumption phenomena, time itself is not a relevant, not even an existent dimension of reality. Flight offers an immediately available opportunity for expression of the emotion in the fight/flight group and therefore meets the demand for instantaneous satisfaction -- therefore the group will take flight. Alternatively, attack offers a similarly immediate outlet -- then the group will fight. The fight/flight group will follow any leader who will give such orders as license instantaneous flight or instantaneous attack.

The capacity for "containment" as a prerequisite for good leadership

So, how can Bion's Container-Contained model serve as a model for good leadership in groups? Only a group which feels sufficiently contained will be able to function successfully over a long period of time as a work group. If anxieties, irrationalities, aggressions, envy and rivalry, disruptive unconscious fantasies and ideas, etc. are not adequately contained, they threaten to paralyse the group or to blow it up. If this is the case, then the group will be forced to fall back on functioning in a basic assumption mode in order to prevent such threats and disturbances from destroying the group altogether. The price paid for this is, however, is, of course, the loss of task orientation and with it, the capacity to do work. When, however, the work group leader is capable of offering the group enough containment, these disturbing factors can be "digested", can be better metabolised into the group's dynamic life, and it can then "feed" on this experience, can grow on it, learn from it, and thereby improve its capacity to devote itself to the task at hand and to achieve good results.

Containment as a leadership style -- where does it come from?

How containing the style of the leader and how given to blaming others when things go wrong (paranoid/schizoid position) versus acknowledging one's or one's institution's contribution towards the trouble one is in (depressive position), depends to a very large degree on the individual's capacity to maintain a relatively mature stance as opposed to falling into a defensive/paranoid one, and this capacity is based on early experiences and their later reworking as the life-cycle progresses. The assumption underlying this aspect of psychoanalytic theory suggests that the conditions necessary in order for a proper Container-Contained relationship in the Bionic sense to come into being are:

a) when an individual has him/herself had sufficient experience of containment in the course of his or her personal development, and
b) when s/he has thereby developed a capacity to identify both with the container as well as with "being contained" and then, through the process of introjective identification, has been able to include this as a significant and stable aspect of his or her own internal life.

This developmental process thus enables one to increase one's capacity to contain, and to employ containment of anxiety as a psychic tool, which can then be utilised as necessary in the authoritative execution of leadership roles.


Awesome, Hadrian!


Indeed lushy!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: panknow on February 07, 2008, 10:55:53 AM

Indeed, lushy!


Indeed, Mentorama!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Olay on February 07, 2008, 01:17:49 PM

Cafe Cargo, is there anything I am missing? :)


An "e" maybe? :)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: GSSG on February 08, 2008, 02:03:48 PM

Hitler had a preoccupation with the purity of blood. This was the foundation of the sterilization law and the euthanasia measures and ultimately of the Final Solution. Indeed, Hitler's use of medical imagery was striking. Depicting himself as physician to the diseased German body politic, Hitler variously portrayed the Jew as a tuberculosis bacillus infecting the German people, a toxin, a parasite, and a cancer. Syphilis, Hitler believed, was a Jewish disease that was "transmitted generationally, and destroyed races, nations, and ultimately mankind."

[...]The most important psychopathology of Hitler were paranoid delusions, particularly the threat of world domination by the Jews. Hitler's dominant ego defense was projection, which regularly interfered with his evaluation of his adversary's intentions. In addition to many paranoid features, narcissistic features are to be emphasized as well: his grandiosity, tenuous personal relationships, sensitivity to criticism, and potential for rage. These two severe personality characteristics — paranoia and narcissism — were joined in his eliminationist anti-Semitism.


Paranoia occurs in two forms: (1) the "bad me" paranoid; and (2) the "poor me" paranoid. Paranoia affects up to 2.5% of the population. The "bad me" type tends to be more rageful and sadistic than the other type. Paranoia in all its forms tends to be organized around aggression, from sadomasochistic violence to lingering hostile mood. Paranoia is an insidious disease which develops slowly as a secondary personality characteristic, fuses into a more or less dysfunctional coping style, and may or may not become the dominant pattern. Psychologists suspect that the cause of paranoia is found in the mothering experience, in particular, the breast-feeding experience. Successfully breast-fed infants develop the capacity to feel supported and a tolerance for frustration. Unsuccessfully breast-fed infants (those who viewed the experience as "bad" in some way) develop a distinct inability to experience self-satisfaction, tolerance, and positive relationships. Internalization of the bad experience leads to the initiation of provocative and confirmatory interactions with others, mostly through splitting (seeing things as black-white, good-bad, weak-strong) and projection (accusing others of having the disowned aspects of your self). A full-blown "bad me" paranoid perceives threats in everything other people do, often exploding in manic, counterphobic episodes. A full-blown "poor me" type views the world as basically unfair and persecutory, countering their anticipation of discomfort with either antisocial behavior or grandiosity.

Delusions: One the cardinal symptoms of paranoia and other disorders, most notably schizophrenia. Delusions are faulty interpretation of reality that cannot be shaken despite clear evidence to the contrary. Delusions can be classified as:

* Bizarre -- belief that others can hear your thoughts, others are inserting thoughts, or your thoughts, feelings, and impulses are controlled by an external force
* Referential -- belief that certain gestures, comments, song lyrics, or passages in printed material are specifically intended for you or reference you in some way
* Grandiose -- belief that you are an extremely important person, an invaluable member of society, and possess or make some special unrecognized talent or contribution
* Persecution -- belief that others are out to get you, are plotting against you, foiling your every move, or making you feel guilty or ashamed
* Bodily -- belief in some kind of undiagnosed deteriorative medical condition such as dissolving of spinal cord, rotting or deterioration of skin, organs, or brain
* Religious -- belief that you are an important religious figure, in contact with deities, or serving some special theological purpose in the world.

Drugs and alcohol are used to repair their personalities especially when there is a problematic representation of self to others. The personality disordered are commonly addicted persons because the "cycle of addiction" perpetuates the extreme self-state needed to shore up their self-cohesion while at the same time undermining any adaptive integration of self with experience. All addicted persons experience cycles of self-state extremes. One of the extreme self-states will be the dominant organizer of experience. An alcohol-induced self-state, for example, will assist in lowering inhibitions and facilitating aggressive tendencies. A psychoactive drug-induced self-state may assist in fostering paranoid delusions. The most serious and sadistic crimes committed by such individuals will be when they are at the peak of their dominant extreme self-state. This means that they commit crime while intoxicated or shortly thereafter. Since they only "need" to drink or drug when there is a need for personality repair, it's unclear if they have a substance addition, a violence addiction, or a state of mind addiction.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: s/c on February 09, 2008, 11:47:21 AM

Hitler had a preoccupation with the purity of blood. This was the foundation of the sterilization law and the euthanasia measures and ultimately of the Final Solution. Indeed, Hitler's use of medical imagery was striking. Depicting himself as physician to the diseased German body politic, Hitler variously portrayed the Jew as a tuberculosis bacillus infecting the German people, a toxin, a parasite, and a cancer. Syphilis, Hitler believed, was a Jewish disease that was "transmitted generationally, and destroyed races, nations, and ultimately mankind."

[...]The most important psychopathology of Hitler were paranoid delusions, particularly the threat of world domination by the Jews. Hitler's dominant ego defense was projection, which regularly interfered with his evaluation of his adversary's intentions. In addition to many paranoid features, narcissistic features are to be emphasized as well: his grandiosity, tenuous personal relationships, sensitivity to criticism, and potential for rage. These two severe personality characteristics — paranoia and narcissism — were joined in his eliminationist anti-Semitism.


Paranoia occurs in two forms: (1) the "bad me" paranoid; and (2) the "poor me" paranoid. Paranoia affects up to 2.5% of the population. The "bad me" type tends to be more rageful and sadistic than the other type. Paranoia in all its forms tends to be organized around aggression, from sadomasochistic violence to lingering hostile mood. Paranoia is an insidious disease which develops slowly as a secondary personality characteristic, fuses into a more or less dysfunctional coping style, and may or may not become the dominant pattern. Psychologists suspect that the cause of paranoia is found in the mothering experience, in particular, the breast-feeding experience. Successfully breast-fed infants develop the capacity to feel supported and a tolerance for frustration. Unsuccessfully breast-fed infants (those who viewed the experience as "bad" in some way) develop a distinct inability to experience self-satisfaction, tolerance, and positive relationships. Internalization of the bad experience leads to the initiation of provocative and confirmatory interactions with others, mostly through splitting (seeing things as black-white, good-bad, weak-strong) and projection (accusing others of having the disowned aspects of your self). A full-blown "bad me" paranoid perceives threats in everything other people do, often exploding in manic, counterphobic episodes. A full-blown "poor me" type views the world as basically unfair and persecutory, countering their anticipation of discomfort with either antisocial behavior or grandiosity.

Delusions: One the cardinal symptoms of paranoia and other disorders, most notably schizophrenia. Delusions are faulty interpretation of reality that cannot be shaken despite clear evidence to the contrary. Delusions can be classified as:

* Bizarre -- belief that others can hear your thoughts, others are inserting thoughts, or your thoughts, feelings, and impulses are controlled by an external force
* Referential -- belief that certain gestures, comments, song lyrics, or passages in printed material are specifically intended for you or reference you in some way
* Grandiose -- belief that you are an extremely important person, an invaluable member of society, and possess or make some special unrecognized talent or contribution
* Persecution -- belief that others are out to get you, are plotting against you, foiling your every move, or making you feel guilty or ashamed
* Bodily -- belief in some kind of undiagnosed deteriorative medical condition such as dissolving of spinal cord, rotting or deterioration of skin, organs, or brain
* Religious -- belief that you are an important religious figure, in contact with deities, or serving some special theological purpose in the world.

Drugs and alcohol are used to repair their personalities especially when there is a problematic representation of self to others. The personality disordered are commonly addicted persons because the "cycle of addiction" perpetuates the extreme self-state needed to shore up their self-cohesion while at the same time undermining any adaptive integration of self with experience. All addicted persons experience cycles of self-state extremes. One of the extreme self-states will be the dominant organizer of experience. An alcohol-induced self-state, for example, will assist in lowering inhibitions and facilitating aggressive tendencies. A psychoactive drug-induced self-state may assist in fostering paranoid delusions. The most serious and sadistic crimes committed by such individuals will be when they are at the peak of their dominant extreme self-state. This means that they commit crime while intoxicated or shortly thereafter. Since they only "need" to drink or drug when there is a need for personality repair, it's unclear if they have a substance addition, a violence addiction, or a state of mind addiction.


Awesome summary GSSG!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: A d e l on February 15, 2008, 01:56:25 PM

[...] everyone knows that all philosophical systems of thought, or scientific theories, for instance, are like paranoid delusions because they try to make sense of the world and our place in it. More specifically,


John Farrell has written a book titled "Freud's Paranoid Quest," a study of Freud's psychological theories. Farrell places Freud in the traditions of Romantic paranoia (with Rousseau and many others) and enlightened satire. He adds a most important (perhaps the most important) chapter to the recent revaluation of Freud's thought. He shows the egotism of Freud's "sytem" both in its theoretical and clinical manifestations, pointing to distortions in Freud's use of evidence derived from his patients and his relationships with his colleagues. The book is written for those who have serious questions about the scientific, philosophical, and literary value of Freud. All psychology ultimately stems from Freudian assumptions about the psyche, so Farrell's book would be one shattering the glass dome we live in, the dome built of Freudian constructs that, some people argue, would forever eliminate meaningful human interaction by reducing all actions and all discourse to the mere product of latent desires. Much more than just another Freud-bashing book, some consider it a systematic dismantling of the fantasy world -- built by a cocaine addict named Sigmund Freud -- in which many of us choose to spend our lives. Since the term paranoid is so loaded with stigma, the question leaps to mind immediately: Is this new book scholarship or slander? We thought we had heard it all, from the current crop of baiters and bashers, about the evil man Freud. But get ready for this one: according to Farrell, Freud was paranoid. Not just paranoid in the colloquial sense -- i.e., distrustful and suspicious, as you or I might be walking down the streets of New York at night, or as said of a certain style of politics or politician -- but clinically, pathologically paranoid, and that includes his character, his ideas, and his method.

What made Freud more dangerous, Farrell thinks, was his infectiousness. He managed to pass his neurosis on to the whole modern world. By turning his satiric eye on himself to demonstrate his passion for merciless truth seeking, Freud taught us all to be paranoid. When he put himself on the examining table, he demanded something in return: an adherence to what Farrell, ever numb to whimsy, considers the cornerstone of psychoanalysis -- the paranoid outlook, a constellation of unattractive, typically modernist traits, "suspicion both of individuals and of society, self-conscious intellectual excess, hostile and reductive logic and nihilating satiric irony." "Paranoia," he writes, "is the one communicable mental disease." And Freud has passed it on to us all. Never mind that paranoia is not exactly the same as irony, suspicion or satire. The reader can only conclude that if anyone is to be blamed for the current wave of deep suspicion against Freud, it is Freud himself.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: schrelly on February 15, 2008, 03:07:19 PM

Hitler had a preoccupation with the purity of blood. This was the foundation of the sterilization law and the euthanasia measures and ultimately of the Final Solution. Indeed, Hitler's use of medical imagery was striking. Depicting himself as physician to the diseased German body politic, Hitler variously portrayed the Jew as a tuberculosis bacillus infecting the German people, a toxin, a parasite, and a cancer. Syphilis, Hitler believed, was a Jewish disease that was "transmitted generationally, and destroyed races, nations, and ultimately mankind."

Hitler did not have any of the major psychoses, as some psychiatrists have suggested. Borderline personality disorder is ruled out as well. There is insufficient evidence of any conventional psychiatric disorder that might explain the extreme nature of Hitler's actions; a "politological" rather than a psychiatric diagnosis should be offered: political paranoia. The most important psychopathology of Hitler were paranoid delusions, particularly the threat of world domination by the Jews. Hitler's dominant ego defense was projection, which regularly interfered with his evaluation of his adversary's intentions. In addition to many paranoid features, narcissistic features are to be emphasized as well: his grandiosity, tenuous personal relationships, sensitivity to criticism, and potential for rage. These two severe personality characteristics — paranoia and narcissism — were joined in his eliminationist anti-Semitism. Hitler is the exemplar of the destructive charismatic who unifies his wounded people by identifying and attacking an enemy.


Hitler suffered from megalomania (delusional disorder) -- he had an infinitely deep inferiority complex and equally deep feeling of impotency; he overcompensated by a false sense of superiority and bravado. The megalomaniac sees himself as the center of the world, the one figure who has all the answers. He tolerates no disagreement, and sees external reality as either threatening or non-existent. His megalomania demands that his view of the reality be what he wants it to be to triumph over insecurity and fears, to annihilate internal fantasies of persecution and fears of being attacked.

Megalomania is a delusional system of power and greatness that protects the individual by serving as a defense against fear and paranoid anxieties. In response to fears of persecution, the megalomaniac individual develops a false sense of invulnerability --belief that oneself is not only great, but all knowing. He magically replaces hope for the future with an omnipotent belief that he knows the future. He knows what the right way is. Everything is that simple to him, but of course the real world is infinitely more complex and difficult to understand. He is permeated by omnipotent, magical grandiosity that attacks all thought... all hard thinking. When his obvious ignorance shows itself, he celebrates it, kids about it, which helps him to preserve his omnipotent sense of self. Megalomania has its roots in the child's delusions of omnipotence. A part of every child, dating from infancy, understands the world as revolving around him. In normal cases these childhood tendencies are socialized out, as the baby realizes the limits of its power. Yet if the baby fails to develop the ability to recognize his capacity to hurt others willfully -- and to feel compassion or the need to repair the hurt as a result -- these fantasies can go underground and persist into real life.

The relationship between the mother and infant plays a decisive role in the baby's development of compassion. However, if the mother has a damaged maternal instinct, and instead of powerful empathy has a cold-blooded power animus, the child has a permanently damaged capacity for empathy and compassion. At the same time this breakdown in the nurturing process from the mother impedes a child's growing ability to integrate the destructive fantasies we all have. He sees himself as both omnipotent and vulnerable, threatening and threatened. This pair of self images -- one inferior, one defensively overvaluing oneself -- coexists with these violent fantasies, which serve only to increase the child's need to see himself in grandiose, omnipotent terms.  The child may repress his violent fantasies, but only temporarily; they are never properly processed or integrated, and they linger in the unconscious as unfulfilled wishes, ready to be reactivated when the fears of persecution finally become too strong... The megalomaniac is indifferent to any damage he caused, because he has been acting according to his infallible intuitions, i.e., the word of God. He is without guilt or compassion, and incapable of even thinking about reparation. The greater the powers of the persecutors -- who the megalomaniac is convinced hide in holes everywhere -- the greater the power the megalomaniac personality must feel in order to face the challenge.

Thought Disorder

A person with disordered thinking will have an unusually difficult time absorbing and processing the information to make well informed decisions. The concept of disordered thought is important here: he confuses cause and effect, or dismisses the role of causation as downright irrelevant. His lying and backpeddling also points to thought disorder:  disinclined to do the work of thinking things through, he shows the disordered person's habit of relying on magical solutions.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: To Those Who Think on February 16, 2008, 04:00:01 PM

[...]

* Referential -- belief that certain gestures, comments, song lyrics, or passages in printed material are specifically intended for you or reference you in some way

[...]


Delusions of reference are the ones that are more "fun" -- they generally include experiences such as:

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: heinz on February 16, 2008, 05:01:06 PM

Cafe Cargo, is there anything I am missing? :)


An "e" maybe? :)


LOL Olay, I know what ya mean! ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: To Those Who Do on February 17, 2008, 07:27:24 AM

Hitler suffered from megalomania (delusional disorder) [...]


Be careful with the definitions -- while it is true that megalomania is a case of delusional disorder, it is not the only one; in fact, delusional disorder has at least 5 distinct types:


The second type -- often generally termed as delusions of grandeur -- is also called megalomania (a historical term for behavior characterized by delusional fantasies of wealth, power, genius, or omnipotence). According to Bleuler, the delusion of grandeur accompanies a persecutory delusion.

The term paranoia was previously used in psychiatry to denote what is now called 'delusional disorder'. The modern psychiatric use of the word paranoia is subtly different but now rarely refers to this specific diagnosis. Paranoia is often associated with psychotic illnesses, particularly schizophrenia, although attenuated features may be present in other primarily non-psychotic diagnoses, such as paranoid personality disorder. Paranoia can also be a side effect of medication or recreational drugs such as marijuana and particularly stimulants such as methamphetamine. Therefore, in common usage, the term paranoid addresses a range of mental conditions, assumed by the use of the term to be of psychiatric origin, in which the subject is seen to generalize or project fears and anxieties onto the external world, particularly in the form of organized behavior focused on them. The syndrome is applied equally to powerful people like executives obsessed with takeover bids or political leaders convinced of plots against them, and to insignificant people who believe for instance that shadowy agencies are operating against them.

A person with delusional disorder can be quite functional and does not tend to show any odd or bizarre behavior except as a direct result of the delusional belief. Nevertheless, the patient's way of life is likely to become more and more overwhelmed by the dominating effect of the abnormal beliefs, despite the encapsulation of the delusional system and the relative sparing of the personality. Thus, delusional disorder is a psychiatric diagnosis denoting a psychotic mental illness that involves holding one or more non-bizarre delusions in the absence of any other significant psychopathology (signs/symptoms of mental illness). In particular, a person with delusional disorder has never met any other criteria for schizophrenia and does not have any marked hallucinations, although tactile (touch) or olfactory (smell) hallucinations may be present if they are related to the theme of the delusion.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: To Those Who Succeed on February 20, 2008, 01:47:24 PM

[...] For example, the submissive partner in a folie a deux may quickly lose their delusional beliefs when separated from the dominant partner. [...]


Several cases of Shared Psychotic Disorder or Induced Delusional Disorder (folie à deux) have been reported in the literature. Folie à deux has been described as an intriguing condition of great relevance to the understanding of human psychopathology. It is the most impressive example of a pathological relationship. Forensic complications of fatality, admissions into a secure hospital, and suicide pacts related to the condition have been reported. About 8% of a series of cases of Induced Delusional Disorder occur among non-consanguineous patients or friends. Certain conditions are needed for Shared Delusional Disorder to occur during incarceration or in a forensic hospital. The environment of intimate relationships over the years and isolation are fertile grounds for the development of Induced Delusional Disorder. For incarcerated populations and especially those with long sentences, living together for long periods fosters intimacy. Solitary confinement also produces isolation, which is a breeding ground for delusional ideas and paranoid disorders. The interaction between patients with various diagnostic characteristics of dominance and submissiveness could fuel the development of these disorders. These conditions are conducive to paranoia because of the various disordered personality types in the residents of forensic treatment centers. Hypothetically, induction could happen when a patient with suspicious and self-important cluster B personality characteristics befriends a timid, dependent, and suggestible patient with cluster C personality symptoms. The absence of several cases in these settings (prison and forensic hospitals) may be the result of underreporting or the lack of recognition of rare psychiatric syndromes in the penal system.

Such cases are intriguing in the sense that the delusions are not bizarre, were shared strongly, and influenced the patients' functioning. These features are characteristic of Shared Delusional Disorder in 3 patients. Their delusions are held despite incontrovertible proof to the contrary. Although the 3 were non-white, they were only significantly different from the remainder of the patients in their belief in the delusions. The center catered to the mental health needs of over 200 patients, 70% to 80% of whom were non-white. The two induced patients had never expressed those beliefs prior to the inducer's admission to the center. The inducer was the last of the three to be admitted to the center. He was also the oldest, commanding the respect and seniority needed to produce a domineering tendency. He was also looked on as a respected older person by the two induced patients. The first induced patient was vulnerable to desiring early release because of his long sentence. His previous schizophrenic delusions were extended in the form of folie induite (induced psychosis). The third patient, the second one induced, manifested a strong desire to feel important and had recently thought of himself as having a high "social status." The loss of status may have led him to identify with the promises of the delusions. His represented a case described as folie imposée (imposed psychosis). Separation from the inducer led to a loss of delusional beliefs in his case. Furthermore, he was reported to be a slow learner and was thought to have mental retardation. His psychological assessment placed him at the lower end of the normal intelligence range. It is therefore still possible that diminished intelligence, known as a significant etiological factor in developing Shared Delusional Disorder, may have played a part in his case.

This case extends the debate regarding the gene-environment interaction in the development of delusional disorders. Separation, a simple environmental manipulation with therapeutic effects, weakens the genetic argument. This notion is not conclusive, as there are cases of resistance after separation. However, the diagnosis of schizophrenia in the first induced patient and drug-induced delirium with low-normal intelligence in the second induced patient strengthens the idea of genetic and organic pathogeneses of the disorder. Organic brain syndromes and substances like methylphenidate and cannabis have been factors strongly associated with Induced Delusional Disorder. This connection is especially applicable in the case of the second induced patient. The use of psychotropic medication, cognitive verbal challenge, empirical provision of alternative explanations to erroneous beliefs, and the environmental manipulation of the patients resulted in moderate improvements, thus confirming the pathoplastic nature of the origins of the disorder.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: opportunity on February 21, 2008, 10:34:44 AM
Well, nihilism ensues from anomie, the old order crumbles to dust and a new one is born from the pain and suffering of the transition. Rarely is this recognized as it happens.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Pine on February 22, 2008, 08:01:22 AM

[...] 'Members do it with projective identification.' Members of families, couples, groups, institutions, tribes, cultures and so on. Work with survivors of catastrophes shows that the trauma acts like a homing device and ransacks or searches out the history of the victim until it finds a congruent, early experience. It latches onto that -- tightly -- and can only be dislodged with the greatest difficulty. Another image is of hungry birds in a nest -- heads vertical, beaks open, cheeping. You may think that they are only craving, but they are also projecting like mad, and what mother thrusts down their throats on her return goes deep. What is true of worms served up as food for birds is also true of people with respect to prejudices and other deeply held beliefs. They become so deeply implanted or sedimented that they are 'second nature'. From the beginning the infant forms some object relationships, predominantly in phantasy. In her view, the outward deflection of the death instinct postulated by Freud creates the fantasy of a deathly bad object... First we project our destructiveness into others; then we wish to annihilate them without guilt because they contain all the evil and destructiveness'. When we read accounts of the genocide of the Conquistadors, the Stalinists, the Germans, the Kampucheans, the Americans or the Iraqis, we must ask what has been projected into these people from the most primitive parts of their tormentors. [...]

[...] Where positive aspects of the self are forcefully projected similar degrees of depersonalization occur, with feelings of personal worthlessness and with dependent worship of the other's contrasting strengths, powers, uncanny sensitivity, marvellous gifts, thoughts, knowledge, undying goodness etc. This is the world of the devotee, cults and hero-promotion. It is also a world in which people will do anything a Bagwan or a Rev. James Jones tells them to do -- from sexual licence to mass suicide. The same suspension of one's own sense of right and wrong is at work in the followers L. Ron Hubbard in the Church of Scientiology as in the helter-skelter minds of the devotees of Charles Manson, killing rich Californians, and in the convictions of bombers and perpetrators of sectarian murders in Northern Ireland or terrorists from Lybia, though the ideologies of the respective group leaders may have utterly different apparent of real justifications.


CLarification, please...
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: p i n e on February 22, 2008, 09:39:36 AM

Several cases of Shared Psychotic Disorder or Induced Delusional Disorder (folie à deux) have been reported in the literature. Folie à deux has been described as an intriguing condition of great relevance to the understanding of human psychopathology. It is the most impressive example of a pathological relationship. Forensic complications of fatality, admissions into a secure hospital, and suicide pacts related to the condition have been reported. About 8% of a series of cases of Induced Delusional Disorder occur among non-consanguineous patients or friends. Certain conditions are needed for Shared Delusional Disorder to occur during incarceration or in a forensic hospital. The environment of intimate relationships over the years and isolation are fertile grounds for the development of Induced Delusional Disorder. For incarcerated populations and especially those with long sentences, living together for long periods fosters intimacy. Solitary confinement also produces isolation, which is a breeding ground for delusional ideas and paranoid disorders. The interaction between patients with various diagnostic characteristics of dominance and submissiveness could fuel the development of these disorders. These conditions are conducive to paranoia because of the various disordered personality types in the residents of forensic treatment centers. Hypothetically, induction could happen when a patient with suspicious and self-important cluster B personality characteristics befriends a timid, dependent, and suggestible patient with cluster C personality symptoms. The absence of several cases in these settings (prison and forensic hospitals) may be the result of underreporting or the lack of recognition of rare psychiatric syndromes in the penal system.

Such cases are intriguing in the sense that the delusions are not bizarre, were shared strongly, and influenced the patients' functioning. These features are characteristic of Shared Delusional Disorder in 3 patients. Their delusions are held despite incontrovertible proof to the contrary. Although the 3 were non-white, they were only significantly different from the remainder of the patients in their belief in the delusions. The center catered to the mental health needs of over 200 patients, 70% to 80% of whom were non-white. The two induced patients had never expressed those beliefs prior to the inducer's admission to the center. The inducer was the last of the three to be admitted to the center. He was also the oldest, commanding the respect and seniority needed to produce a domineering tendency. He was also looked on as a respected older person by the two induced patients. The first induced patient was vulnerable to desiring early release because of his long sentence. His previous schizophrenic delusions were extended in the form of folie induite (induced psychosis). The third patient, the second one induced, manifested a strong desire to feel important and had recently thought of himself as having a high "social status." The loss of status may have led him to identify with the promises of the delusions. His represented a case described as folie imposée (imposed psychosis). Separation from the inducer led to a loss of delusional beliefs in his case. Furthermore, he was reported to be a slow learner and was thought to have mental retardation. His psychological assessment placed him at the lower end of the normal intelligence range. It is therefore still possible that diminished intelligence, known as a significant etiological factor in developing Shared Delusional Disorder, may have played a part in his case.

This case extends the debate regarding the gene-environment interaction in the development of delusional disorders. Separation, a simple environmental manipulation with therapeutic effects, weakens the genetic argument. This notion is not conclusive, as there are cases of resistance after separation. However, the diagnosis of schizophrenia in the first induced patient and drug-induced delirium with low-normal intelligence in the second induced patient strengthens the idea of genetic and organic pathogeneses of the disorder. Organic brain syndromes and substances like methylphenidate and cannabis have been factors strongly associated with Induced Delusional Disorder. This connection is especially applicable in the case of the second induced patient. The use of psychotropic medication, cognitive verbal challenge, empirical provision of alternative explanations to erroneous beliefs, and the environmental manipulation of the patients resulted in moderate improvements, thus confirming the pathoplastic nature of the origins of the disorder.


T'is very interesting!
Title: Depression and the Legal Profession
Post by: erand on February 23, 2008, 11:23:03 AM

University of Washington School of Law says that at least 1 out of every 5 of their law students seeks counseling during the course of law school. (if 1/5 law students actually seek counseling, the numbers of students who could actually benefit from counseling is substantially higher.)

If the student has insurance plan, she may receive 15 out-patient mental health visits per policy year. In addition to outside resources, the Law School has a mental health professional on call; services are free of charge to law students. For both financial and workload reasons, the doctor accepts clients on a referral basis.

Sometimes, however, people who could benefit from counseling do not feel as though counseling is necessary. If you have had two or more of the following symptoms for longer than a few days, please seek evaluation and treatment as soon as possible.

The Dysphoric Array:
- Mixture of anxiety, depression, and hostility
- Thoughts of killing self
- Feeling so unhappy that you can not shake it
- Dissatisfied or bored with most aspects of life
- Nicotine use (the most efficient anti-dysphoric on the legal market - significant cancer risk attached)
- Disrupted sleep - never feeling sufficiently rested
- Increased social isolation
- Limiting normal exercise patterns

The Alcohol/Drug Dependent Array:
- Managing sleep patterns through using substance
- Feeling guilty about your use of alcohol or drugs
- Drinking or using drugs creates problems between you and your partner, parent, or relatives
- Neglecting your obligations for longer than a day because of negative consequences related to use
- No memory of time period during use
- Increased social isolation
- Limiting normal exercise patterns


DEPRESSION (di-pres/en) -- a lowering of vital energy (Webster's Dictionary)

Depression is a broad term used to refer to a range of different diseases recognized by the medical field. We also use the term to refer to temporary and minor negative feelings (i.e. I'm depressed because the Pacers lost last night or the post-holiday blues.) Depressive illnesses include major depression, the bipolar disorders, dysthymia, cyclothymia, and variations of these based on timing of the onset (i.e. seasonal or post partum), duration of symptoms, or severity of symptoms. These illnesses impact over 19 million adults in America each year. Depression is frequently seen as a complicating factor in heart attack, stroke, diabetes and cancer patients. In fact, depression increases one's risk of having a heart attack. Almost anyone who kills him or herself suffers from a mental disorder, most often a form of depression or substance abuse or both.

The key factor in diagnosing most of these illnesses is the presence of a major depressive episode. To be diagnosed with a major depressive episode your symptoms must last at least 2 weeks. The symptoms must also appear to be a change from previous functioning. There are people who resemble Winnie the Pooh's Eyre their whole life but are not depressed. The symptoms of a major depressive disorder include:


Thankfully, most people do not experience all of the symptoms. To be diagnosed with a major depressive episode one must experience at least 5 of the above symptoms and 1 of the 5 must be either depressed mood or diminished interest or pleasure in most activities. If one meets several of these symptoms, but less than 5, there are milder depressive disorders that can still be diagnosed. It is important to remember that each person will experience a different set of symptoms with their depression and that the symptoms will look different with different people. No two people will experience depression in exactly the same manner. There are, however, some common themes that do repeat themselves, particularly in lawyers. In lawyers the most common symptoms are closely related to the work we are trying to do. Reduced ability to concentrate is one of the most bothersome symptoms for attorneys. They may have had trouble sleeping and a poor appetite for some time but attorneys often seek treatment when they realize that their ability to concentrate and get their work done is compromised. When you add together reduced ability to concentrate with fatigue and loss of interest in most all activities it is highly likely that the attorney's work is going to suffer at least in quantity if not in quality. In addition, attorneys in this condition often try to remedy the problem by working longer hours to keep up on the quantity of their work. In doing so they reduce contact with significant, supportive people in their life, reduce the amount of time they spend on exercise, hobbies, and other stress reducing activities, and cut back further on what is most likely already inadequate sleep. In their attempts to solve the problem they are doing the opposite of what they need and falling deeper into the hole of depression.

If you have a strong family history of depression you may decide that it is best to stay on medication for some time. On the other hand, if you have no family history and your depression occurred during the year that your divorce was final, your mother died, and you lost your job, you might have more of an acute and situational depression and might not be on medication very long. Regardless, the skills you learn in therapy are what will help you to avoid future episodes of depression. This is critical because it is generally accepted in the psychiatric field that if you have one episode of depression there is a 50% chance that you will have a second episode. If you have a second episode of depression there is a 70% chance that you will have a third episode and if you have a third episode there is a 90% chance that you will have yet another episode. Clearly, it is worthwhile to do all you can to treat a first episode of depression to increase the chances that it will be your only experience with depression.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: aria on February 23, 2008, 12:45:56 PM

Delusions of reference are the ones that are more "fun" -- they generally include experiences such as:

  • feeling that people on television or radio are talking about, or talking directly to them
  • believing that headlines or stories in newspapers are written especially for them
  • having the experience that people (often strangers) drop hints or say things about them behind their back
  • believing that events (even world events) have been deliberately contrived for them, or have special personal significance
  • seeing objects or events as being deliberately set up to convey a special or particular meaning


You think the narcissist's ideas of reference are less "fun"? The narcissist is the centre of the world. He is not merely the centre of HIS world -- as far as he can tell, he is the centre of THE world. This Archimedean delusion is one of the narcissist's most predominant and all-pervasive cognitive distortions. The narcissist feels certain that he is the source of all events around him, the origin of all the emotions of his nearest or dearest, the fount of all knowledge, both the first and the final cause, the beginning as well as the end.

This is understandable.

The narcissist derives his sense of being, his experience of his own existence, and his self-worth from the outside. He mines others for Narcissistic Supply -- adulation, attention, reflection, fear. Their reactions stoke his furnace. Absent Narcissistic Supply -- the narcissist disintegrates and self-annihilates. When unnoticed, he feels empty and worthless. The narcissist MUST delude himself into believing that he is persistently the focus and object of the attentions, intentions, plans, feelings, and stratagems of other people. The narcissist faces a stark choice - either be (or become) the permanent centre of the world, or cease to be altogether. This constant obsession with one's locus, with one's centrality, with one's position as a hub -- leads to referential ideation ("ideas of reference"). This is the conviction that one is at the receiving end of other people's behaviours, speech, and even thoughts. The person suffering from delusional ideas of reference is at the centre and focus of the constant (and confabulated) attentions of an imaginary audience.

When people talk -- the narcissist is convinced that he is the topic of discussion. When they quarrel -- he is most probably the cause. When they smirk -- he is the victim of their ridicule. If they are unhappy -- he made them so. If they are happy -- they are egotists for ignoring him. He is convinced that his behaviour is continuously monitored, criticized, compared, dissected, approved of, or imitated by others. He deems himself so indispensable and important, such a critical component of other people's lives, that his every act, his every word, his every omission -- is bound to upset, hurt, uplift, or satisfy his audience. And, to the narcissist, everyone is but an audience. It all emanates from him -- and it all reverts to him. The narcissist's is a circular and closed universe. His ideas of reference are a natural extension of his primitive defence mechanisms (omnipotence, omniscience, omnipresence). Being omnipresent explains why everyone, everywhere is concerned with him. Being omnipotent and omniscient excludes other, lesser, beings from enjoying the admiration, adulation, and attention of people.

Yet, the attrition afforded by years of tormenting ideas of reference inevitably yields paranoiac thinking. To preserve his egocentric cosmology, the narcissist is compelled to attribute fitting motives and psychological dynamics to others. Such motives and dynamics have little to do with reality. They are PROJECTED by the narcissist UNTO others so as to maintain his personal mythology. In other words, the narcissist attributes to others HIS OWN motives and psychodynamics. And since narcissists are mostly besieged by transformations of aggression (rage, hatred, envy, fear) -- these they often attribute to others as well. Thus, the narcissist tends to interpret other people's behaviour as motivated by anger, fear, hatred, or envy and as directed at him or revolving around him. The narcissist (often erroneously) believes that people discuss him, gossip about him, hate him, defame him, mock him, berate him, underestimate him, envy him, or fear him. He is (often rightly) convinced that he is, to others, the source of hurt, humiliation, impropriety, and indignation. The narcissist "knows" that he is a wonderful, powerful, talented, and entertaining person -- but this only explains why people are jealous and why they seek to undermine and destroy him. Thus, since the narcissist is unable to secure the long term POSITIVE love, admiration, or even attention of his Sources of Supply -- he resorts to a mirror strategy. In other words, the narcissist becomes paranoid. Better to be the object of (often imaginary and always self inflicted) derision, scorn, and bile -- than to be ignored. Being envied is preferable to being treated with indifference. If he cannot be loved -- the narcissist would rather be feared or hated than forgotten.
Title: Re: Depression and the Legal Profession
Post by: libo on February 24, 2008, 10:38:03 AM

Depression is a broad term used to refer to a range of different diseases recognized by the medical field. We also use the term to refer to temporary and minor negative feelings (i.e. I'm depressed because the Pacers lost last night or the post-holiday blues.) Depressive illnesses include major depression, the bipolar disorders, dysthymia, cyclothymia, and variations of these based on timing of the onset (i.e. seasonal or post partum), duration of symptoms, or severity of symptoms. These illnesses impact over 19 million adults in America each year. Depression is frequently seen as a complicating factor in heart attack, stroke, diabetes and cancer patients. In fact, depression increases one's risk of having a heart attack. Almost anyone who kills him or herself suffers from a mental disorder, most often a form of depression or substance abuse or both.

The key factor in diagnosing most of these illnesses is the presence of a major depressive episode. To be diagnosed with a major depressive episode your symptoms must last at least 2 weeks. The symptoms must also appear to be a change from previous functioning. There are people who resemble Winnie the Pooh's Eyre their whole life but are not depressed. The symptoms of a major depressive disorder include:

  • Depressed mood.
  • Diminished interest or pleasure in most activities.
  • Significant weight loss or gain without effort or loss of appetite.
  • Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much.
  • Psychomotor agitation or retardation.
  • Fatigue.
  • Feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt.
  • Diminished ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness.
  • Recurrent thoughts of death, suicidal ideation, or a suicide attempt or plan.


Depression is a form of aggression. Transformed, this aggression is directed at the depressed person rather than at his environment. This regime of repressed and mutated aggression is a characteristic of both narcissism and depression. Originally, the narcissist experiences "forbidden" thoughts and urges (sometimes to the point of an obsession). His mind is full of "dirty" words, curses, the remnants of magical thinking ("If I think or wish something it just might happen"), denigrating and malicious thinking concerned with authority figures (mostly parents or teachers). These are all proscribed by the Superego. This is doubly true if the individual possesses a sadistic, capricious Superego (a result of the wrong kind of parenting). These thoughts and wishes do not fully surface. The individual is only aware of them in passing and vaguely. But they are sufficient to provoke intense guilt feelings and to set in motion a chain of self-flagellation and self-punishment. Amplified by an abnormally strict, sadistic, and punitive Superego -- this results in a constant feeling of imminent threat. This is what we call anxiety. It has no discernible external triggers and, therefore, it is not fear. It is the echo of a battle between one part of the personality, which viciously wishes to destroy the individual through excessive punishment -- and the instinct of self-preservation.

Anxiety is not an irrational reaction to internal dynamics involving imaginary threats. Actually, anxiety is more rational than many fears. The powers unleashed by the Superego are so enormous, its intentions so fatal, the self-loathing and self-degradation that it brings with it so intense -- that the threat is real. Overly strict Superegos are usually coupled with weaknesses and vulnerabilities in all other personality structures. Thus, there is no psychic structure able to fight back, to take the side of the depressed person. Small wonder that depressives have constant suicidal ideation (they toy with ideas of self-mutilation and suicide), or worse, commit such acts. Confronted with a horrible internal enemy, lacking in defences, falling apart at the seams, depleted by previous attacks, devoid of energy of life -- the depressed wishes himself dead. Anxiety is about survival, the alternatives being, usually, self-torture or self-annihilation. Depression is how such people experience their overflowing reservoirs of aggression. They are a volcano, which is about to explode and bury them under their own ashes. Anxiety is how they experience the war raging inside them. Sadness is the name that they give to the resulting wariness, to the knowledge that the battle is lost and personal doom is at hand. Depression is the acknowledgement by the depressed individual that something is so fundamentally wrong that there is no way he can win. The individual is depressed because he is fatalistic. As long as he believes that there is a chance -- however slim -- to better his position, he moves in and out of depressive episodes.

True, anxiety disorders and depression (mood disorders) do not belong in the same diagnostic category. But they are very often comorbid. In many cases, the patient tries to exorcise his depressive demons by adopting ever more bizarre rituals. These are the compulsions, which -- by diverting energy and attention away from the "bad" content in more or less symbolic (though totally arbitrary) ways -- bring temporary relief and an easing of the anxiety. It is very common to meet all 4: a mood disorder, an anxiety disorder, an obsessive-compulsive disorder and a personality disorder in one patient. Depression is the most varied of all psychological illnesses. It assumes a myriad of guises and disguises. Many people are chronically depressed without even knowing it and without corresponding cognitive or affective contents. Some depressive episodes are part of a cycle of ups and downs (bipolar disorder and a milder form, the cyclothymic disorder). Other depressions are "built into" the characters and the personalities of the patients (the dysthymic disorder or what used to be known as depressive neurosis). One type of depression is even seasonal and can be cured by photo-therapy (gradual exposure to carefully timed artificial lighting). We all experience "adjustment disorders with depressed mood" (used to be called reactive depression -- which occurs after a stressful life event and as a direct and time-limited reaction to it). These poisoned garden varieties are all-pervasive. Not a single aspect of the human condition escapes them, not one element of human behaviour avoids their grip. It is not wise (has no predictive or explanatory value) to differentiate "good" or "normal" depressions from "pathological" ones. There are no "good" depressions.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: libo on February 24, 2008, 10:39:19 AM
Whether provoked by misfortune or endogenously (from the inside), whether during childhood or later in life -- it is all one and the same. A depression is a depression is a depression no matter what its precipitating causes are or in which stage in life it appears. The only valid distinction seems to be phenomenological: some depressives slow down (psychomotor retardation), their appetite, sex life (libido) and sleep (known together as the vegetative) functions are notably perturbed. Behaviour patterns change or disappear altogether. These patients feel dead: they are anhedonic (find pleasure or excitement in nothing) and dysphoric (sad). The other type of depressive is psychomotorically active (at times, hyperactive), reporting overwhelming guilt feelings, anxiety, even to the point of having delusions (delusional thinking, not grounded in reality but in a thwarted logic of an outlandish world). The most severe cases (severity is also manifest physiologically, in the worsening of the above-mentioned symptoms) exhibit paranoia (delusions of systematic conspiracies to persecute them), and seriously entertain ideas of self-destruction and the destruction of others (nihilistic delusions). They hallucinate. Their hallucinations reveal their hidden contents: self-deprecation, the need to be (self) punished, humiliation, "bad" or "cruel" or "permissive" thoughts about authority figures. Depressives are almost never psychotic (psychotic depression does not belong to this family). Depression does not necessarily entail a marked change in mood. "Masked depression" is, therefore, difficult to diagnose if we stick to the strict definition of depression as a "mood" disorder.

Depression can happen at any age, to anyone, with or without a preceding stressful event. It can set on gradually or erupt dramatically. The earlier it occurs -- the more likely it is to recur. This apparently arbitrary and shifting nature of depression only enhances the guilt feelings of the patient. He refuses to accept that the source of his problems is beyond his control (at least as much as his aggression) and could be biological, for instance. The depressive patient always blames himself, or events in his immediate past, or his environment. This is a vicious and self-fulfilling prophetic cycle. The depressive feels worthless, doubts his future and his abilities, feels guilty. This constant brooding alienates his dearest and nearest. His interpersonal relationships become distorted and disrupted and this, in turn, exacerbates his depression. The patient finally finds it most convenient and rewarding to avoid human contact altogether. He resigns from his job, shies away from social occasions, sexually abstains, shuts off his few remaining friends and family members. Hostility, avoidance, histrionics all emerge and the existence of personality disorders only make matters worse. Freud said that the depressive person had lost a love object (was deprived of a properly functioning parent). The psychic trauma suffered early on can be alleviated only by inflicting self-punishment (thus implicitly "punishing" and devaluing the internalised version of the disappointing love object). The development of the Ego is conditioned upon a successful resolution of the loss of the love objects (a phase all of us have to go through). When the love object fails -- the child is furious, revengeful, and aggressive. Unable to direct these negative emotions at the frustrating parent -- the child directs them at himself. Narcissistic identification means that the child prefers to love himself (direct his libido at himself) than to love an unpredictable, abandoning parent (mother, in most cases). Thus, the child becomes his own parent -- and directs his aggression at himself (to the parent that he has become). Throughout this wrenching process, the Ego feels helpless and this is another major source of depression.

When depressed, the patient tars his life, people around him, his experiences, places, and memories with a thick brush of schmaltzy, sentimental, and nostalgic longing. The depressive imbues everything with sadness: a tune, a sight, a colour, another person, a situation, a memory. In this sense, the depressive is cognitively distorted. He interprets his experiences, evaluates his self and assesses the future totally negatively. He behaves as though constantly disenchanted, disillusioned, and hurting (dysphoric affect) and this helps to sustain the distorted perceptions. No success, accomplishment, or support can break this cycle because it is so self-contained and self-enhancing. Dysphoric affect supports distorted perceptions, which enhance dysphoria, which encourages self-defeating behaviours, which bring about failure, which justifies depression. This is a cosy little circle, charmed and emotionally protective because it is unfailingly predictable. Depression is addictive because it is a strong love substitute. Much like drugs, it has its own rituals, language and worldview. It imposes rigid order and behavior patterns on the depressive. This is learned helplessness -- the depressive prefers to avoid situations even if they hold the promise of improvement. The depressive patient has been conditioned by repeated aversive stimuli to freeze -- he does not even have the energy needed to exit this cruel world by committing suicide. The depressive is devoid of the positive reinforcements, which are the building blocks of our self-esteem. He is filled with negative thinking about his self, his (lack of) goals, his (lack of) achievements, his emptiness and loneliness and so on. And because his cognition and perceptions are deformed -- no cognitive or rational input can alter the situation. Everything is immediately reinterpreted to fit the paradigm.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: bon gre mal gre on March 05, 2008, 09:23:11 AM

Delusions of reference are the ones that are more "fun" -- they generally include experiences such as:

  • feeling that people on television or radio are talking about, or talking directly to them
  • believing that headlines or stories in newspapers are written especially for them
  • having the experience that people (often strangers) drop hints or say things about them behind their back
  • believing that events (even world events) have been deliberately contrived for them, or have special personal significance
  • seeing objects or events as being deliberately set up to convey a special or particular meaning


You think the narcissist's ideas of reference are less "fun"? The narcissist is the centre of the world. He is not merely the centre of HIS world -- as far as he can tell, he is the centre of THE world. This Archimedean delusion is one of the narcissist's most predominant and all-pervasive cognitive distortions. The narcissist feels certain that he is the source of all events around him, the origin of all the emotions of his nearest or dearest, the fount of all knowledge, both the first and the final cause, the beginning as well as the end.

This is understandable.

The narcissist derives his sense of being, his experience of his own existence, and his self-worth from the outside. He mines others for Narcissistic Supply -- adulation, attention, reflection, fear. Their reactions stoke his furnace. Absent Narcissistic Supply -- the narcissist disintegrates and self-annihilates. When unnoticed, he feels empty and worthless. The narcissist MUST delude himself into believing that he is persistently the focus and object of the attentions, intentions, plans, feelings, and stratagems of other people. The narcissist faces a stark choice - either be (or become) the permanent centre of the world, or cease to be altogether. This constant obsession with one's locus, with one's centrality, with one's position as a hub -- leads to referential ideation ("ideas of reference"). This is the conviction that one is at the receiving end of other people's behaviours, speech, and even thoughts. The person suffering from delusional ideas of reference is at the centre and focus of the constant (and confabulated) attentions of an imaginary audience.

When people talk -- the narcissist is convinced that he is the topic of discussion. When they quarrel -- he is most probably the cause. When they smirk -- he is the victim of their ridicule. If they are unhappy -- he made them so. If they are happy -- they are egotists for ignoring him. He is convinced that his behaviour is continuously monitored, criticized, compared, dissected, approved of, or imitated by others. He deems himself so indispensable and important, such a critical component of other people's lives, that his every act, his every word, his every omission -- is bound to upset, hurt, uplift, or satisfy his audience. And, to the narcissist, everyone is but an audience. It all emanates from him -- and it all reverts to him. The narcissist's is a circular and closed universe. His ideas of reference are a natural extension of his primitive defence mechanisms (omnipotence, omniscience, omnipresence). Being omnipresent explains why everyone, everywhere is concerned with him. Being omnipotent and omniscient excludes other, lesser, beings from enjoying the admiration, adulation, and attention of people.

Yet, the attrition afforded by years of tormenting ideas of reference inevitably yields paranoiac thinking. To preserve his egocentric cosmology, the narcissist is compelled to attribute fitting motives and psychological dynamics to others. Such motives and dynamics have little to do with reality. They are PROJECTED by the narcissist UNTO others so as to maintain his personal mythology. In other words, the narcissist attributes to others HIS OWN motives and psychodynamics. And since narcissists are mostly besieged by transformations of aggression (rage, hatred, envy, fear) -- these they often attribute to others as well. Thus, the narcissist tends to interpret other people's behaviour as motivated by anger, fear, hatred, or envy and as directed at him or revolving around him. The narcissist (often erroneously) believes that people discuss him, gossip about him, hate him, defame him, mock him, berate him, underestimate him, envy him, or fear him. He is (often rightly) convinced that he is, to others, the source of hurt, humiliation, impropriety, and indignation. The narcissist "knows" that he is a wonderful, powerful, talented, and entertaining person -- but this only explains why people are jealous and why they seek to undermine and destroy him. Thus, since the narcissist is unable to secure the long term POSITIVE love, admiration, or even attention of his Sources of Supply -- he resorts to a mirror strategy. In other words, the narcissist becomes paranoid. Better to be the object of (often imaginary and always self inflicted) derision, scorn, and bile -- than to be ignored. Being envied is preferable to being treated with indifference. If he cannot be loved -- the narcissist would rather be feared or hated than forgotten.


Great post aria!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: AnneBoleyn on March 05, 2008, 10:09:54 PM
tag
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: castrot on March 09, 2008, 04:31:40 PM
tag indeed
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: rudin on March 10, 2008, 09:48:25 AM

What was the genesis of Hitler's evil? Many theories are given ranging from:

- born with one testicle


That's called cryptorchidism and represents failure of the testis to move, or "descend," during fetal development from an abdominal position, through the inguinal canal, into the ipsilateral scrotum. About two thirds of cases without other abnormalities are unilateral; 1/3 involve both testes. In 90% of cases an undescended testis can be palpated (felt) in the inguinal canal; in a minority the testis or testes are in the abdomen or nonexistent (truly "hidden"). Undescended testes are associated with reduced fertility, increased risk of testicular germ cell tumors and psychological problems when the boy is grown. Undescended testes are also more susceptible to testicular torsion and infarction and inguinal hernias. To reduce these risks, undescended testes are usually brought into the scrotum in infancy by a surgical procedure called an orchiopexy. Although cryptorchidism nearly always refers to congenital absence or maldescent, a testis observed in the scrotum in early infancy can occasionally "reascend" (move back up) into the inguinal canal. A testis which can readily move or be moved between the scrotum and canal is referred to as retractile. During the last century, cryptorchidism was sometimes restricted to the subset of undescended testes that were not palpable above the scrotum or in the inguinal canal — those that were truly hidden in the abdomen or completely absent. In recent decades the distinction is no longer made in most contexts, and the two terms are used interchangeably. Cryptorchism is an older variant of the same term.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: scander on March 11, 2008, 03:54:39 PM

What was the genesis of Hitler's evil? Many theories are given ranging from:

- born with one testicle


That's called cryptorchidism and represents failure of the testis to move, or "descend," during fetal development from an abdominal position, through the inguinal canal, into the ipsilateral scrotum. About two thirds of cases without other abnormalities are unilateral; 1/3 involve both testes. In 90% of cases an undescended testis can be palpated (felt) in the inguinal canal; in a minority the testis or testes are in the abdomen or nonexistent (truly "hidden"). Undescended testes are associated with reduced fertility, increased risk of testicular germ cell tumors and psychological problems when the boy is grown. Undescended testes are also more susceptible to testicular torsion and infarction and inguinal hernias. To reduce these risks, undescended testes are usually brought into the scrotum in infancy by a surgical procedure called an orchiopexy. Although cryptorchidism nearly always refers to congenital absence or maldescent, a testis observed in the scrotum in early infancy can occasionally "reascend" (move back up) into the inguinal canal. A testis which can readily move or be moved between the scrotum and canal is referred to as retractile. During the last century, cryptorchidism was sometimes restricted to the subset of undescended testes that were not palpable above the scrotum or in the inguinal canal — those that were truly hidden in the abdomen or completely absent. In recent decades the distinction is no longer made in most contexts, and the two terms are used interchangeably. Cryptorchism is an older variant of the same term.


The psychoanalytic literature contains only scant references to the testicles and their role in the mental life of the male child. This fact alone invites a report on cases with undescended testicles in which these body parts due to their abnormal state assumed a role of specific psychological import. There is no doubt that the male child concentrates almost exclusively on one part of his genitals, namely, the penis, while the other parts (scrotum, testes) are but peripherally and transiently acknowledged. With reference to this fact Freud commented: "It is remarkable, by the way, what a small degree of interest the other part of the male genitals, the little sac with its contents, arouses in the child."

A number of significant conclusions emerge nevertheless

(1) Certain cases of pathological castration anxiety are explained by a psychosomatic phenomenon (the "testicular vicious cycle") caused by actual and perceived threats to the genitals
(2) Testicular factors may be decisive in various neurotic symptom formations beginning with the early toilet training period. The testicular contribution then takes place along certain preferred pathways of symbolic displacement
(3) Testicular symptoms are observed in many cases of physical and sexual abuse. This finding has application to the treatment of male abuse survivors and to their related sexual dysfunctions
(4) Masturbation involving the testicles is not infrequent in young boys; the most common practice consists of inserting the testes inside the body
(5) The condition of cryptorchism may contribute to psychopathology, especially in the area of masculine self-image; however, cryptorchid boys do not tend to be gender-disordered, effeminate, or prehomosexual
(6) Male body image formation after the phallic stage is a complex emotional and intellectual task involving temporary denial of the inner body and the testicles
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: c h e a p i e on March 12, 2008, 04:04:08 PM

[...] the old order crumbles to dust and a new one is born from the pain and suffering of the transition. [...]


One of Friedrich Schiller's quotes??
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: o n l i n e on March 24, 2008, 03:19:43 PM

I know that right now, it might sound like SciFi craziness, but i'm convinced that we're headed toward a future resembling a cross between Brave New World and Gattica - a world where the beauty of the individual human spirit fighting valiantly against the slings and arrows of life's misfortunes is replaced with a new goal in which technology and innovation are no longer tools for emblazoned demonstrations of the human spirit, but become ends in themselves. [...]


In the latter half of the 20th century, two visionary books cast their shadows over our futures. One was George Orwell's 1949 novel 1984, with its horrific vision of a brutal, mind-controlling totalitarian state -- a book that gave us Big Brother and thoughtcrime and newspeak and the memory hole and the torture palace called the Ministry of Love and the discouraging spectacle of a boot grinding into the human face forever. The other was Aldous Huxley's Brave New World (1932), which proposed a different and softer form of totalitarianism -- one of conformity achieved through engineered, bottle-grown babies and hypnotic persuasion rather than through brutality, of boundless consumption that keeps the wheels of production turning and of officially enforced promiscuity that does away with sexual frustration, of a pre-ordained caste system ranging from a highly intelligent managerial class to a subgroup of dim-witted serfs programmed to love their menial work, and of soma, a drug that confers instant bliss with no side effects.

Which template would win, we wondered. During the cold war, 1984 seemed to have the edge. But when the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, pundits proclaimed the end of history, shopping reigned triumphant, and there was already lots of quasi-soma percolating through society. True, promiscuity had taken a hit from AIDS, but on balance we seemed to be in for a trivial, giggly, drug-enhanced spend-o-rama: Brave New World was winning the race. That picture changed, too, with the attack on New York's twin towers in 2001. Thoughtcrime and the boot grinding into the human face could not be got rid of so easily, after all. The Ministry of Love is back with us, it appears, though it's no longer limited to the lands behind the former iron curtain: the west has its own versions now. On the other hand, Brave New World hasn't gone away. Shopping malls stretch as far as the bulldozer can see. On the wilder fringes of the genetic engineering community, there are true believers prattling of the gene-rich and the gene-poor -- Huxley's alphas and epsilons -- and busily engaging in schemes for genetic enhancement and -- to go one better than Brave New World -- for immortality.

At the time he was writing Brave New World he was still in shock from a visit to the United States, where he was particularly frightened by mass consumerism, its group mentality and its vulgarities. Brave New World achieves an effect not unlike a controlled hallucination. All is surface; there is no depth. In a foreword to a new edition of Brave New World published in 1946, after the horrors of the second world war and Hitler's "final solution", Huxley criticizes himself for having provided only two choices in his 1932 utopia/dystopia -- an "insane life in Utopia" or "the life of a primitive in an Indian village, more human in some respects, but in others hardly less queer and abnormal". (He does, in fact, provide a third sort of life -- that of the intellectual community of misfits in Iceland). The Huxley of 1946 comes up with another sort of utopia, one in which "sanity" is possible. By this, he means a kind of "high utilitarianism" dedicated to a "conscious and rational" pursuit of man's "final end", which is a kind of union with the immanent "Tao or Logos, the transcendent Godhead or Brahmin". No wonder Huxley subsequently got heavily into the mescaline and wrote "The Doors of Perception," thus inspiring a generation of 1960s dopeheads and pop musicians to seek God in altered brain chemistry. His interest in soma, it appears, didn't spring out of nowhere.

Meanwhile, those of us still pottering along on the earthly plane -- and thus still able to read books -- are left with "Brave New World." It was Huxley's genius to present us to ourselves in all our ambiguity. Alone among the animals, we suffer from the future perfect tense. Rover the Dog cannot imagine a future world of dogs in which all fleas will have been eliminated and doghood will finally have achieved its full glorious potential. But thanks to our uniquely structured languages, human beings can imagine such enhanced states for themselves, though they can also question their own grandiose constructions. It's these double-sided imaginative abilities that produce masterpieces of speculation such as "Brave New World."
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: g e o r g i n a on March 25, 2008, 08:55:45 PM

[...] Everyone lauded (before the Tom Cruise thing [...]


(http://img149.imageshack.us/img149/8066/obamahollywood742378yo6.jpg)
Barrack Obama with Tom Cruise
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: e v e n on March 29, 2008, 12:48:13 AM
What's your point, georgina?
Title: Re: Depression and the Legal Profession
Post by: mucho on April 03, 2008, 10:11:47 AM

[...] There are, however, some common themes that do repeat themselves, particularly in lawyers. In lawyers the most common symptoms are closely related to the work we are trying to do. Reduced ability to concentrate is one of the most bothersome symptoms for attorneys. They may have had trouble sleeping and a poor appetite for some time but attorneys often seek treatment when they realize that their ability to concentrate and get their work done is compromised. When you add together reduced ability to concentrate with fatigue and loss of interest in most all activities it is highly likely that the attorney's work is going to suffer at least in quantity if not in quality. In addition, attorneys in this condition often try to remedy the problem by working longer hours to keep up on the quantity of their work. [...]


Lawyers have to remember that you have to be rich to be insane. Losing your mind is a luxury middle class cannot afford.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: becky on April 03, 2008, 11:20:20 AM

[...] He shows the egotism of Freud's "sytem" both in its theoretical and clinical manifestations, pointing to distortions in Freud's use of evidence derived from his patients and his relationships with his colleagues. The book is written for those who have serious questions about the scientific, philosophical, and literary value of Freud. All psychology ultimately stems from Freudian assumptions about the psyche, so Farrell's book would be one shattering the glass dome we live in, the dome built of Freudian constructs that, some people argue, would forever eliminate meaningful human interaction by reducing all actions and all discourse to the mere product of latent desires. [...]


Exactly! Simply put, the scientifically unproven notion is that painful memories are pushed out of normal memory and packed into a powerful unconscious. Then those "forgotten" memories supposedly cause people to act in certain ways. The unproven Freudian-based idea is that if what is hidden in the unconscious can be exposed, then people will know why they behave the way they do and then with such self-knowledge they change their thinking and behaving. Thus, if a "forgotten" memory of abuse is "remembered" in therapy, that serves as an explanation for one's present behavior.

While acknowledging the reality of childhood sexual abuse, Loftus for instance, a research psychologist specializing in memory, believes that in many cases, people create false memories of non-existent abuse, prompted to do so by their psychotherapists. Writing in the first person with coauthor Ketcham (with whom she wrote "Witness for the Defense"), Loftus critiques the tools used by some therapists ("trance work," hypnosis, dream analysis, journal writing, etc.) to "recover" patients' buried memories. She presents numerous case histories involving presumed memories that turned out to be fabrications and reports on a study in which false memories of childhood events were created in men and women volunteers. She also discusses her involvement in the case of Paul Ingram, a Washington deputy sheriff who confessed that he was a priest in a satanic cult and sodomizer of children after his two daughters accused him of sexual abuse; he later retracted his confession but was imprisoned anyway.

Loftus makes it clear that human memories are reconstructions. They are not accurate in a scientific sense, nor meant to be. Memories are reconstructions because what the tribal mind wants is conformity to what is believed by the tribe now. So human memories are intermittently reconstructed to conform to the "truth" as the individual under the influence of the tribe sees it at present. What happened years ago is important to the tribe only as it connects to the present, and it is usually the political present that is important. Therefore memories need not be factually accurate; it is far more important that they be politically correct. To make them politically correct they must be malleable since the political wisdom changes over time. The idea of "repressed" memories fits into this scenario wonderfully. The memory is said to be "repressed" until such time as it is politically necessary to retrieve it and then it is voodooed up and molded to fit the current power politics. It's like the rewriting of history in Orwell's 1984, or medieval trials by fire or water. Through the suggestive and coercive power of therapists (quasi-priests), memories are rewritten to suit the needs of the therapists, and alas, sometimes the needs of a district attorney bent on furthering his or her career at any price.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: F9 on April 05, 2008, 01:10:32 PM

Exactly! Simply put, the scientifically unproven notion is that painful memories are pushed out of normal memory and packed into a powerful unconscious. Then those "forgotten" memories supposedly cause people to act in certain ways. The unproven Freudian-based idea is that if what is hidden in the unconscious can be exposed, then people will know why they behave the way they do and then with such self-knowledge they change their thinking and behaving. Thus, if a "forgotten" memory of abuse is "remembered" in therapy, that serves as an explanation for one's present behavior.

While acknowledging the reality of childhood sexual abuse, Loftus for instance, a research psychologist specializing in memory, believes that in many cases, people create false memories of non-existent abuse, prompted to do so by their psychotherapists. Writing in the first person with coauthor Ketcham (with whom she wrote "Witness for the Defense"), Loftus critiques the tools used by some therapists ("trance work," hypnosis, dream analysis, journal writing, etc.) to "recover" patients' buried memories. She presents numerous case histories involving presumed memories that turned out to be fabrications and reports on a study in which false memories of childhood events were created in men and women volunteers. She also discusses her involvement in the case of Paul Ingram, a Washington deputy sheriff who confessed that he was a priest in a satanic cult and sodomizer of children after his two daughters accused him of sexual abuse; he later retracted his confession but was imprisoned anyway.

Loftus makes it clear that human memories are reconstructions. They are not accurate in a scientific sense, nor meant to be. Memories are reconstructions because what the tribal mind wants is conformity to what is believed by the tribe now. So human memories are intermittently reconstructed to conform to the "truth" as the individual under the influence of the tribe sees it at present. What happened years ago is important to the tribe only as it connects to the present, and it is usually the political present that is important. Therefore memories need not be factually accurate; it is far more important that they be politically correct. To make them politically correct they must be malleable since the political wisdom changes over time. The idea of "repressed" memories fits into this scenario wonderfully. The memory is said to be "repressed" until such time as it is politically necessary to retrieve it and then it is voodooed up and molded to fit the current power politics. It's like the rewriting of history in Orwell's 1984, or medieval trials by fire or water. Through the suggestive and coercive power of therapists (quasi-priests), memories are rewritten to suit the needs of the therapists, and alas, sometimes the needs of a district attorney bent on furthering his or her career at any price.


Not to mention, Becky, that the status of the unconscious mind can be viewed as a social construction -- the unconscious exists because people agree to behave as if it exists.

Probably the most detailed and precise of the various notions of 'unconscious mind' — and the one which most people will immediately think of upon hearing the term — is that developed by Sigmund Freud and his followers. As we know it all too well by now :) consciousness (C) in Freud's topographical view (which was his first of several psychological models of the mind) was a relatively thin perceptual aspect of the mind, whereas the subconscious (S/C) was that merely autonomic function of the brain. The unconscious was considered by Freud throughout the evolution of his psychoanalytic theory a sentient force of will influenced by human drive and yet operating well below the perceptual conscious mind. For Freud, the unconscious is the storehouse of instinctual desires, needs, and psychic actions. While past thoughts and memories may be deleted from immediate consciousness, they direct the thoughts and feelings of the individual from the realm of the unconscious.

(http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/3886/freudsmodelxq4.jpg)

Freud proposed a vertical and hierarchical architecture of human consciousness: the conscious (C) mind, the preconscious (P/C), and the unconscious mind (U/C) -- each lying beneath the other. He believed that significant psychic events take place "below the surface" in the unconscious mind, like hidden messages from the unconscious -- a form of intrapersonal communication out of awareness. He interpreted these events as having both symbolic and actual significance. For psychoanalysis, the unconscious does not include all that is not conscious, rather only what is actively repressed from conscious thought or what the person is averse to knowing consciously. In a sense this view places the self in relationship to their unconscious as an adversary, warring with itself to keep what is unconscious hidden. The therapist is then a mediator trying to allow the unspoken or unspeakable to reveal itself using the tools of psychoanalysis. Messages arising from a conflict between conscious and unconscious are likely to be cryptic. The psychoanalyst is presented as an expert in interpreting those messages. For Freud, the unconscious was a repository for socially unacceptable ideas, wishes or desires, traumatic memories, and painful emotions put out of mind by the mechanism of psychological repression. However, the contents did not necessarily have to be solely negative. In the psychoanalytic view, the unconscious is a force that can only be recognized by its effects — it expresses itself in the symptom. Unconscious thoughts are not directly accessible to ordinary introspection, but are supposed to be capable of being "tapped" and "interpreted" by special methods and techniques such as random association, dream analysis, and verbal slips (commonly known as a Freudian slip), examined and conducted during psychoanalysis.

HOWEVER

There is a great controversy over the concept of an unconscious (U/C) in regard to its scientific or rational validity and whether the U/C exists at all. Karl Popper argued that Freud's theory of the U/C was not falsifiable, and therefore not scientific. He objected not so much to the idea that things happened in our minds that we are unconscious of; he objected to investigations of mind that were not falsifiable. If one could connect every imaginable experimental outcome with Freud's theory of the unconscious mind, then no experiment could refute the theory. In the social sciences, John Watson, considered to be the first American behaviorist, criticizes the idea of an "U/C mind," for similar line of reasoning, and instead focused on observable behaviors rather than on introspection. Unlike Popper, the epistemologist Adolf Grunbaum argues that psychoanalysis could be falsifiable, but its evidence has serious epistemological problems. David Holmes examined 60 years of research about the Freudian concept of "repression," and concluded that there is no positive evidence for this concept. Given the lack of evidence of many Freudian hypotheses, some scientific researchers proposed the existence of unconscious mechanisms that are very different from the Freudian ones. Ludwig Wittgenstein and Jacques Bouveresse argued that Freudian thought exhibits a systemic confusion between reasons and causes: the method of interpretation can give reasons for new meanings, but are useless to find causal relations (which require experimental research). Wittgenstein gave the following example: if we throw objects on a table, and we give free associations and interpretations about those objects, we'll find a meaning for each object and its place, but we won't find the causes.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ismile on April 05, 2008, 01:59:43 PM

Delusions of reference are the ones that are more "fun" -- they generally include experiences such as:

  • feeling that people on television or radio are talking about, or talking directly to them
  • believing that headlines or stories in newspapers are written especially for them
  • having the experience that people (often strangers) drop hints or say things about them behind their back
  • believing that events (even world events) have been deliberately contrived for them, or have special personal significance
  • seeing objects or events as being deliberately set up to convey a special or particular meaning


You think the narcissist's ideas of reference are less "fun"? The narcissist is the centre of the world. He is not merely the centre of HIS world -- as far as he can tell, he is the centre of THE world. This Archimedean delusion is one of the narcissist's most predominant and all-pervasive cognitive distortions. The narcissist feels certain that he is the source of all events around him, the origin of all the emotions of his nearest or dearest, the fount of all knowledge, both the first and the final cause, the beginning as well as the end.

This is understandable.

The narcissist derives his sense of being, his experience of his own existence, and his self-worth from the outside. He mines others for Narcissistic Supply -- adulation, attention, reflection, fear. Their reactions stoke his furnace. Absent Narcissistic Supply -- the narcissist disintegrates and self-annihilates. When unnoticed, he feels empty and worthless. The narcissist MUST delude himself into believing that he is persistently the focus and object of the attentions, intentions, plans, feelings, and stratagems of other people. The narcissist faces a stark choice - either be (or become) the permanent centre of the world, or cease to be altogether. This constant obsession with one's locus, with one's centrality, with one's position as a hub -- leads to referential ideation ("ideas of reference"). This is the conviction that one is at the receiving end of other people's behaviours, speech, and even thoughts. The person suffering from delusional ideas of reference is at the centre and focus of the constant (and confabulated) attentions of an imaginary audience.

When people talk -- the narcissist is convinced that he is the topic of discussion. When they quarrel -- he is most probably the cause. When they smirk -- he is the victim of their ridicule. If they are unhappy -- he made them so. If they are happy -- they are egotists for ignoring him. He is convinced that his behaviour is continuously monitored, criticized, compared, dissected, approved of, or imitated by others. He deems himself so indispensable and important, such a critical component of other people's lives, that his every act, his every word, his every omission -- is bound to upset, hurt, uplift, or satisfy his audience. And, to the narcissist, everyone is but an audience. It all emanates from him -- and it all reverts to him. The narcissist's is a circular and closed universe. His ideas of reference are a natural extension of his primitive defence mechanisms (omnipotence, omniscience, omnipresence). Being omnipresent explains why everyone, everywhere is concerned with him. Being omnipotent and omniscient excludes other, lesser, beings from enjoying the admiration, adulation, and attention of people.

Yet, the attrition afforded by years of tormenting ideas of reference inevitably yields paranoiac thinking. To preserve his egocentric cosmology, the narcissist is compelled to attribute fitting motives and psychological dynamics to others. Such motives and dynamics have little to do with reality. They are PROJECTED by the narcissist UNTO others so as to maintain his personal mythology. In other words, the narcissist attributes to others HIS OWN motives and psychodynamics. And since narcissists are mostly besieged by transformations of aggression (rage, hatred, envy, fear) -- these they often attribute to others as well. Thus, the narcissist tends to interpret other people's behaviour as motivated by anger, fear, hatred, or envy and as directed at him or revolving around him. The narcissist (often erroneously) believes that people discuss him, gossip about him, hate him, defame him, mock him, berate him, underestimate him, envy him, or fear him. He is (often rightly) convinced that he is, to others, the source of hurt, humiliation, impropriety, and indignation. The narcissist "knows" that he is a wonderful, powerful, talented, and entertaining person -- but this only explains why people are jealous and why they seek to undermine and destroy him. Thus, since the narcissist is unable to secure the long term POSITIVE love, admiration, or even attention of his Sources of Supply -- he resorts to a mirror strategy. In other words, the narcissist becomes paranoid. Better to be the object of (often imaginary and always self inflicted) derision, scorn, and bile -- than to be ignored. Being envied is preferable to being treated with indifference. If he cannot be loved -- the narcissist would rather be feared or hated than forgotten.


Great post aria!


I really like it when the material is posted in a bulleted outline form -- it's easier to comprehend it!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: self scripted star on April 09, 2008, 03:17:06 PM

The belief that violence is a reasonable and often necessary route to achieving our aims goes unquestioned in most societies. Violence is thought to be the nature of things. It's what works. It seems inevitable -- the last and, often, the first resort in conflicts. This Myth of Redemptive Violence is the real myth of the modern world. It, and not Judaism or Christianity or Islam, is the dominant religion in our society today.

Walter Wink, a professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in N.Y.C., in an article first published by Bible Society's Spring 1999 issue of The Bible in TransMission, further expalains that our very origin is violence. Killing is in our genes. Humanity is not the originator of evil, but merely finds evil already present and perpetuates it. Human beings are thus naturally incapable of peaceful coexistence. Order must continually be imposed upon us from on high: men over women, masters over slaves, priests over laity, aristocrats over peasants, rulers over people. Unquestioning obedience is the highest virtue, and order the highest religious value.

In short, the Myth of Redemptive Violence is the ideology of conquest. Ours is neither a perfect nor perfectible world, but a theater of perpetual conflict in which the prize goes to the strong. Peace through war, security through strength: these are the core convictions that arise from this ancient historical religion. The Babylonian myth is as universally present today as at any time in its long and bloody history. It is the dominant myth in contemporary America.


The phenomenon of the "inevitability of war" is a self-fulfilling prophecy that has received considerable study. The idea is similar to that discussed by the philosopher William James as The Will to Believe. But James viewed it positively, as the self-validation of a belief. Just as, in Merton's example, the belief that a bank is insolvent may help create the fact, so too on the positive side, confidence in the bank's prospects may help brighten them.

(http://img301.imageshack.us/img301/4358/cleverhansju2.jpg)

Clever Hans is another example. Clever Hans (in German, der Kluge Hans) was a horse that was claimed to have been able to perform arithmetic and other intellectual tasks. After formal investigation in 1907, psychologist Oskar Pfungst demonstrated that the horse was not actually performing these mental tasks, but was watching the reaction of his human observers. Pfungst discovered this artifact in the research methodology, wherein the horse was responding directly to involuntary cues in the body language of the human trainer, who had the faculties to solve each problem. The trainer was entirely unaware that he was providing such cues. Hans was a horse owned by a Mr. von Osten, who was a high school math teacher, an amateur horse trainer and phrenologist, and something of a mystic. Hans was taught to add, subtract, multiply, divide, work with fractions, tell time, keep track of the calendar, differentiate musical tones, and read, spell, and understand German. Von Osten would ask Hans, "If the 8 day of the month comes on a Tuesday, what is the date of the following Friday?" Hans would answer by tapping his foot. Questions could be asked both orally, and in written form. Von Osten exhibited Hans throughout Germany, and never charged admission. Hans's abilities appeared on page 6 of the New York Times.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ACEI on April 11, 2008, 12:43:12 PM

It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, [...]


You don't really say "commanded others to kill" -- the correct way to put it is, "ordered others to kill".
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: etana on April 14, 2008, 11:25:59 AM
RU sure ACEI?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: longshanks on April 14, 2008, 03:04:49 PM
A recent study of well-being and satisfaction showed that universal psychological needs include self-esteem, relatedness to others, authenticity, competence and security. Security is a foundational need – without it, the other universal needs become impossible to satisfy. As well, empirical studies show that one's motivational style (the "why") and what one's goals and values are (the "what") can predict positive or negative mental well-being. Classic humanism sees people as striving to be their best and to improve their society; psychological dissatisfaction results from any impediments to personal and social integration. This has been confirmed by studies that show that goals such as money, power or image do not produce life satisfaction – these 'extrinsic goals' don't produce a good life and may undermine it. Students who identified money, image or influence as being important for life satisfaction consistently scored the lowest well-being in the study, while students identifying intrinsic goals such as personal growth, intimacy and community integration experienced higher well-being. The content of one's goals can affect the degree to which the universal psychological needs are met: intrinsic goals maximize one's opportunity to fulfill these needs, while extrinsic goals tend to replace or distract from the pursuit of satisfying goals and thus fulfillment of needs.

These studies raise clear implications for legal education and culture. If the law "success" paradigm is focused on grades, external recognition, money or position, tension and insecurity result, thus minimizing the satisfaction and well-being of law students and lawyers. As well, the drive for external goals supplants drives for growth, actualization, intimacy and community. Anxiety and depression is thus likely to result, since, regardless of how successful you are under this paradigm, internal satisfaction will never be achieved. The longitudinal study of first year law students conducted by the author and Kennon Sheldon confirms these conclusions. Arriving first-years had healthier well-being, values and motives than other undergraduates; within 6 months, there were marked decreases in well-being and life-satisfaction, with marked increases in depression, negative affect, and physical symptoms. Overall motivation and valuing patterns shifted to extrinsic factors such as appearance and image, and away from altruism and community orientation.

These findings also refute the suggestion that the problems of law students is a result of self-selection, since the group began healthier, happier and with more optimal motivations. As well, students who performed the best according to the law school 'success' paradigm – i.e. had the highest grades – immediately shifted away from service-oriented to lucrative, high-status career choices, even those who initially had the healthier, more intrinsic goals than other law students.

There are several attitudes and educational practices that can be reviewed to identify those which most negatively affect students. First, the predilection to work students exceptionally hard: consistently long hours of high-demand work drain personal resources and encourage students to ignore biological needs. Instead of preparing students for their professional obligations, it teaches students to accept constant stress as part of a law career. Once so taught, students are likely to make choices that continue that stress in their careers. Second, the contingent-worth and top-ten percent paradigms create tension by generating insecurity about future employment, competition between peers, a sense that one's worth is only as good as one's transcript and resume, and that, regardless of the rhetoric of professionalism, that personal character, values, ideals and intentions are irrelevant in the practice of law. Schools with a mandatory or strongly suggested grading curve aggravate this effect by creating the impression that the institution is pitting students against each other. Third, traditional teaching methods and overreliance on objective analysis promotes isolation of students from professors and each other, and encourages the abandonment of personal values and instincts in order to "think like a lawyer". Law students get the message that what they believe, at their core, is irrelevant and inappropriate in legal discourse. It is possible to teach in a way that complements, rather than supplants, a student's senses of self, values and beliefs.

As we think through the implications of declining happiness, psychological health and social consciousness in students and the profession, we must allocate resources and time to preventing or alleviating these problems. We need to identify individual and institutional practices that tend to undermine basic needs and values in order to amend them, and to ask what can be done to promote the basic universal psychological needs in students, how intrinsic motivation can be supported when teaching legal fundamentals, and how optimal human values in students can be promoted.

One direct approach to breaking institutional inertia is to publish empirical studies on the subject, which often dumbfounds faculty and students. Objective quantification of what you already know can have a powerful effect. After clarifying the need for attention to the problem, an overview of possible solutions is necessary. People need to realize that the American dream and the extrinsic goals of money, power and status are failed approaches to happiness; being true to oneself, helping others, maintaining close relationships and creating community are effective ways of creating a positive life experience.

Teachers must first reflect on their own experiences for fundamental needs, internal motivations, and intrinsic goal pursuits. Such experiences should be providing most of their life satisfaction, and this personal perspective will give confidence to professors in raising the topic with students. Students aware of the research findings will be able to make informed choices about priorities, careers, and the distribution of time in law school, and later, in their careers. As the creators of the legal profession, professors have an obligation to broaden the institutional service mission to include at least scientific research relating to the health, happiness and life satisfaction of students. They need to remind students that thinking 'like a lawyer' is a fundamentally negative worldview, though a useful tool. If applied generally in life, it will have undermining effects.

No *&^%?  And?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Silence on November 16, 2007, 11:18:44 AM

It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, but he did not do anybody himself; Hitler, on the other hand, is known to have killed with his own hand.


[...] Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. [...]


What was the genesis of Hitler's evil? Many theories are given ranging from:

- born with one testicle
- testicle and/or part of penis bitten off by a goat
- overindulgent mother
- abused child with low self-esteem
- abusive father whose family secret was he had been sired by a Jew
- mother died in 1907 from cancer unsuccessfully treated by Jewish doctor
- syphilis
- syphilis caused by Jewish prostitute
- bad parenting
- Jewish suspect
- mental illness
- physical illness
Title: Grab your couch: Cruise is returning to 'Oprah'
Post by: lali on April 25, 2008, 09:15:52 AM

(http://img149.imageshack.us/img149/8066/obamahollywood742378yo6.jpg)
Barrack Obama with Tom Cruise


CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)

Tom Cruise is slated to return to "The Oprah Winfrey Show," three years after a couch-jumping appearance. Tom Cruise is scheduled to return to "The Oprah Winfrey Show," nearly three years after a couch-jumping appearance that spawned countless YouTube parodies and late-night jokes. The two-part show will coincide with the 25th anniversary of Cruise's booty-shaking turn in the film "Risky Business." Friends and colleagues will surprise Cruise with taped messages honoring his work in movies, according to a statement Thursday from Harpo Productions. Winfrey will interview Cruise from his home in Telluride, Colo., for the first show on May 2, which will cover his "family, his life and the future," Harpo said. Then on May 5, Cruise will appear in Winfrey's Chicago studio. Cruise became the butt of jokes after a May 2005 appearance on Winfrey's show, where he repeatedly jumped on the talk-show host's couch, saying his love for then-new girlfriend Katie Holmes was "beyond cool." Cruise and Holmes became parents in April 2006 with the birth of their daughter, Suri, and married in Italy in November 2006.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: brace on April 29, 2008, 11:27:08 AM

Indeed, lushy!


The domino effect?!
Title: Re: Grab your couch: Cruise is returning to 'Oprah'
Post by: dru on May 15, 2008, 12:37:36 PM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!
Title: Re: Grab your couch: Cruise is returning to 'Oprah'
Post by: revani on May 19, 2008, 11:46:03 AM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!
 

How old was he when this pic was taken? Anyone?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: nmla on May 27, 2008, 10:18:14 AM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!


Hahaha! ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: gent on May 30, 2008, 01:38:36 PM
Tom Cruise is nothing when it comes to closet cases. Have you heard about Elvis Costello?

(http://gaynewsbits.com/images/elton-john-elvis-costello.jpg)

And to think he's a bigot and a racist (but what I am talking about -- is it not that the biggest bigots are those who can easily be bigoted)

During a drunken argument with Stephen Stills and Bonnie Bramlett in a Columbus, Ohio, Holiday Inn hotel bar, in the late 1970s Costello referred to James Brown as a "jive-ass n i g g e r," then upped the ante by pronouncing Ray Charles a "blind, ignorant n i g g e r."

A contrite Costello apologised at a New York City press conference a few days later, claiming that he had been drunk and had been attempting to be obnoxious in order to bring the conversation to a swift conclusion, not anticipating that Bramlett would bring his comments to the press. According to Costello, "it became necessary for me to outrage these people with about the most obnoxious and offensive remarks that I could muster." In his liner notes for the expanded version of Get Happy!!, Costello writes that some time after the incident he had declined an offer to meet Charles out of guilt and embarrassment, though Charles himself had forgiven Costello ("Drunken talk isn't meant to be printed in the paper"). In a Rolling Stone interview with Greil Marcus, he recounts an incident when Bruce Thomas was introduced to Michael Jackson as Costello's bass player and Jackson said, "I don't dig that guy...".
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: laferson on June 05, 2008, 10:22:13 PM
I thought we were supposed to be talking about a law school topic--Namely, 'INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL'.  It's pretty neat some people fancy themselves as psychologists, while also possessing a strange inability to write concisely,but is it really that hard to address a law topic in a meaningful way...
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: premiermaw on June 14, 2008, 02:43:57 PM

Indeed, lushy!


The domino effect?!


Looks like it, brace!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: caca on June 19, 2008, 01:27:32 PM

RU sure ACEI?


Sarcastic, etana?
Title: Re: Grab your couch: Cruise is returning to 'Oprah'
Post by: we are watching you on July 02, 2008, 12:12:14 PM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!


The South Park Episode: Treading the Boundary of Parody and Satire

The relevant "South Park" episode -- entitled "Trapped in the Closet" -- self-consciously skirts the outermost edges of the First Amendment's protection for parody. A court would probably deem it constitutionally protected, but only barely. In the episode, the animated version of Cruise literally goes into a closet, and won't come out. Other characters beg him to "come out of the closet," including the animated version of his ex-wife, Nicole Kidman. The Kidman character promises Cruise that if he comes out of the closet, neither she nor "Katie" will judge him. But the Cruise character claims he isn't "in the closet," even though he plainly is. Defamation requires a "statement of fact" -- and for this reason, most parody, because of its fictional nature, falls outside defamation law by definition. But this is the rare parody that, fairly read, does make a statement of fact.

No one could miss that the episode's creators are taking a stance and making a statement -- that the real Cruise is gay and hiding it. The use of the euphemism "in the closet" -- used to refer to someone who is homosexual but who has not admitted his or her homosexuality to friends, family, or the public -- is transparent. Interestingly, the episode itself indicates that its creators know well that they may be defaming Cruise, and they know of his litigious history. The joke disclaimer preceding the episode announces that "All characters and events on this show -- even those based on real persons -- are entirely fictional." At the end of the episode, the Cruise character threatens to bring a suit (not on the gay issue, but in defense of Scientology) "in England" -- which lacks a formal equivalent of the First Amendment. And all the credits at the end use the pseudonyms "John Smith" and "Jane Smith." Since the episode does indeed make a "statement of fact," the parody exception to defamation law won't save "South Park." Thus, the creators' only weapon against a possible suit by Cruise is a First Amendment defense. Fortunately for them, the Supreme Court has interpreted the defense very broadly.
Title: Re: Grab your couch: Cruise is returning to 'Oprah'
Post by: we are watching you on July 02, 2008, 12:15:24 PM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!


Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?
Title: Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could
Post by: we re watching you on July 02, 2008, 12:22:13 PM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!


Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?
Title: Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could
Post by: we re watching you on July 02, 2008, 12:24:13 PM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!


Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?

A recent episode of the television animated comedy "South Park" mocked Tom Cruise -- suggesting that he is homosexual, and lying to hide that fact. Could Cruise bring a defamation suit against the show? In the past, Cruise has sued those who have made the very same claim. Indeed, when Cruise was married to Nicole Kidman, the couple made a point of doing so: In 1997, Kidman told Ladies' Home Journal that when reports claimed their marriage was a sham, "[W]e are going to sue over it. It gets to a point where you have to protect your children." Now that Cruise is set to marry Katie Holmes, who's pregnant with his child, it seems unlikely that he will take a different view. Could Cruise successfully sue "South Park"? And more broadly, should he continue his campaign of directly combating the claim that he's homosexual, or rethink the ethics of bringing such lawsuits?

The relevant "South Park" episode -- entitled "Trapped in the Closet" -- self-consciously skirts the outermost edges of the First Amendment's protection for parody. A court would probably deem it constitutionally protected, but only barely. Defamation requires a "statement of fact" -- and for this reason, most parody, because of its fictional nature, falls outside defamation law by definition. But this is the rare parody that, fairly read, does make a statement of fact. In the episode, the animated version of Cruise literally goes into a closet, and won't come out. Other characters beg him to "come out of the closet," including the animated version of his ex-wife, Nicole Kidman. The Kidman character promises Cruise that if he comes out of the closet, neither she nor "Katie" will judge him. But the Cruise character claims he isn't "in the closet," even though he plainly is. No one could miss that the episode's creators are taking a stance and making a statement -- that the real Cruise is gay and hiding it. The use of the euphemism "in the closet" -- used to refer to someone who is homosexual but who has not admitted his or her homosexuality to friends, family, or the public -- is transparent. Interestingly, the episode itself indicates that its creators know well that they may be defaming Cruise, and they know of his litigious history. The joke disclaimer preceding the episode announces that "All characters and events on this show -- even those based on real persons -- are entirely fictional." At the end of the episode, the Cruise character threatens to bring a suit (not on the gay issue, but in defense of Scientology) "in England" -- which lacks a formal equivalent of the First Amendment. And all the credits at the end use the pseudonyms "John Smith" and "Jane Smith." Since the episode does indeed make a "statement of fact," the parody exception to defamation law won't save "South Park." Thus, the creators' only weapon against a possible suit by Cruise is a First Amendment defense. Fortunately for them, the Supreme Court has interpreted the defense very broadly.

The Broad First Amendment Protection for Parody and Satire

In Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music Inc., Justice Souter, writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, found that a 2 Live Crew song counted as parody. In so doing, Justice Souter quoted then-U.S. District Judge Pierre Leval as follows: "First Amendment protections do not apply only to those who speak clearly, whose jokes are funny, and whose parodies succeed." On this logic, the First Amendment gives breathing room to creative works even when they fail in their goals. Thus, here, the "South Park" episode is protected even if its literalization of the "in the closet" metaphor won't make a single viewer chuckle. The point is that it was at least trying to make people laugh. And probably, the very silliness of the literalization -- the fact that it was the least creative thing the creators possibly could have done -- did indeed amuse some viewers. "South Park's" appeal, after all, isn't its subtlety. But does it make a different that Cruise's would be a defamation case? Judge Leval originally stated this principle in the trademark context. And when Justice Souter applied this principle in the Campbell case, he did so in the copyright context

Courts, I believe, would probably invoke the same rule in the defamation context, too, for in the end the principle is about creating a healthy margin of error for First Amendment-protected speakers and writers, and that concern is present in all these different areas of law. This is consistent with the principle the Supreme Court has frequently espoused that the First Amendment is in a "preferred position" in the legal hierarchy -- meaning that laws or government actions that infringe on free speech not likely to be upheld.

In the defamation context, though, the rule's application -- though correct, as a matter of constitutional law -- may be especially unfortunate for the plaintiff.

It's one thing to co-opt part of a song, or use a trademark, in a parody: Without using part of the original, the parody won't work at all; no one will know what its target is.
Title: Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could
Post by: we re watching you on July 02, 2008, 12:25:00 PM

CHICAGO (AP) -- Oprah might want to nail down her furniture.

(http://img170.imageshack.us/img170/4879/artcruiseapan2.jpg)


I don't like Tom Cruise in general, but I must admit he looks good in this AP photo!


Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?

A recent episode of the television animated comedy "South Park" mocked Tom Cruise -- suggesting that he is homosexual, and lying to hide that fact. Could Cruise bring a defamation suit against the show? In the past, Cruise has sued those who have made the very same claim. Indeed, when Cruise was married to Nicole Kidman, the couple made a point of doing so: In 1997, Kidman told Ladies' Home Journal that when reports claimed their marriage was a sham, "[W]e are going to sue over it. It gets to a point where you have to protect your children." Now that Cruise is set to marry Katie Holmes, who's pregnant with his child, it seems unlikely that he will take a different view. Could Cruise successfully sue "South Park"? And more broadly, should he continue his campaign of directly combating the claim that he's homosexual, or rethink the ethics of bringing such lawsuits?

The relevant "South Park" episode -- entitled "Trapped in the Closet" -- self-consciously skirts the outermost edges of the First Amendment's protection for parody. A court would probably deem it constitutionally protected, but only barely. Defamation requires a "statement of fact" -- and for this reason, most parody, because of its fictional nature, falls outside defamation law by definition. But this is the rare parody that, fairly read, does make a statement of fact. In the episode, the animated version of Cruise literally goes into a closet, and won't come out. Other characters beg him to "come out of the closet," including the animated version of his ex-wife, Nicole Kidman. The Kidman character promises Cruise that if he comes out of the closet, neither she nor "Katie" will judge him. But the Cruise character claims he isn't "in the closet," even though he plainly is. No one could miss that the episode's creators are taking a stance and making a statement -- that the real Cruise is gay and hiding it. The use of the euphemism "in the closet" -- used to refer to someone who is homosexual but who has not admitted his or her homosexuality to friends, family, or the public -- is transparent. Interestingly, the episode itself indicates that its creators know well that they may be defaming Cruise, and they know of his litigious history. The joke disclaimer preceding the episode announces that "All characters and events on this show -- even those based on real persons -- are entirely fictional." At the end of the episode, the Cruise character threatens to bring a suit (not on the gay issue, but in defense of Scientology) "in England" -- which lacks a formal equivalent of the First Amendment. And all the credits at the end use the pseudonyms "John Smith" and "Jane Smith." Since the episode does indeed make a "statement of fact," the parody exception to defamation law won't save "South Park." Thus, the creators' only weapon against a possible suit by Cruise is a First Amendment defense. Fortunately for them, the Supreme Court has interpreted the defense very broadly.

The Broad First Amendment Protection for Parody and Satire

In Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music Inc., Justice Souter, writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, found that a 2 Live Crew song counted as parody. In so doing, Justice Souter quoted then-U.S. District Judge Pierre Leval as follows: "First Amendment protections do not apply only to those who speak clearly, whose jokes are funny, and whose parodies succeed." On this logic, the First Amendment gives breathing room to creative works even when they fail in their goals. Thus, here, the "South Park" episode is protected even if its literalization of the "in the closet" metaphor won't make a single viewer chuckle. The point is that it was at least trying to make people laugh. And probably, the very silliness of the literalization -- the fact that it was the least creative thing the creators possibly could have done -- did indeed amuse some viewers. "South Park's" appeal, after all, isn't its subtlety. But does it make a different that Cruise's would be a defamation case? Judge Leval originally stated this principle in the trademark context. And when Justice Souter applied this principle in the Campbell case, he did so in the copyright context. Courts, I believe, would probably invoke the same rule in the defamation context, too, for in the end the principle is about creating a healthy margin of error for First Amendment-protected speakers and writers, and that concern is present in all these different areas of law. This is consistent with the principle the Supreme Court has frequently espoused that the First Amendment is in a "preferred position" in the legal hierarchy -- meaning that laws or government actions that infringe on free speech not likely to be upheld. In the defamation context, though, the rule's application -- though correct, as a matter of constitutional law -- may be especially unfortunate for the plaintiff. It's one thing to co-opt part of a song, or use a trademark, in a parody: Without using part of the original, the parody won't work at all; no one will know what its target is.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: werewatchingu on July 02, 2008, 12:38:19 PM
Sorry about the multiple posts -- there was something wrong with the site! :)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: A d r i a n on July 04, 2008, 11:52:03 AM
we are watching you - you didn't really need to apologize for such a thing - I mean this board is "just for fun," it's not some kind of formal environment where you're supposed to "play it cool" and the like :)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Yanni on July 05, 2008, 01:33:19 PM
Tom Cruise is nothing when it comes to closet cases. Have you heard about Elvis Costello?

(http://gaynewsbits.com/images/elton-john-elvis-costello.jpg)

And to think he's a bigot and a racist (but what I am talking about -- is it not that the biggest bigots are those who can easily be bigoted)

During a drunken argument with Stephen Stills and Bonnie Bramlett in a Columbus, Ohio, Holiday Inn hotel bar, in the late 1970s Costello referred to James Brown as a "jive-ass n i g g e r," then upped the ante by pronouncing Ray Charles a "blind, ignorant n i g g e r."

A contrite Costello apologised at a New York City press conference a few days later, claiming that he had been drunk and had been attempting to be obnoxious in order to bring the conversation to a swift conclusion, not anticipating that Bramlett would bring his comments to the press. According to Costello, "it became necessary for me to outrage these people with about the most obnoxious and offensive remarks that I could muster." In his liner notes for the expanded version of Get Happy!!, Costello writes that some time after the incident he had declined an offer to meet Charles out of guilt and embarrassment, though Charles himself had forgiven Costello ("Drunken talk isn't meant to be printed in the paper"). In a Rolling Stone interview with Greil Marcus, he recounts an incident when Bruce Thomas was introduced to Michael Jackson as Costello's bass player and Jackson said, "I don't dig that guy..."


Elvis Costello is an old fart ... no one cares to talk about him anymore ..
Title: Re: Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could
Post by: Joycee on July 05, 2008, 07:13:05 PM

Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?


Here it is the entire thing

Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?

By JULIE HILDEN
julhil@aol.com

(http://images.findlaw.com/writ/julie.hilden.jpg)

Tuesday, Dec. 06, 2005

A recent episode of the television animated comedy "South Park" mocked Tom Cruise -- suggesting that he is homosexual, and lying to hide that fact. Could Cruise bring a defamation suit against the show? In the past, Cruise has sued those who have made the very same claim. Indeed, when Cruise was married to Nicole Kidman, the couple made a point of doing so: In 1997, Kidman told Ladies' Home Journal that when reports claimed their marriage was a sham, "[W]e are going to sue over it. It gets to a point where you have to protect your children." Now that Cruise is set to marry Katie Holmes, who's pregnant with his child, it seems unlikely that he will take a different view. Could Cruise successfully sue "South Park"? And more broadly, should he continue his campaign of directly combating the claim that he's homosexual, or rethink the ethics of bringing such lawsuits?

The South Park Episode: Treading the Boundary of Parody and Satire

The relevant "South Park" episode -- entitled "Trapped in the Closet" -- self-consciously skirts the outermost edges of the First Amendment's protection for parody. A court would probably deem it constitutionally protected, but only barely. Defamation requires a "statement of fact" -- and for this reason, most parody, because of its fictional nature, falls outside defamation law by definition. But this is the rare parody that, fairly read, does make a statement of fact. In the episode, the animated version of Cruise literally goes into a closet, and won't come out. Other characters beg him to "come out of the closet," including the animated version of his ex-wife, Nicole Kidman. The Kidman character promises Cruise that if he comes out of the closet, neither she nor "Katie" will judge him. But the Cruise character claims he isn't "in the closet," even though he plainly is. No one could miss that the episode's creators are taking a stance and making a statement -- that the real Cruise is gay and hiding it. The use of the euphemism "in the closet" -- used to refer to someone who is homosexual but who has not admitted his or her homosexuality to friends, family, or the public -- is transparent. Interestingly, the episode itself indicates that its creators know well that they may be defaming Cruise, and they know of his litigious history. The joke disclaimer preceding the episode announces that "All characters and events on this show -- even those based on real persons -- are entirely fictional." At the end of the episode, the Cruise character threatens to bring a suit (not on the gay issue, but in defense of Scientology) "in England" -- which lacks a formal equivalent of the First Amendment. And all the credits at the end use the pseudonyms "John Smith" and "Jane Smith." Since the episode does indeed make a "statement of fact," the parody exception to defamation law won't save "South Park." Thus, the creators' only weapon against a possible suit by Cruise is a First Amendment defense. Fortunately for them, the Supreme Court has interpreted the defense very broadly.

The Broad First Amendment Protection for Parody and Satire

In Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music Inc., Justice Souter, writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, found that a 2 Live Crew song counted as parody. In so doing, Justice Souter quoted then-U.S. District Judge Pierre Leval as follows: "First Amendment protections do not apply only to those who speak clearly, whose jokes are funny, and whose parodies succeed." On this logic, the First Amendment gives breathing room to creative works even when they fail in their goals. Thus, here, the "South Park" episode is protected even if its literalization of the "in the closet" metaphor won't make a single viewer chuckle. The point is that it was at least trying to make people laugh. And probably, the very silliness of the literalization -- the fact that it was the least creative thing the creators possibly could have done -- did indeed amuse some viewers. "South Park's" appeal, after all, isn't its subtlety. But does it make a different that Cruise's would be a defamation case? Judge Leval originally stated this principle in the trademark context. And when Justice Souter applied this principle in the Campbell case, he did so in the copyright context.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Joycee on July 05, 2008, 07:42:05 PM
Courts, I believe, would probably invoke the same rule in the defamation context, too, for in the end the principle is about creating a healthy margin of error for First Amendment-protected speakers and writers, and that concern is present in all these different areas of law. This is consistent with the principle the Supreme Court has frequently espoused that the First Amendment is in a "preferred position" in the legal hierarchy -- meaning that laws or government actions that infringe on free speech not likely to be upheld. In the defamation context, though, the rule's application -- though correct, as a matter of constitutional law -- may be especially unfortunate for the plaintiff. It's one thing to co-opt part of a song, or use a trademark, in a parody: Without using part of the original, the parody won't work at all; no one will know what its target is. But it's another thing to embed what would otherwise be a defamatory statement in a work of fiction: This is defamation in satire's clothing, and it's only in order to protect true satire that that the Constitution has been held to also protect this lesser creature. Generally, courts don't want to get into the business of picking out nuggets of fact from an otherwise fictional account. The upshot, though -- and courts know this, and accept this cost in the service of free speech -- is that parody and satire inevitably may become a refuge for rogues who seek to defame without liability. That seems to me to be just what's happening with respect to the "South Park" episode.

Should Plaintiffs Argue that Simply Being Considered Gay Is Defamatory?

In sum, a Cruise-versus-"South Park" suit would almost certainly be dismissed on First Amendment grounds. Moreover, such a suit -- depending on the way it was framed -- might arguably be as ethically problematic, as it is legally problematic, at least for those who believe that bias against homosexuals is wrong. Cruise has chosen, in the past, not only to challenge allegations that he cheated or lied to cover up his alleged homosexuality, but also to directly challenge allegations that he is gay. In 2001, Cruise's attorney Bert Fields was quoted saying to E! Online, that "[Cruise] is a great respecter of homosexual rights, but he's not gay, and he's ready to prove this in court. Tom is tired of it and it hurts his children. It's something that will be there forever. And damn it, he's going to stop it." (Emphasis added). If Cruise is truly a great respecter of homosexual rights, then to comport with his own ethical beliefs, he should have been more careful in crafting his past suit. Cruise already had a strong suit based on suggestions that he was an adulterer and a liar -- cheating on his wife and misrepresenting the character of their marriage to the public. Did he need to also directly take aim at the statement that he was gay?

Imagine a white person in the Jim Crow South suing to counter rumors that he was hiding African-American ancestry, and the problem with such a claim becomes plain: The purpose of the claim is to restore the plaintiff to a prior, undeserved position of societal privilege, so he can avoid the maltreatment, racism -- and if he is a racist himself, the shame -- that he would otherwise suffer. The claim itself, then, rests on a malicious societal hierarchy. The same is arguably true of a claim by a straight person that he has been falsely labeled as gay: Such a claim takes advantage of the courts so that one person can escape bias that others unfairly suffer. It also caters to societal bias by saying, in effect, "Stop thinking less of me; I'm not really gay." But imagine, again, the parallel claim: "Stop thinking less of me, I'm not really African-American."

Should Courts Stop Deeming Claims of Homosexuality Defamatory?

Of course, not all the responsibility can be put on plaintiffs who choose to sue to combat claims that they are gay. Some must also lie on courts that continue to deem allegations of homosexuality defamatory. Currently, polling shows that a large percentage of the country favors gay civil unions -- as opposed to "gay marriage -- which would grant gay couples many of the same rights as married couples. Meanwhile, highly popular television shows feature positive gay themes -- such as "Will and Grace," "Dawson's Creek," "Sex and the City," and "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy." In this day and age, then, it's worth considering whether labeling people as gay really defames them, such that their reputations are truly damaged. Perhaps a straight person's being falsely considered gay should remain an eye-opener, and cease to be a tort. (Employment discrimination based on perceived sexual orientation, whether the perception is false or true, is -- and should be -- separately illegal in some jurisdictions.) In my view, a "straight-person's privilege" isn't the kind the courts should be protecting. Indeed, a friend of mine who's a practicing First Amendment lawyer believes this so strongly, he won't, as a matter of professional ethics, argue a case for libel-by-claim-of-homosexuality in court. He'd rather be on the right side of history, and decline. While Tom Cruise won't be able to successfully sue South Park for its satire, he may have the option to sue others who claim he is gay in the future. When he does have this opportunity, he may want to think twice -- and, at a minimum, rephrase his suit to focus on false claims that he is a liar, not false claims that he is gay.

_____________________________ __________
Julie Hilden, a FindLaw columnist, graduated from Yale Law School in 1992. She practiced First Amendment law at the D.C. law firm of Williams & Connolly from 1996-99. Hilden's first novel, 3, was published recently. In reviewing 3, Kirkus Reviews praised Hilden's "rather uncanny abilities," and Counterpunch called it "a must read.... a work of art." Hilden's website, www.juliehilden.com, includes free MP3 and text downloads of the novel's first chapter.

http://writ.news.findlaw.com/hilden/20051206.html
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: elvira on July 07, 2008, 12:55:22 PM

we are watching you - you didn't really need to apologize for such a thing - I mean this board is "just for fun," it's not some kind of formal environment where you're supposed to "play it cool" and the like :)


Great signature, Adrian!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: subrosa on July 10, 2008, 12:20:45 PM

While Tom Cruise won't be able to successfully sue South Park for its satire, he may have the option to sue others who claim he is gay in the future. When he does have this opportunity, he may want to think twice -- and, at a minimum, rephrase his suit to focus on false claims that he is a liar, not false claims that he is gay.


Thanks for posting this Joycee cuz it looks like Ms. Hilden has made some very interesting comments on Cruise being or not gay.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: QIR on July 19, 2008, 04:25:06 PM
Exactly, subrosa, she's getting so close that it makes you think she probably believes it's a crime for Cruise to even think to go gay.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: mother in law on July 21, 2008, 02:12:08 PM
In any event, Cruise and his lawyers are not known to have employed roundabout tactics. Oh BTW, what did you guys think about this one:

http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/2496611/detail.html
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: godo on July 22, 2008, 03:38:18 PM

In any event, Cruise and his lawyers are not known to have employed roundabout tactics. Oh BTW, what did you guys think about this one:

http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/2496611/detail.html


Well, mother, Cruise's not been accused of raping anyone, just of being gay.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Tacoma on July 23, 2008, 02:42:23 PM

In any event, Cruise and his lawyers are not known to have employed roundabout tactics. Oh BTW, what did you guys think about this one:

http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/2496611/detail.html


Well, mother, Cruise's not been accused of raping anyone [...]


Can he?
Title: "This is not about money"
Post by: sigh mere on July 25, 2008, 06:45:46 PM

There is much anecdotal basis for concern about the collective distress and unhappiness of law students and lawyers.

[...]

3) The American dream: The belief that financial affluence, influence, recognition and other external symbols of achievement are what is good in life, and that academic success in law school will lead to these things.

[...]


This is actually the most important reason. Those who say lawyering and the stress it creates does not stem from money are acting in the same manner this woman did:

Title: Re: "This is not about money"
Post by: doublevision on July 26, 2008, 07:04:57 PM

There is much anecdotal basis for concern about the collective distress and unhappiness of law students and lawyers.

[...]

3) The American dream: The belief that financial affluence, influence, recognition and other external symbols of achievement are what is good in life, and that academic success in law school will lead to these things.

[...]


This is actually the most important reason. Those who say lawyering and the stress it creates does not stem from money are acting in the same manner this woman did:


You mean this woman:

(http://images.usatoday.com/news/_photos/2004/08/27/inside-soulias.jpg)
Audra Soulias appears at a press conference Thursday in a Chicago law office.

Audra Soulias, 28, filed a civil lawsuit against Smith, 43, claiming he bought her drinks while she was celebrating her birthday in January 1999 and later took her to his house, dragged her upstairs and assaulted her.

"This is not about money. I do not wish to see one more woman victimized by this individual," Soulias said at a news conference Thursday. "Enough is enough."

Smith, who was cleared of rape charges in Florida in 1991, said Soulias demanded a $3 million payoff in exchange for not going to court. He said in a statement after the lawsuit was filed Wednesday that "family and personal history have made me unusually vulnerable to these kinds of charges." In a statement following his accuser's new conference, Smith accused Soulias' lawyer of presenting "baseless claims in the most sensationalistic manner. While I did date Ms. Soulias for several months in 1999, the accusations being made are absolutely false and misleading." Soulias attorney Kevin O'Reilly acknowledged that Soulias had continued to work for Smith until June 1999 and during that time had consensual sex with him on a number of occasions. He declined to comment on whether he had asked Smith for $3 million before filing the lawsuit, saying he had given his word not to discuss any talks between the two sides. O'Reilly said Soulias, who once worked for Smith as a personal assistant, never went to the police about the alleged incident. Private investigator Paul Ciolino, who is working for Soulias, said that she told friends and others her story, but they warned her not to file a lawsuit. "I've repeatedly been warned by everyone I've sought guidance from not to do this," Soulias said. "I've been warned that I, my family and anyone affiliated with this case will be harassed, ruined and destroyed for bringing these allegations to light." She said she would not have filed the suit had Smith not telephoned her in January and left voicemails, which she believed were intimidating. She said the messages came after she told her story to an investigator who had been retained by the board of Smith's Center for International Rehabilitation, which helps victims of land mines. "On Jan. 16, 1999, my innocence was involuntarily taken from me by someone I trusted and respected," Soulias said. "It was taken from me in a manner that will haunt me to the day I die." O'Reilly described the January 1999 incident as an assault that stopped short of sexual intercourse. He said that until then Soulias had lived with her family and had never had a boyfriend or any sexual experience. In 1991, a jury in West Palm Beach, Fla., acquitted Smith of sexual assault and battery on a 30-year-old woman he met in a nightclub. He said his sexual relations with the woman, Patricia Bowman, had been consensual. According to the lawsuit filed Wednesday, Soulias said Smith called her the morning after the incident and left apologetic voicemails. Soulias was accompanied at Thursday's news conference by her younger sister, Melissa, who said that she had heard the voicemails. O'Reilly said the voicemails had not been preserved. The lawsuit asks for at least $50,000 in damages, the minimum that such a court action must demand under Illinois law. Smith's mother is former Ambassador to Ireland Jean Kennedy Smith. He is the nephew of Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and the late President Kennedy.
Title: Re: "This is not about money"
Post by: situation on July 27, 2008, 01:40:12 PM

There is much anecdotal basis for concern about the collective distress and unhappiness of law students and lawyers.

[...]

3) The American dream: The belief that financial affluence, influence, recognition and other external symbols of achievement are what is good in life, and that academic success in law school will lead to these things.

[...]


This is actually the most important reason. Those who say lawyering and the stress it creates does not stem from money are acting in the same manner this woman did:


You mean this woman:

(http://images.usatoday.com/news/_photos/2004/08/27/inside-soulias.jpg)
Audra Soulias appears at a press conference Thursday in a Chicago law office.

Audra Soulias, 28, filed a civil lawsuit against Smith, 43, claiming he bought her drinks while she was celebrating her birthday in January 1999 and later took her to his house, dragged her upstairs and assaulted her.

"This is not about money. I do not wish to see one more woman victimized by this individual," Soulias said at a news conference Thursday. "Enough is enough."

Smith, who was cleared of rape charges in Florida in 1991, said Soulias demanded a $3 million payoff in exchange for not going to court. He said in a statement after the lawsuit was filed Wednesday that "family and personal history have made me unusually vulnerable to these kinds of charges." In a statement following his accuser's new conference, Smith accused Soulias' lawyer of presenting "baseless claims in the most sensationalistic manner. While I did date Ms. Soulias for several months in 1999, the accusations being made are absolutely false and misleading." Soulias attorney Kevin O'Reilly acknowledged that Soulias had continued to work for Smith until June 1999 and during that time had consensual sex with him on a number of occasions. He declined to comment on whether he had asked Smith for $3 million before filing the lawsuit, saying he had given his word not to discuss any talks between the two sides. O'Reilly said Soulias, who once worked for Smith as a personal assistant, never went to the police about the alleged incident. Private investigator Paul Ciolino, who is working for Soulias, said that she told friends and others her story, but they warned her not to file a lawsuit. "I've repeatedly been warned by everyone I've sought guidance from not to do this," Soulias said. "I've been warned that I, my family and anyone affiliated with this case will be harassed, ruined and destroyed for bringing these allegations to light." She said she would not have filed the suit had Smith not telephoned her in January and left voicemails, which she believed were intimidating. She said the messages came after she told her story to an investigator who had been retained by the board of Smith's Center for International Rehabilitation, which helps victims of land mines. "On Jan. 16, 1999, my innocence was involuntarily taken from me by someone I trusted and respected," Soulias said. "It was taken from me in a manner that will haunt me to the day I die." O'Reilly described the January 1999 incident as an assault that stopped short of sexual intercourse. He said that until then Soulias had lived with her family and had never had a boyfriend or any sexual experience. In 1991, a jury in West Palm Beach, Fla., acquitted Smith of sexual assault and battery on a 30-year-old woman he met in a nightclub. He said his sexual relations with the woman, Patricia Bowman, had been consensual. According to the lawsuit filed Wednesday, Soulias said Smith called her the morning after the incident and left apologetic voicemails. Soulias was accompanied at Thursday's news conference by her younger sister, Melissa, who said that she had heard the voicemails. O'Reilly said the voicemails had not been preserved. The lawsuit asks for at least $50,000 in damages, the minimum that such a court action must demand under Illinois law. Smith's mother is former Ambassador to Ireland Jean Kennedy Smith. He is the nephew of Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and the late President Kennedy.


One thing I never understood was why she was crying when she was saying it was not about money.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: thegayismine on July 28, 2008, 09:57:55 AM

In any event, Cruise and his lawyers are not known to have employed roundabout tactics. Oh BTW, what did you guys think about this one:

http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/2496611/detail.html


Well, mother, Cruise's not been accused of raping anyone [...]


Can he?


If you mean "literally," "physically," I don't know -- if you mean, rape in the figurative sense, of course he can -- he's fabulously rich -- he can sure do a lot of things using his money!
Title: The Beatles', "I Am The Walrus"
Post by: per hair on August 02, 2008, 12:27:48 PM


But almost always, during the initial stage of the struggle, the oppressed, instead of striving for liberation, tend themselves to become oppressors, or "sub-oppressors." The very structure of their thought has been conditioned by the contradictions of the concrete, existential situation by which they were shaped. Their ideal is to be men; but for them, to be men is to be oppressors. This is their model of humanity. This phenomenon derives from the fact that the oppressed, at a certain moment of their existential experience, adopt an attitude of "adhesion" to the oppressor. Under these circumstances they cannot "consider" him sufficiently clearly to objectivize him -- to discover him "outside" themselves. This does not necessarily mean that the oppressed are unaware that they are downtrodden. But their perception of themselves as oppressed is impaired by their submersion in the reality of oppression. At this level, their perception of themselves as opposites of the oppressor does not yet signify engagement un a struggle to overcome the contradiction; the one pole aspires not to liberation, but to identification with its opposite pole.
 

Projective Identification is a psychological term first introduced by Melanie Klein of the Object relations school of psychoanalytic thought in 1946. It refers to a psychological process in which one person projects a thought, belief or emotion to a second person. Then, in most common definitions of projective identification, there is another action in which the second person is changed by the projection and begins to behave as though he or she is in fact actually characterized by those thoughts or beliefs that have been projected. This is a process that generally happens outside of the awareness of both parties involved, although this has been a matter of some argument. What is projected is most often an intolerable, painful, or dangerous idea or belief about the self that the first person cannot accept (i.e. "I have behaved wrongly" or "I have a sexual feeling towards ...." ) Or it may be a valued or esteemed idea that again is difficult for the first person to acknowledge. Projective identification is believed to be a very early or primitive psychological process and is understood to be one of the more primitive defense mechanisms. Yet it is also thought to be the basis out of which more mature psychological processes like empathy and intuition are formed.

Many authors have described the mechanism of projective identification. Ogden (1979, 1986) describes a process in which part of the self is projected onto an external object. The external object (the second person) experiences a blurring of the boundaries or definitions of the self and other. This takes place during an interpersonal interaction in which the projector (the first person) actively pressures the recipient to think, feel and act in accordance with the projection. The recipient of the projection then processes or "metabolizes" (mirrors or explains) the projection so that it can then be re-internalized (re-experienced and understood) by the projector (see example). Different definitions of projective identification exist and there are disagreements as to a number of its aspects, for example: where does the process begin and end, exactly what is "projected" and what is "received", is a second person required for projective identification to take place, does projective identification occur when it is within the awareness of either party involved, and what is the difference between projection and projective identification. Young (1994, ch. 7) provides a detailed history and conceptual analysis of these issues.

Ogden (1982) describes the process of projective identification as simultaneously involving a type of psychological defense against unwanted feelings or fantasies, a mode of communication, and as a type of human relationship. As a defense a psychiatric patient, for example, can use PI to deny the truth of unwanted feelings or beliefs by projecting them into the other person. Additionally, because the analyst begins to unknowingly enact these feelings or beliefs (even though they were originally uncharacteristic of him or her), the patient is in a sense "controlling" the interaction with the analyst. This is often experienced by the analyst as a subtle pressure to behave or believe in a particular way; but it is an influence to which the analyst usually is not attentive or which is not experienced consciously. By influencing the analyst's behavior, the patient prevents exploratory, original and vulnerable material from coming into the discussion.

Projective identification functions as a mode of communication as well. The sender "gives" his or her unwanted thoughts or feelings to the receiver. Instead of describing these thoughts or feelings in discussion, the unwanted content is communicated directly or recreated in the receiver by actions, facial expression, bodily attitude, words or sounds, etc. By experiencing it himself, the receiver may understand what the sender is experiencing, even if the sender is unaware of it. Projective identification often occurs not as an isolated incident, but as a series of projections and identifications and counter-projections and counter-identifications that evolve in a relationship over time. An example of this might be the mother/infant dyad or a husband and wife pairing. In such cases there is an ongoing emotional economy or transaction between the partners that takes place over the course of an entire relationship.

Here is a simple example of projective identification in a psychiatric setting: A traumatized patient describes to his analyst a horrible incident which he experienced recently. Yet in describing this incident the patient remains emotionally unaffected or even indifferent to his own obvious suffering and perhaps even the suffering of his loved ones. When asked he denies having any feelings about the event whatsoever. Yet, when the analyst hears this story, she begins to feel very strong feelings (i.e. perhaps sadness and/or anger) in response. She might tear up or become righteously indignant on behalf of the patient, thereby acting out the patient's feelings resulting from the trauma. Being a well-trained analyst however, she recognizes the profound effect that her patient's story is having on her. Acknowledging to herself the feelings she is having, she suggests to the patient that he might perhaps be having feelings that are difficult for him to experience in relation to the trauma. She processes or metabolizes these experiences in herself and puts them into words and speaks them to the patient. Ideally, then the patient can recognize in himself the emotions or thoughts that he previously could not let into his awareness. Another common example is in the mother/child dyad where the mother is able to experience and address her child’s needs when the child is often unable to state his own needs at all. The above examples describe projective identification within the context of a dyad. However, PI takes place within a group context as well. Another notable psychoanalyst Wilfred Bion (1961) described projective identification in the following way: "the analyst feels he is being manipulated so as to be playing a part, no matter how difficult to recognize, in someone else's fantasy" This ongoing link between internal intra-psychic process and the interpersonal dimension has provided the foundation for understanding important aspects of group and organizational life. Bion's studies of groups examined how collusive, shared group phenomena such as scapegoating, group-think and emotional contagion are all rooted in the collective use of projective identification. In fact, sociologists often see projective identification at work on the societal level in the relationship of minority groups and the majority class.


The Lyrics:

Quote
I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.
See how they run like pigs from a gun, see how they fly.
I'm crying.

Now, a lot of songs by The Beatles have these "subliminal" messages. Here it is another weird one from Beatles:

The Beatles', "Revolution 9"

The Lyrics:

Quote
Right! Right!

When you play the track backwards, it sounds like someone screaming, "Get me out! Get me out!"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PG0wksBzKSc
Title: Re: The Beatles', "I Am The Walrus"
Post by: m/c on August 02, 2008, 09:47:06 PM


But almost always, during the initial stage of the struggle, the oppressed, instead of striving for liberation, tend themselves to become oppressors, or "sub-oppressors." The very structure of their thought has been conditioned by the contradictions of the concrete, existential situation by which they were shaped. Their ideal is to be men; but for them, to be men is to be oppressors. This is their model of humanity. This phenomenon derives from the fact that the oppressed, at a certain moment of their existential experience, adopt an attitude of "adhesion" to the oppressor. Under these circumstances they cannot "consider" him sufficiently clearly to objectivize him -- to discover him "outside" themselves. This does not necessarily mean that the oppressed are unaware that they are downtrodden. But their perception of themselves as oppressed is impaired by their submersion in the reality of oppression. At this level, their perception of themselves as opposites of the oppressor does not yet signify engagement un a struggle to overcome the contradiction; the one pole aspires not to liberation, but to identification with its opposite pole.
 

Projective Identification is a psychological term first introduced by Melanie Klein of the Object relations school of psychoanalytic thought in 1946. It refers to a psychological process in which one person projects a thought, belief or emotion to a second person. Then, in most common definitions of projective identification, there is another action in which the second person is changed by the projection and begins to behave as though he or she is in fact actually characterized by those thoughts or beliefs that have been projected. This is a process that generally happens outside of the awareness of both parties involved, although this has been a matter of some argument. What is projected is most often an intolerable, painful, or dangerous idea or belief about the self that the first person cannot accept (i.e. "I have behaved wrongly" or "I have a sexual feeling towards ...." ) Or it may be a valued or esteemed idea that again is difficult for the first person to acknowledge. Projective identification is believed to be a very early or primitive psychological process and is understood to be one of the more primitive defense mechanisms. Yet it is also thought to be the basis out of which more mature psychological processes like empathy and intuition are formed.

Many authors have described the mechanism of projective identification. Ogden (1979, 1986) describes a process in which part of the self is projected onto an external object. The external object (the second person) experiences a blurring of the boundaries or definitions of the self and other. This takes place during an interpersonal interaction in which the projector (the first person) actively pressures the recipient to think, feel and act in accordance with the projection. The recipient of the projection then processes or "metabolizes" (mirrors or explains) the projection so that it can then be re-internalized (re-experienced and understood) by the projector (see example). Different definitions of projective identification exist and there are disagreements as to a number of its aspects, for example: where does the process begin and end, exactly what is "projected" and what is "received", is a second person required for projective identification to take place, does projective identification occur when it is within the awareness of either party involved, and what is the difference between projection and projective identification. Young (1994, ch. 7) provides a detailed history and conceptual analysis of these issues.

Ogden (1982) describes the process of projective identification as simultaneously involving a type of psychological defense against unwanted feelings or fantasies, a mode of communication, and as a type of human relationship. As a defense a psychiatric patient, for example, can use PI to deny the truth of unwanted feelings or beliefs by projecting them into the other person. Additionally, because the analyst begins to unknowingly enact these feelings or beliefs (even though they were originally uncharacteristic of him or her), the patient is in a sense "controlling" the interaction with the analyst. This is often experienced by the analyst as a subtle pressure to behave or believe in a particular way; but it is an influence to which the analyst usually is not attentive or which is not experienced consciously. By influencing the analyst's behavior, the patient prevents exploratory, original and vulnerable material from coming into the discussion.

Projective identification functions as a mode of communication as well. The sender "gives" his or her unwanted thoughts or feelings to the receiver. Instead of describing these thoughts or feelings in discussion, the unwanted content is communicated directly or recreated in the receiver by actions, facial expression, bodily attitude, words or sounds, etc. By experiencing it himself, the receiver may understand what the sender is experiencing, even if the sender is unaware of it. Projective identification often occurs not as an isolated incident, but as a series of projections and identifications and counter-projections and counter-identifications that evolve in a relationship over time. An example of this might be the mother/infant dyad or a husband and wife pairing. In such cases there is an ongoing emotional economy or transaction between the partners that takes place over the course of an entire relationship.

Here is a simple example of projective identification in a psychiatric setting: A traumatized patient describes to his analyst a horrible incident which he experienced recently. Yet in describing this incident the patient remains emotionally unaffected or even indifferent to his own obvious suffering and perhaps even the suffering of his loved ones. When asked he denies having any feelings about the event whatsoever. Yet, when the analyst hears this story, she begins to feel very strong feelings (i.e. perhaps sadness and/or anger) in response. She might tear up or become righteously indignant on behalf of the patient, thereby acting out the patient's feelings resulting from the trauma. Being a well-trained analyst however, she recognizes the profound effect that her patient's story is having on her. Acknowledging to herself the feelings she is having, she suggests to the patient that he might perhaps be having feelings that are difficult for him to experience in relation to the trauma. She processes or metabolizes these experiences in herself and puts them into words and speaks them to the patient. Ideally, then the patient can recognize in himself the emotions or thoughts that he previously could not let into his awareness. Another common example is in the mother/child dyad where the mother is able to experience and address her child’s needs when the child is often unable to state his own needs at all. The above examples describe projective identification within the context of a dyad. However, PI takes place within a group context as well. Another notable psychoanalyst Wilfred Bion (1961) described projective identification in the following way: "the analyst feels he is being manipulated so as to be playing a part, no matter how difficult to recognize, in someone else's fantasy" This ongoing link between internal intra-psychic process and the interpersonal dimension has provided the foundation for understanding important aspects of group and organizational life. Bion's studies of groups examined how collusive, shared group phenomena such as scapegoating, group-think and emotional contagion are all rooted in the collective use of projective identification. In fact, sociologists often see projective identification at work on the societal level in the relationship of minority groups and the majority class.


The Lyrics:

Quote
I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.
See how they run like pigs from a gun, see how they fly.
I'm crying.


Great illustration, per hair! An awesome contribution to this board on your part as well! Thanks!
Title: Re: The Beatles', "I Am The Walrus"
Post by: s t u f f on August 08, 2008, 01:53:40 AM

The Lyrics:

Quote
I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.



Looks like the heat is on!
Title: Re: The Beatles', "I Am The Walrus"
Post by: cameo on August 11, 2008, 09:25:55 AM

The Beatles', "Revolution 9"

The Lyrics:

Quote
Right! Right!

When you play the track backwards, it sounds like someone screaming, "Get me out! Get me out!"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PG0wksBzKSc


Structure and content

"Revolution 9" starts with a conversation between George Martin and Alistair Taylor:

Quote
Alistair Taylor: ...bottle of Claret for you if I'd realised. I'd forgotten all about it George, I'm sorry.
George Martin: Well, do next time.
Taylor: Will you forgive me?
Martin: Mmmm...yes....
Taylor: Cheeky b i t c h.

(Although this conversation is usually known to be the beginning of "Revolution 9," the time tracking from the CD indicates it as the tail end of the previous track, "Cry Baby Cry," following Paul's short solo song "Can You Take Me Back.")

After a brief piano introduction, a loop of a male repeating the words "number nine" (taken from an EMI examination tape) begins to be heard. This phrase fades in and out throughout the recording as a motif. Then there is chaos: feedback, impromptu screaming, rehearsed overdubs, and more tape loops. As some portions of "Revolution 9" are recordings of other music (from bits of Sibelius and Beethoven, to a backward snippet of a tuning orchestra, culled from the session tapes for A Day in the Life), the piece can be seen as an early example of sampling. Other audio elements include various bits of apparently nonsensical dialogue spoken by Lennon and Harrison, various found sounds, reversed sounds and recordings of American football chants. Also heard is the "all right" from the end of Revolution 1 (this piece was supposed to be the coda to Revolution 1 but was pushed back to several tracks after it). Also at 6:48 you can hear what seems to be the intro to Harrison's "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" played much faster on piano.

"Paul is Dead" significance

"Revolution 9" played an important part in the infamous "Paul is dead" controversy. Most notably, the repeated "number nine" played backwards can be heard as "Turn me on, dead man." If one listens carefully, the "babble", many believe, includes other hints left by the band about Paul's alleged death, including "My wings are broken," "Paul is Doomed!" "Paul is Dead... Since the..his suicide was..." and "Get me out!" As the "Paul is dead" rumours were quickly debunked, these "clues" are creative misinterpretations of "Revolution 9", but they remain an interesting footnote to the Beatles' history. The mob sounds throughout are believed to be the people circling around Paul McCartney's "fatal car crash". In the "Paul is dead" hoax, people claimed that Paul McCartney died on September 11th, 1966.

Charles Manson

L.A. District Attorney Vincent Bugliosi and Manson Family member Paul Watkins came up with the theory that Charles Manson believed that "Revolution 9" was a reference to Revelation 9, a book in the Bible that speaks of apocalypse and prophecy. He believed the Beatles were speaking to him through this song, and he drew many odd interpretations from the lyrics. It was also the battle of Armageddon, the coming black-white revolution portrayed in sound, Manson claimed. According to Poston: 'When Charlie was listening to it, he heard in the background noise, in and around the machine gun fire and the oinking of pigs, a man's voice saying "Rise"' (it is first heard 2 minutes and 34 seconds into the song, just after the crowd sounds that follow 'lots of stab wounds as it were' and 'informed him on the third night' and just before 'Number 9, Number 9'). This is actually Lennon saying "RIGHT!", as in "ALL RIGHT!" In his own statements, Charles Manson has repeatedly denied Bugliosi's assertions that "The White Album" influenced his philosophy. He has acknowledged that the "kids" in his camp were fond of The Beatles, but Manson himself was never a fan. He has claimed his tastes were more toward the likes of Hank Williams and other beer hall balladeers from the late '50s and early '60s.

Title: O'Reilly smeared "very shadowy" Human Rights Watch
Post by: pregap on August 11, 2008, 12:24:02 PM

You mean this woman:

(http://images.usatoday.com/news/_photos/2004/08/27/inside-soulias.jpg)
Audra Soulias appears at a press conference Thursday in a Chicago law office.

Audra Soulias, 28, filed a civil lawsuit against Smith, 43, claiming he bought her drinks while she was celebrating her birthday in January 1999 and later took her to his house, dragged her upstairs and assaulted her.

"This is not about money. I do not wish to see one more woman victimized by this individual," Soulias said at a news conference Thursday. "Enough is enough."

Smith, who was cleared of rape charges in Florida in 1991, said Soulias demanded a $3 million payoff in exchange for not going to court. He said in a statement after the lawsuit was filed Wednesday that "family and personal history have made me unusually vulnerable to these kinds of charges." In a statement following his accuser's new conference, Smith accused Soulias' lawyer of presenting "baseless claims in the most sensationalistic manner. While I did date Ms. Soulias for several months in 1999, the accusations being made are absolutely false and misleading." Soulias attorney Kevin O'Reilly acknowledged that Soulias had continued to work for Smith until June 1999 and during that time had consensual sex with him on a number of occasions. He declined to comment on whether he had asked Smith for $3 million before filing the lawsuit, saying he had given his word not to discuss any talks between the two sides. O'Reilly said Soulias, who once worked for Smith as a personal assistant, never went to the police about the alleged incident. Private investigator Paul Ciolino, who is working for Soulias, said that she told friends and others her story, but they warned her not to file a lawsuit. "I've repeatedly been warned by everyone I've sought guidance from not to do this," Soulias said. "I've been warned that I, my family and anyone affiliated with this case will be harassed, ruined and destroyed for bringing these allegations to light." She said she would not have filed the suit had Smith not telephoned her in January and left voicemails, which she believed were intimidating. She said the messages came after she told her story to an investigator who had been retained by the board of Smith's Center for International Rehabilitation, which helps victims of land mines. "On Jan. 16, 1999, my innocence was involuntarily taken from me by someone I trusted and respected," Soulias said. "It was taken from me in a manner that will haunt me to the day I die." O'Reilly described the January 1999 incident as an assault that stopped short of sexual intercourse. He said that until then Soulias had lived with her family and had never had a boyfriend or any sexual experience. In 1991, a jury in West Palm Beach, Fla., acquitted Smith of sexual assault and battery on a 30-year-old woman he met in a nightclub. He said his sexual relations with the woman, Patricia Bowman, had been consensual. According to the lawsuit filed Wednesday, Soulias said Smith called her the morning after the incident and left apologetic voicemails. Soulias was accompanied at Thursday's news conference by her younger sister, Melissa, who said that she had heard the voicemails. O'Reilly said the voicemails had not been preserved. The lawsuit asks for at least $50,000 in damages, the minimum that such a court action must demand under Illinois law. Smith's mother is former Ambassador to Ireland Jean Kennedy Smith. He is the nephew of Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and the late President Kennedy.
 

O'Reilly may be a dog when it comes to sex with co-workers but he's a quite good journalist. He investigates deep enough and comes up with interesting stuff; for instance, I was not aware of this

FOX News Channel and radio host Bill O'Reilly called the group Human Rights Watch (HRW) "very shadowy" and claimed that "they don't tell you where their money comes from" because the group "knows how they're perceived by most Americans." In fact, HRW's website freely discloses its donors. Later, O'Reilly's guest from the conservative Heritage Foundation complained that HRW has focused narrowly on "Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib" (prison in Iraq) and "Gitmo, Gitmo, Gitmo" (Guantánamo Bay, Cuba), where Americans have been accused of abuses, rather than "using their scarce resources to really shine the light on these places around the world where there truly are human rights abuses" like China, Syria, and Sudan. In fact, Human Rights Watch does extensive research and advocacy on these nations and scores of others.

From the November 17 broadcast of the nationally syndicated The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly:

Quote
O'REILLY: Human Rights Watch is a group that operates worldwide. They're very shadowy -- they don't tell you where their money comes from. But we have investigated. ... [T]hey won't tell you who gives 'em money, which is always a tip-off. If any group like this won't tell you who gives 'em money then you gotta go -- "Oh, okay."

O'Reilly then referred to what he claimed was a 1995 "investigative report on Human Rights Watch" by "a Dutch reporter," which revealed that the group's funders are all "left-wing people":

Quote
O'REILLY: In 1995 a Dutch reporter apparently did an investigative report on Human Rights Watch and found that -- whoa, George Soros -- ooohh! What a surprise! Kickin' in a lotta dough in there, along with the Ford Foundation, which is a far-left foundation -- charitable foundation here in the United States. The Rockefeller Foundation -- I don't know much about them. Norman Lear -- off the chart left. Katharine Graham, who was alive back then, Washington Post Company -- all of these are big donors. Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Bronfman -- so Carnegie Corporation, all the left-wing people kickin' in.

Later, O'Reilly claimed that "Human Rights Watch is very secretive about who gives them money ... because people like me are gonna look at their books and gonna point out who gives money." He concluded: "So that tells me that Human Rights Watch ... knows how they're perceived by most Americans."

In fact, nearly all the donors named in the Dutch "investigative report" are openly thanked for their financial support in numerous reports available on the HRW website:


Norman Lear is listed in the Human Rights Watch World Report 1993 as a member of an advisory committee, not a donor. Still, the disclosure of his name suggests that HRW is hardly trying to hide its association with Lear, a Hollywood producer known for financing liberal causes.

Katharine Graham, the publisher of The Washington Post who died in 1997, is not listed on the HRW website, nor is Edgar Bronfman, though it is not clear to whom O'Reilly is referring. Edgar M. Bronfman Sr. is former chairman of the Seagram Company and former president of the World Jewish Congress. Edgar Bronfman Jr. took over Seagram and turned it into an entertainment empire; he currently operates Warner Music Group.

Minutes later, Heritage Foundation senior policy analyst Jack Spencer called into the show as a guest and complained that HRW and Amnesty International focus excessively on alleged U.S. abuses while letting countries that perpetrate more serious abuses off the hook:

Quote
SPENCER: If you look at what they've looked at in the past couple of years, it's all been Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib -- that we shouldn't have invaded Iraq -- and Gitmo, Gitmo, Gitmo -- that's sort of been their thing.

Instead of using their scarce resources to really, shine the light on these places around the world where there truly are human rights abuses, I would argue that ... they not only do not have the United States' interests in mind, they actually detract from the interests of those who could really use the help of organizations like Human Rights Watch. ... But instead of focusing their resources on where they're really needed, they tend to divert those resources on places like the United States.

[...]

In places like Syria, in places like China -- these are the places -- in like Sudan. These are where we need to focus our resources.


Contrary to Spencer's suggestion that HRW focuses primarily on U.S. abuses, none of the lead articles HRW's website were about U.S. abuses when Media Matters for America consulted the site at 5 p.m. ET on November 19; the highlighted article at the top of the page was about Sudan. Links to articles on U.S. human rights issues were relegated to a small panel at the bottom of the page. Inside, HRW's website contains hundreds of articles, letters, and reports on China, Syria, Sudan, and nearly every country in the world.

—G.W.

http://mediamatters.org/items/200411190010
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: caribou on August 12, 2008, 12:42:19 PM

I'm not sure if you really get it...I mean, for God's sake it's pretty clear Freud was a geek who went into pure research, which were at that time mostly on an unpaid basis. Now, what this meant was that he went broke soon and ended up taking took up work at Theodor Meynert's Psychiatric Clinic. What do you think happened that made him famous? Well, during this period he began his studies into a promising new drug, cocaine, which he believed would become a common treatment for depression -- and perhaps even for other ailments, including indigestion. He himself became an enthusiastic user of cocaine, also handing it out to colleagues and relations (including his sisters) and praising its merits in various scholarly papers. Basically he went nuts. And productive in his work, including the research projects that were never successful before. The whole 'Freud fame' is in actuality nothing else but the 'cocaine fame'.


So basically

Freud - Coke = 0
Freud + Coke = 1
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: célibataire endurci on August 13, 2008, 11:00:57 AM

So basically

Freud - Coke = 0
Freud + Coke = 1


Hahaha - solving the system of these linear equations we get

Freud = Coke = ½

LOL! ;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: hitch on August 14, 2008, 12:53:29 PM
Here too, there are several posts unrelated to law school and lawyering..
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: mapit on August 16, 2008, 10:16:16 AM
Well, I read this thread very attentively and I just don't get why all the "surprise" by the whole law school experience ... I mean, law school is  not  a mere continuation of one's undergraduate (or even graduate) studies -- I think it more akin to "boot camp" where, in addition to certain substantive subjects and professional skills, one becomes "re-socialized," learns to "think like a lawyer," learns to cope with stress and many other things collateral to learning law, but not collateral to "lawyering." Like boot camp (or virginity's loss!), when you enter law school, your life turns a corner past which it can never again pass. Don't get me wrong, I do not regret the trip ... but it brings a permanent change. So, those of you who still have the chance, enjoy the virginity -- law school will bring a permanent change!

It is always fascinating for the outsider to read of the preparation of innocent young men and women to participate in routinized institutionalized violence, which is -- after all -- the essence of law school training. The system requires, first, the dehumanization of the self; then, by natural extension, the dehumanization of everyone else. This is the key to survival in a world where lives must be disposed of as cheaply and quickly as possible.


Perhaps the proper function of a legal education is to produce persons who "think like lawyers": individuals, that is, who are trained to hold various unambivalent yet rationally unjustified beliefs, necessary for the vigorous deployment of social power, that nevertheless remain highly role specific, and are therefore subject to change at a moment's -- or a client's -- notice. Such beliefs help mold otherwise ordinary people into the sorts of state actors who will not hesitate to kill, cage, and impoverish their fellow citizens on what are deemed institutionally appropriate occasions, in much the same way that successful military training renders otherwise pacific young men capable of committing acts of politically sanctioned homicide.


It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.

We don't want to admit that we do not stand alone, that we always rely on something that transcends us, some system of ideas and powers in which we are embedded and which supports us. Man can strut and boast all he wants, but he really draws his "courage to be" from a god, a string of sexual conquests, a Big Brother, a flag, the proletariat and the fetish of money, and the size of his bank balance. The irony of man's condition is that the deepest need is to be free of the anxiety of death and annihilation, but it is life itself which awakens it, and so we must shrink from being fully alive.

Evil arises from a good impulse, the desire to escape the anxiety related to death and finitude. The attempt to escape is inevitable given our capacity for imaginatively entertaining infinity and eternity. The attempt to escape, since it is impossible, involves us in all kinds of neurotic manipulations which falsify reality. It is the fear of death which underlies all evil, the harm that we do to each other, and the destructive, manipulative, suffocating and oppressing institutions we create.  

Why do the cultural solutions to the dilemma of death seem to have led to such blood-shed and viciousness as human sacrifice, torture, executions, and wars? Why didn't this impulse lead instead to harmony and peace? The destructiveness arises, Ernest Becker taught, from the need to experience prestige and power on the one hand, and the need, on the other, for expiation of guilt.  

The need for power and prestige is obvious. The role of expiation for guilt requires some explanation. This is not the ordinary guilt we feel when we betray a friend. This is a more cosmic guilt, the kind arising from what the Greeks called hubris. It is the guilt which comes from trying to stick out above humanity's station, of challenging, by implication, the glory of the gods. It is the guilt arising from trying to exist and live heroically. Such guilt is the corollary of the cultural constructions which are designed to gather to themselves eternal and infinite meaning and power. The two go together like the two sides of a coin. The expiation of this kind of guilt in history seems to have almost always involved the shedding of blood, especially that of the enemy in war.  

Expiation of guilt is one reason why the victim must die in our place. There is another and perhaps more important reason. Victims must die in order to certify that the immortality system is intact and potent, because if our national or religious immortality chariot isn't absolutely intact, then it might not carry us to glory. The heretic who questions the true faith and/or the faithful of a neighboring country with a different system must die to assure us that our way is truth, absolute truth, the real and powerful and saving truth which cradles and shelters us from the Void.


The king is surrounded by persons whose only thought is to divert the king, and to prevent his thinking of self. For he is unhappy, king though he be, if he thinks of himself.

Pascal
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: fortuneteller on August 20, 2008, 12:39:43 PM

[...]

Delusions: One the cardinal symptoms of paranoia and other disorders, most notably schizophrenia. [...]


Well, while delusions are a very important characteristic symptoms of Schizophrenia, hallucinations are just as significative for the diagnosis. For instance, you need only one Criterion A symptom if delusions are bizarre or hallucinations consist of a voice keeping up a running commentary on the person's behavior or thoughts, or 2+ voices conversing with each other.

http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/5117/Criteria.jpg
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Mina on August 20, 2008, 01:56:56 PM
That study seems to have captured how I felt throughout law school, even before 1L grades. I'm a 2L.

I came in there really happy and care-free, and loving, and when I left, it as if my soul was crushed and I was transformed into a hedonistic machine. My persona was debased, it was if I was stripped of all my color and life, and redressed ina machinistic black and white. Part of a wayward zebra herd--always in angst. 

This year, to combat this diagnosis of what I define as the essence of terribleness and, I came up with a plan!

first, I will only do the minimal amount of work, the rest I will be chilling. 

Second, I am going out every thursday, friday and saturday, and taking time to spend with my family-- this includes my grandma, uncles and everyone else.

Third, if I don't want to go class, I won't. For example, I did not go to my 1st evidence class today cuz I did not feel like it.

Fourth, I plan on starting my own criminal law office where I will carry my own sense of personal autonomy, instead of becoming corporate bug to be squished at the whim of the market. 

Fifth, "I don't care too much for money, cuz money can't buy me love." In other words,

Napoleon once said, "man's only limit is his ability to love each square inch around him."
I just like to remind myself of this. This is true. -MG


p.s. if anyone needs a criminal lawyer, Holla!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: publiek on August 21, 2008, 02:05:54 PM

Well, while delusions are a very important characteristic symptoms of Schizophrenia, hallucinations are just as significative for the diagnosis. For instance, you need only one Criterion A symptom if delusions are bizarre or hallucinations consist of a voice keeping up a running commentary on the person's behavior or thoughts, or 2+ voices conversing with each other.

http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/5117/Criteria.jpg


I see what you mean, fortune teller - Auditory hallucinations, particularly of one or more talking voices, are particularly associated with psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia, and hold special significance in diagnosing these conditions, although many people not suffering from diagnosable mental illness may sometimes hear voices as well. When someone hears voices conversing, they hear 2+ voices speaking to each other (usually about the person who is hallucinating). In voices commenting, the person hears a voice making comments about his/her behavior or thoughts, typically in the third person (such as, "isn't he silly"). Sometimes the voices consist of hearing a "running commentary" on the person's behavior as it occurs ("she is showering"). Other times, the voices may tell the person to do something (commonly referred to as "command hallucinations").
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ambulando on August 21, 2008, 06:45:03 PM

It is always fascinating for the outsider to read of the preparation of innocent young men and women to participate in routinized institutionalized violence, which is -- after all -- the essence of law school training. The system requires, first, the dehumanization of the self; then, by natural extension, the dehumanization of everyone else. This is the key to survival in a world where lives must be disposed of as cheaply and quickly as possible.

It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.

We don't want to admit that we do not stand alone, that we always rely on something that transcends us, some system of ideas and powers in which we are embedded and which supports us. Man can strut and boast all he wants, but he really draws his "courage to be" from a god, a string of sexual conquests, a Big Brother, a flag, the proletariat and the fetish of money, and the size of his bank balance. The irony of man's condition is that the deepest need is to be free of the anxiety of death and annihilation, but it is life itself which awakens it, and so we must shrink from being fully alive.

Evil arises from a good impulse, the desire to escape the anxiety related to death and finitude. The attempt to escape is inevitable given our capacity for imaginatively entertaining infinity and eternity. The attempt to escape, since it is impossible, involves us in all kinds of neurotic manipulations which falsify reality. It is the fear of death which underlies all evil, the harm that we do to each other, and the destructive, manipulative, suffocating and oppressing institutions we create. 

Why do the cultural solutions to the dilemma of death seem to have led to such blood-shed and viciousness as human sacrifice, torture, executions, and wars? Why didn't this impulse lead instead to harmony and peace? The destructiveness arises, Ernest Becker taught, from the need to experience prestige and power on the one hand, and the need, on the other, for expiation of guilt. 

The need for power and prestige is obvious. The role of expiation for guilt requires some explanation. This is not the ordinary guilt we feel when we betray a friend. This is a more cosmic guilt, the kind arising from what the Greeks called hubris. It is the guilt which comes from trying to stick out above humanity's station, of challenging, by implication, the glory of the gods. It is the guilt arising from trying to exist and live heroically. Such guilt is the corollary of the cultural constructions which are designed to gather to themselves eternal and infinite meaning and power. The two go together like the two sides of a coin. The expiation of this kind of guilt in history seems to have almost always involved the shedding of blood, especially that of the enemy in war. 

Expiation of guilt is one reason why the victim must die in our place. There is another and perhaps more important reason. Victims must die in order to certify that the immortality system is intact and potent, because if our national or religious immortality chariot isn't absolutely intact, then it might not carry us to glory. The heretic who questions the true faith and/or the faithful of a neighboring country with a different system must die to assure us that our way is truth, absolute truth, the real and powerful and saving truth which cradles and shelters us from the Void.


The king is surrounded by persons whose only thought is to divert the king, and to prevent his thinking of self. For he is unhappy, king though he be, if he thinks of himself.

Pascal


Monumental lines, indeed, these ones of Pascal, mapit!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: in lieu of on August 29, 2008, 06:37:54 PM

Well, while delusions are a very important characteristic symptoms of Schizophrenia, hallucinations are just as significative for the diagnosis. For instance, you need only one Criterion A symptom if delusions are bizarre or hallucinations consist of a voice keeping up a running commentary on the person's behavior or thoughts, or 2+ voices conversing with each other.

http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/5117/Criteria.jpg


I see what you mean, fortune teller - Auditory hallucinations, particularly of one or more talking voices, are particularly associated with psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia, and hold special significance in diagnosing these conditions, although many people not suffering from diagnosable mental illness may sometimes hear voices as well. When someone hears voices conversing, they hear 2+ voices speaking to each other (usually about the person who is hallucinating). In voices commenting, the person hears a voice making comments about his/her behavior or thoughts, typically in the third person (such as, "isn't he silly"). Sometimes the voices consist of hearing a "running commentary" on the person's behavior as it occurs ("she is showering"). Other times, the voices may tell the person to do something (commonly referred to as "command hallucinations").


I tend to believe the command hallucinations are just as bad as a commentary voice or the 2+ conversing voices not only in the practical sense but also in terms of diagnosing.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: s t a s h on September 02, 2008, 01:54:40 PM

Well, while delusions are a very important characteristic symptoms of Schizophrenia, hallucinations are just as significative for the diagnosis. For instance, you need only one Criterion A symptom if delusions are bizarre or hallucinations consist of a voice keeping up a running commentary on the person's behavior or thoughts, or 2+ voices conversing with each other.

http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/5117/Criteria.jpg


I see what you mean, fortune teller - Auditory hallucinations, particularly of one or more talking voices, are particularly associated with psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia, and hold special significance in diagnosing these conditions, although many people not suffering from diagnosable mental illness may sometimes hear voices as well. When someone hears voices conversing, they hear 2+ voices speaking to each other (usually about the person who is hallucinating). In voices commenting, the person hears a voice making comments about his/her behavior or thoughts, typically in the third person (such as, "isn't he silly"). Sometimes the voices consist of hearing a "running commentary" on the person's behavior as it occurs ("she is showering"). Other times, the voices may tell the person to do something (commonly referred to as "command hallucinations").


I tend to believe the command hallucinations are just as bad as a commentary voice or the 2+ conversing voices not only in the practical sense but also in terms of diagnosing.


As far as prognosis is concerned, yes.
Title: Re: O'Reilly smeared "very shadowy" Human Rights Watch
Post by: st a s h on September 02, 2008, 03:17:12 PM

O'Reilly may be a dog when it comes to sex with co-workers but he's a quite good journalist. He investigates deep enough and comes up with interesting stuff; for instance, I was not aware of this

FOX News Channel and radio host Bill O'Reilly called the group Human Rights Watch (HRW) "very shadowy" and claimed that "they don't tell you where their money comes from" because the group "knows how they're perceived by most Americans." In fact, HRW's website freely discloses its donors. Later, O'Reilly's guest from the conservative Heritage Foundation complained that HRW has focused narrowly on "Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib" (prison in Iraq) and "Gitmo, Gitmo, Gitmo" (Guantánamo Bay, Cuba), where Americans have been accused of abuses, rather than "using their scarce resources to really shine the light on these places around the world where there truly are human rights abuses" like China, Syria, and Sudan. In fact, Human Rights Watch does extensive research and advocacy on these nations and scores of others.

From the November 17 broadcast of the nationally syndicated The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly:

Quote
O'REILLY: Human Rights Watch is a group that operates worldwide. They're very shadowy -- they don't tell you where their money comes from. But we have investigated. ... [T]hey won't tell you who gives 'em money, which is always a tip-off. If any group like this won't tell you who gives 'em money then you gotta go -- "Oh, okay."

O'Reilly then referred to what he claimed was a 1995 "investigative report on Human Rights Watch" by "a Dutch reporter," which revealed that the group's funders are all "left-wing people":

Quote
O'REILLY: In 1995 a Dutch reporter apparently did an investigative report on Human Rights Watch and found that -- whoa, George Soros -- ooohh! What a surprise! Kickin' in a lotta dough in there, along with the Ford Foundation, which is a far-left foundation -- charitable foundation here in the United States. The Rockefeller Foundation -- I don't know much about them. Norman Lear -- off the chart left. Katharine Graham, who was alive back then, Washington Post Company -- all of these are big donors. Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Bronfman -- so Carnegie Corporation, all the left-wing people kickin' in.

Later, O'Reilly claimed that "Human Rights Watch is very secretive about who gives them money ... because people like me are gonna look at their books and gonna point out who gives money." He concluded: "So that tells me that Human Rights Watch ... knows how they're perceived by most Americans."

In fact, nearly all the donors named in the Dutch "investigative report" are openly thanked for their financial support in numerous reports available on the HRW website:

  • Soros Foundation and Soros Documentary Fund (Soros' name also appears on the member lists of two HRW advisory committees)
  • Ford Foundation
  • Rockefeller Foundation
  • Carnegie Corporation

Norman Lear is listed in the Human Rights Watch World Report 1993 as a member of an advisory committee, not a donor. Still, the disclosure of his name suggests that HRW is hardly trying to hide its association with Lear, a Hollywood producer known for financing liberal causes.

Katharine Graham, the publisher of The Washington Post who died in 1997, is not listed on the HRW website, nor is Edgar Bronfman, though it is not clear to whom O'Reilly is referring. Edgar M. Bronfman Sr. is former chairman of the Seagram Company and former president of the World Jewish Congress. Edgar Bronfman Jr. took over Seagram and turned it into an entertainment empire; he currently operates Warner Music Group.

Minutes later, Heritage Foundation senior policy analyst Jack Spencer called into the show as a guest and complained that HRW and Amnesty International focus excessively on alleged U.S. abuses while letting countries that perpetrate more serious abuses off the hook:

Quote
SPENCER: If you look at what they've looked at in the past couple of years, it's all been Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib -- that we shouldn't have invaded Iraq -- and Gitmo, Gitmo, Gitmo -- that's sort of been their thing.

Instead of using their scarce resources to really, shine the light on these places around the world where there truly are human rights abuses, I would argue that ... they not only do not have the United States' interests in mind, they actually detract from the interests of those who could really use the help of organizations like Human Rights Watch. ... But instead of focusing their resources on where they're really needed, they tend to divert those resources on places like the United States.

[...]

In places like Syria, in places like China -- these are the places -- in like Sudan. These are where we need to focus our resources.


Contrary to Spencer's suggestion that HRW focuses primarily on U.S. abuses, none of the lead articles HRW's website were about U.S. abuses when Media Matters for America consulted the site at 5 p.m. ET on November 19; the highlighted article at the top of the page was about Sudan. Links to articles on U.S. human rights issues were relegated to a small panel at the bottom of the page. Inside, HRW's website contains hundreds of articles, letters, and reports on China, Syria, Sudan, and nearly every country in the world.

—G.W.

http://mediamatters.org/items/200411190010


That's all fine and dandy, but what relation does HRW and Soros and the like bear to this thread specifically?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: OldCraig on September 02, 2008, 03:34:17 PM
I have a way to solve the Darkside of Law School, here goes:

1) don't make students take the LSAT
2) give everyone A+'s
3) don't rank students
4) give all students top-of-the-market paying internships and then jobs
5) eliminate the bar exam
6) streamline the legal profession to not include challenging ethical dilemmas

Yes... I like where this is going... NOWHERE.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: OpaOpa on September 02, 2008, 04:24:24 PM

It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.

We don't want to admit that we do not stand alone, that we always rely on something that transcends us, some system of ideas and powers in which we are embedded and which supports us. Man can strut and boast all he wants, but he really draws his "courage to be" from a god, a string of sexual conquests, a Big Brother, a flag, the proletariat and the fetish of money, and the size of his bank balance. The irony of man's condition is that the deepest need is to be free of the anxiety of death and annihilation, but it is life itself which awakens it, and so we must shrink from being fully alive.

Evil arises from a good impulse, the desire to escape the anxiety related to death and finitude. The attempt to escape is inevitable given our capacity for imaginatively entertaining infinity and eternity. The attempt to escape, since it is impossible, involves us in all kinds of neurotic manipulations which falsify reality. It is the fear of death which underlies all evil, the harm that we do to each other, and the destructive, manipulative, suffocating and oppressing institutions we create.  

Why do the cultural solutions to the dilemma of death seem to have led to such blood-shed and viciousness as human sacrifice, torture, executions, and wars? Why didn't this impulse lead instead to harmony and peace? The destructiveness arises, Ernest Becker taught, from the need to experience prestige and power on the one hand, and the need, on the other, for expiation of guilt.  

The need for power and prestige is obvious. The role of expiation for guilt requires some explanation. This is not the ordinary guilt we feel when we betray a friend. This is a more cosmic guilt, the kind arising from what the Greeks called hubris. It is the guilt which comes from trying to stick out above humanity's station, of challenging, by implication, the glory of the gods. It is the guilt arising from trying to exist and live heroically. Such guilt is the corollary of the cultural constructions which are designed to gather to themselves eternal and infinite meaning and power. The two go together like the two sides of a coin. The expiation of this kind of guilt in history seems to have almost always involved the shedding of blood, especially that of the enemy in war.  

Expiation of guilt is one reason why the victim must die in our place. There is another and perhaps more important reason. Victims must die in order to certify that the immortality system is intact and potent, because if our national or religious immortality chariot isn't absolutely intact, then it might not carry us to glory. The heretic who questions the true faith and/or the faithful of a neighboring country with a different system must die to assure us that our way is truth, absolute truth, the real and powerful and saving truth which cradles and shelters us from the Void.


The king is surrounded by persons whose only thought is to divert the king, and to prevent his thinking of self. For he is unhappy, king though he be, if he thinks of himself.

Pascal


King Midas seeks out Silenus, the constant companion of Dionysus, and asks him: "What is man's greatest happiness?" The daemon remains sullen and uncommunicative until finally, forced by the King, he breaks into a shrill laugh.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: gia on September 02, 2008, 07:12:18 PM

[...]

Fear of Freedom: Survival of the Fittest

Characteristic of the authoritarian sadomasochist, Hitler began his crusade on the heels of and surrounded by those he considered inferior. The achievement of ultimate power was their driving force. This quest for world domination was, to Hitler, justified as the ultimate realization of Darwin's theory of survival of the strong over the weak:

Quote
The love for the powerful and the hatred for the powerless which is so typical for the sado-masochistic character explains a great deal of Hitler's and his followers' political actions. While the [Weimar] Republican government thought they could "appease" the Nazis by treating them leniently, they not only failed to appease them but aroused their hatred by the very lack of power and firmness they showed. Hitler hated the Weimar Republic because [italics added] it was weak, and he admired the industrial and military leaders because they had power. He never fought against established strong power but always against groups which he thought to be essentially powerless. Hitler's — and for that matter Mussolini's — "revolution" happened under protection of existing power, and their favorite objects were those who could not defend themselves.

[...]


The Darwinian idea of "the survival of the fittest" is simply a struggle for existence -- for life rather than death. The exceptional life-forms may well be poorly adapted to survive. The history of evolving forms shows that happy accidents are eleminated, the more highly evolved types lead nowhere; it is the average and below types which invariably ascend. This simple biological progression is no progression at all -- it leads to the victory of the herd.

Charles Darwin writes in "The Descent of Man" that a tribe which consisted of many members who were always ready to give aid to each-other and to sacrifice themselves for the common good, would be victorious over most other tribes; and this would be natural selection. Nietzsche reversed this scenario. Let the tribe sacrifice itself, if necessary, to preserve the existence of one great individual. It is not the quantity but the the quality of humanity that we must seek to increase. He goes on to say, "A nation is a detour of nature to arrive at six or seven great men. Yes, and then to get around them!" A struggle, not for existence (Darwin), but rather a struggle for greatness -- and with that, a struggle for power. This highly undemocratic view of humanity as a kind of "raw material" out of which a few great individuals will emerge, leads to one's political views, which are far from ordinary...

Now, if my own will happens to coincide with the will of the group, this is just a happy accident, which raises the so-called paradox of democracy. In a democracy, I am committed to two principles: 1. the will of the majority (the State); 2. My own will. Unfortunately, there is no necessary reason why these two principles should ever coincide! Clearly, the individual will is forfeit to the demands of the government -- a kind of political darwinism. The herd triumphs once again, this time under the banner of the state. The better the State is organized, the duller humanity will be.

As little State as possible! 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: c l o g on September 02, 2008, 08:36:50 PM

The belief that violence is a reasonable and often necessary route to achieving our aims goes unquestioned in most societies. Violence is thought to be the nature of things. It's what works. It seems inevitable -- the last and, often, the first resort in conflicts. This Myth of Redemptive Violence is the real myth of the modern world. It, and not Judaism or Christianity or Islam, is the dominant religion in our society today.

Walter Wink, a professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in N.Y.C., in an article first published by Bible Society's Spring 1999 issue of The Bible in TransMission, further expalains that our very origin is violence. Killing is in our genes. Humanity is not the originator of evil, but merely finds evil already present and perpetuates it. Human beings are thus naturally incapable of peaceful coexistence. Order must continually be imposed upon us from on high: men over women, masters over slaves, priests over laity, aristocrats over peasants, rulers over people. Unquestioning obedience is the highest virtue, and order the highest religious value.

In short, the Myth of Redemptive Violence is the ideology of conquest. Ours is neither a perfect nor perfectible world, but a theater of perpetual conflict in which the prize goes to the strong. Peace through war, security through strength: these are the core convictions that arise from this ancient historical religion. The Babylonian myth is as universally present today as at any time in its long and bloody history. It is the dominant myth in contemporary America.


In the aftermath of World War I, which some optimists were calling the war to end all wars, the philosopher George Santayana demurred, "Only the dead have seen the end of war." This sort of fatalism is still widespread today, and it cuts across political affiliations. Whether they are hawks or doves, on the left or on the right, many people have come to accept war as inevitable, even "in our genes." The obvious problem with such fatalism is that it can become self-fulfilling. Our first step toward ending war must be to believe that we can do it.

We also need to come to grips with the scale of the problem. As far back as anthropologists have peered into human history and pre-history, they have found evidence of group bloodshed. In "War Before Civilization" Lawrence Keeley estimates that as many as 95% of primitive societies engaged in at least occasional warfare, and many fought constantly. Tribal combat usually involved skirmishes and ambushes rather than pitched battles. But over time the chronic fighting could produce mortality rates as high as 50%.

This violence, some scholars argue, is an inevitable consequence of innate male ambition and agression. "Males have evolved to possess strong appetites for power," the anthropologist Richard Wrangham contends in "Demonic Males," "because with extraodrinary power comes extraordinary reproductive success." As evidence for this hypothesis, Wrangham cites studies of societies such as the Yanomamo, an Amazonian tribe. Yanomamo men from different villages often engage in lethal raids and counter-raids. Like most tribal societies, the anthropologist Napoleon Chagnon, who has observed the Yanomamo for decades, found that killers on average have twice as many wives and three times as many children as non-killers.

But Chagnon, significantly, has rejected the notion that Yanomamo warriors are compelled to fight by their aggressive instincts. Truly compulsive, out-of-control killers, Chagnon explains, quickly get killed themselves rather than living long enough to have many wives and children. Successful warriors are usually quite contolled and calculating; they fight because that is how a male advances in their society. Moreover, many Yanomamo men have confessed to Chagnon that they loathe war and wish it could be abolished from their culture -- and in fact rates of violence have recently dropped dramatically as Yanomamo villages have accepted the laws and mores of the outside world.

In his classic book "On Agression," the biologist Konrad Lorenz acknowledged that it might be possible to "breed out the aggressive drive by eugenic planning." But that would be a huge mistake, Lorenz argued, because aggression is a vital part of our humanity. It plays a role in almost all human endeavors, including science, the arts, business, politics, and sports. Aggression can serve the cause of peace. There are, for example, some extremely aggressive peace activists.

Even if warfare is at least in part biologically based -- and what human behavior isn't? -- we cannot end it by altering our biology. Modern war is primarily a social and political phenomenon, and we need social and political solutions to end it. Many such solutions have been proposed, but all are problematic. One perennial plan is for all nations to yield power to a global institution that can enforce peace. This was the vision that inspired the League of Nations and the UN. But neither the US nor any other major power is likely to entrust its national security to an international entity any time soon. And even if we did, how would we ensure that a global military force does not become repressive?

One encouraging finding to emerge from political science is that democracies rarely, if ever, fight each other. But does that mean democracies such as the US should use military means to force countries with no democratic tradition to accept this form of governance? If history teaches us something, it is that war often begets more war. Religion has been prescribed as a solution to war and aggression. After all, most religions preach love and forgiveness, and they prohibit killing, at least in principle. But in practice, of course, religion has often inspired rather than inhibited bloodshed.

We will abolish war someday. The only questions are how, and how soon.


In an amazing scientific discovery, we have now come to know that antihomicidal defenses start early in life -- even before we are born, when we still inhabit the presumably cozy environment of our mother's womb. As Harvard biologist David Haig has discovered, even the womb presents its own dangers; a chief one of those is what is known as spontaneous abortions, many of which happen before a woman even knows she is pregnant. Indeed, we now know that many women who experience late periods and worry that they are pregnant, only to be relieved later when their periods begin again, have actually experienced spontaneous abortion of the growing fetus. According to Haig's findings, these often undetected miscarriages occur when the mother's body has sensed that the fetus is in poor health or possesses genetic abnormalities.

Remarkably, Haig also discovered that a defense mechanism has evolved to outwit the mother's body and protect the fetus. This is the fetal production of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), which is a hormone the fetus secretes into the mother's bloodstream. The female body appears to "interpret" high levels of hCG as a sign that a fetus is healthy and viable, and so does not spontaneously abort. Even the womb is a hostile environment where one's own interests must be protected at the cost of another's. Even in that most sacred place we are potential murder victims.
Title: Suicide, practice of medicine, drugs, sex - Outside State Jurisdiction
Post by: le mains sales on September 05, 2008, 08:17:43 PM

[...]

Delusions: One the cardinal symptoms of paranoia and other disorders, most notably schizophrenia. [...]


Well, while delusions are a very important characteristic symptoms of Schizophrenia, hallucinations are just as significative for the diagnosis. For instance, you need only one Criterion A symptom if delusions are bizarre or hallucinations consist of a voice keeping up a running commentary on the person's behavior or thoughts, or 2+ voices conversing with each other.

http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/5117/Criteria.jpg


Here it is a slightly different perspective on the issue, fortune:

"If you talk to God, you are praying; If God talks to you, you have schizophrenia. If the dead talk to you, you are a spiritualist; If you talk to the dead, you are a schizophrenic."
-Thomas Szaz.

While people behave and think in ways that are very disturbing, this does not mean they have a disease. To Szasz, people with mental illness have a "fake disease," and these "scientific categories" are in fact used for power controls. Schizophrenia is "the sacred symbol of psychiatry" and, according to Szasz, simply does not exist. To be a true disease, the entity must somehow be capable of being approached, measured, or tested in scientific fashion. According to Szasz, disease must be found on the autopsy table and meet pathological definition instead of being voted into existence by members of the American Psychiatric Association. Mental illnesses are "like a" disease, argues Szasz, putting mental illness in a semantic metaphorical language arts category. Psychiatry is a pseudo-science that parodies medicine by using medical sounding words invented over the last 100 years. To be clear, heart break and heart attack belong to two completely different categories. Psychiatrists are but "soul doctors", the successors of priests, who deal with the spiritual "problems in living" that have troubled people forever. Psychiatry, through various Mental Health Acts has become the secular state religion. It is a social control system, which disguises itself under the claims of scientificity. The notion that biological psychiatry is a real science or a genuine branch of medicine has been challenged by other critics as well, such as Michel Foucault in "Madness and Civilization."

State government by enforcing the use of shock therapy has abused Psychiatry with impunity according to Szaz. If we accept that "mental illness" is a euphemism for behaviors that are disapproved of, then the state has no right to force psychiatric "treatment" on these individuals. Similarly, the state should not be able to interfere in mental health practices between consenting adults (for example, by legally controlling the supply of psychotropic drugs or psychiatric medication). The medicalization of government produces a "therapeutic state," designating someone as "insane" or as a "drug addict". In "Ceremonial Chemistry" (1973), he argued that the same persecution which has targeted Witches, Jews, Gypsies or homosexuals now targets "drug addicts" and "insane" people. Szasz argued that all these categories of people were taken as scapegoats of the community in ritual ceremonies.

To underscore this continuation of religion through medicine, he even takes as example obesity: instead of concentrating on junk food (ill-nutrition), physicians denounced hypernutrition. According to Szasz, despite their scientific appearance, the diets imposed were a moral substitute to the former fasts, and the social injunction not to be overweight is to be considered as a moral order, not as a scientific advice as it claims to be. As with those thought bad (insane people), those who took the wrong drugs (drug-addicts), medicine created a category for those who had the wrong weight (obeses). Szasz argued that psychiatrics were created in the 17th century to study and control those who erred from the medical norms of social behavior; a new specialization, "drogophobia", was created in the 20th century to study and control those who erred from the medical norms of drug consumption; and then, in the 1960s, another specialization, "bariatrics", was created to deal with those who erred from the medical norms concerning the weight which the body should have. Thus, he underscores that in 1970, the American Society of Bariatic Physicians (from the Greek baros, weight) had 30 members, and already 450 two years later. 

Drug addiction is not a "disease" to be cured through legal drugs (Methadone instead of heroin; which forgets that heroin was created in the first place to be a substitute to opium), but a social "habit". Szasz also argues in favor of a drugs free-market. He criticized the "war on drugs", arguing that using drugs was in fact a victimless crime. Prohibition itself constituted the crime. He shows how the "war on drugs" lead states to do things that would have never been considered half a century before, such as prohibiting a person from ingesting certain substances or interfering in other countries to impede the production of certain plants (e.g. coca eradication plans, or the campaigns against opium; both are traditional plants opposed by the Western world). Although Szasz is skeptical about the merits of psychotropic medications, he favors the repeal of drug prohibition. "Because we have a free market in food, we can buy all the bacon, eggs, and ice cream we want and can afford. If we had a free market in drugs, we could similarly buy all the barbiturates, chloral hydrate, and morphine we want and could afford." Szasz argued that the prohibition and other legal restrictions on drugs are enforced not because of their lethality, but in a ritualistic aim. He also recalls that pharmakos, the Greek root of pharmacology, originally meant "scapegoat". Szasz dubbed pharmacology "pharmacomythology" because of its inclusion of social practices in its studies, in particular through the inclusion of the category of "addictiveness" in its programs. "Addictiveness" is a social category, argued Szasz, and the use of drugs should be apprehended as a social ritual rather than exclusively as the act of ingesting a chemical substance. There are many ways of ingesting a chemical substance, or "drug" (which comes from pharmakos), just as there are many different cultural ways of eating or drinking. Thus, some cultures prohibit certain types of substances, which they call "taboo", while they make use of others in various types of ceremonies.
Title: Re: The Beatles', "I Am The Walrus"
Post by: wheresmyadude on September 06, 2008, 11:20:17 AM

The Lyrics:

Quote
I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.
See how they run like pigs from a gun, see how they fly.
I'm crying.

Now, a lot of songs by The Beatles have these "subliminal" messages. Here it is another weird one from Beatles:

The Beatles', "Revolution 9"

The Lyrics:

Quote
Right! Right!

When you play the track backwards, it sounds like someone screaming, "Get me out! Get me out!"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PG0wksBzKSc


A subliminal message is communicated below the conscious level of perception. By nature, you will not be aware of receiving one. Backmasking, an audio technique in which sounds are recorded backwards onto a track that is meant to be played forwards, produces messages that sound like gibberish to the conscious mind. Gary Greenwald, a fundamentalist Christian preacher, claims that these messages can be heard subliminally, and can induce listeners towards, in the case of rock music, sex and drug use. However, this is not generally accepted as fact.

(http://img147.imageshack.us/img147/6656/soxsatanicsubliminalsrv5.png)
The manual for the popular sound program SoX pokes fun at subliminal messages. The description of the "reverse" option says "Included for finding satanic subliminals."

Following the 1950s subliminal message panic, many businesses have sprung up purporting to offer helpful subliminal audio tapes that supposedly improve the health of the listener. However, there is no evidence for the therapeutic effectiveness of such tapes.

Subliminal messages have also been known to appear in music. In the 1990s, two young men died from self-inflicted gunshots and their families were convinced it was because of a British rock band, Judas Priest. The families claimed subliminal messages told listeners to "do it" in the song "Better by You, Better Than Me". The case was taken to court and the families sought more than US$6 million in damages. The judge, Jerry Carr Whitehead, ruled that the subliminal messages did exist in the song, but stated that the families did not produce any scientific evidence that the song persuaded the young men to kill themselves. In turn, he ruled it probably would not have been perceived without the "power of suggestion" or the young men would not have done it unless they really intended to.

Subliminal messages can affect a human's emotional state and/or behaviors. They are most effective when perceived unconsciously. The most extensive study of therapeutic effects from audiotapes was conducted to see if the self-esteem audiotapes would raise self-esteem. 237 volunteers were provided with tapes of 3 manufacturers and completed post tests after one month of use. The study showed clearly that subliminal audiotapes made to boost self-esteem did not produce effects associated with subliminal content within one month's use. The effectiveness of any subliminal message has been called into question time after time and has led many to one conclusion, namely: that the technique does not work, as Anthony R. Pratkanis, one of the researchers in the field puts it: "It appears that, despite the claims in books and newspapers and on the backs of subliminal self help tapes, subliminal-influence tactics have not been demonstrated to be effective. Of course, as with anything scientific, it may be that someday, somehow, someone will develop a subliminal technique that may work, just as someday a chemist may find a way to transmute lead to gold. I am personally not purchasing lead futures on this hope however."
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: u s e h e r n a m e on September 06, 2008, 12:59:22 PM

[...]

Charles Darwin writes in "The Descent of Man" that a tribe which consisted of many members who were always ready to give aid to each-other and to sacrifice themselves for the common good, would be victorious over most other tribes; and this would be natural selection. Nietzsche reversed this scenario. Let the tribe sacrifice itself, if necessary, to preserve the existence of one great individual. It is not the quantity but the the quality of humanity that we must seek to increase. He goes on to say, "A nation is a detour of nature to arrive at six or seven great men. Yes, and then to get around them!" A struggle, not for existence (Darwin), but rather a struggle for greatness -- and with that, a struggle for power. This highly undemocratic view of humanity as a kind of "raw material" out of which a few great individuals will emerge, leads to one's political views, which are far from ordinary...

[...] 


Again, wheres, your post is more appropriately placed (situated) here


Friedrich Nietzsche used to say that if you seek something, you wish to multiply yourself tenfold, a hundredfold, that is seek followers, you have to seek zeros!

Title: Re: Suicide, practice of medicine, drugs, sex - Outside State Jurisdiction
Post by: u s ehe r n a m e on September 06, 2008, 02:42:07 PM

Well, while delusions are a very important characteristic symptoms of Schizophrenia, hallucinations are just as significative for the diagnosis. For instance, you need only one Criterion A symptom if delusions are bizarre or hallucinations consist of a voice keeping up a running commentary on the person's behavior or thoughts, or 2+ voices conversing with each other.

http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/5117/Criteria.jpg


Here it is a slightly different perspective on the issue, fortune:

"If you talk to God, you are praying; If God talks to you, you have schizophrenia. If the dead talk to you, you are a spiritualist; If you talk to the dead, you are a schizophrenic."
-Thomas Szaz.

While people behave and think in ways that are very disturbing, this does not mean they have a disease. To Szasz, people with mental illness have a "fake disease," and these "scientific categories" are in fact used for power controls. Schizophrenia is "the sacred symbol of psychiatry" and, according to Szasz, simply does not exist. To be a true disease, the entity must somehow be capable of being approached, measured, or tested in scientific fashion. According to Szasz, disease must be found on the autopsy table and meet pathological definition instead of being voted into existence by members of the American Psychiatric Association. Mental illnesses are "like a" disease, argues Szasz, putting mental illness in a semantic metaphorical language arts category. Psychiatry is a pseudo-science that parodies medicine by using medical sounding words invented over the last 100 years. To be clear, heart break and heart attack belong to two completely different categories. Psychiatrists are but "soul doctors", the successors of priests, who deal with the spiritual "problems in living" that have troubled people forever. Psychiatry, through various Mental Health Acts has become the secular state religion. It is a social control system, which disguises itself under the claims of scientificity. The notion that biological psychiatry is a real science or a genuine branch of medicine has been challenged by other critics as well, such as Michel Foucault in "Madness and Civilization."

State government by enforcing the use of shock therapy has abused Psychiatry with impunity according to Szaz. If we accept that "mental illness" is a euphemism for behaviors that are disapproved of, then the state has no right to force psychiatric "treatment" on these individuals. Similarly, the state should not be able to interfere in mental health practices between consenting adults (for example, by legally controlling the supply of psychotropic drugs or psychiatric medication). The medicalization of government produces a "therapeutic state," designating someone as "insane" or as a "drug addict". In "Ceremonial Chemistry" (1973), he argued that the same persecution which has targeted Witches, Jews, Gypsies or homosexuals now targets "drug addicts" and "insane" people. Szasz argued that all these categories of people were taken as scapegoats of the community in ritual ceremonies. 

[...]


Similarly, psychiatrists R. D. Laing, Silvano Arieti, Theodore Lidz and Colin Ross have argued that the symptoms of what is called mental illness are comprehensible reactions to impossible demands that society and particularly family life places on some sensitive individuals. Laing, Arieti, Lidz and Ross were notable in valuing the content of psychotic experience as worthy of interpretation, rather than considering it simply as a secondary and essentially meaningless marker of underlying psychological or neurological distress. Laing described 11 case studies of people diagnosed with schizophrenia and argued that the content of their actions and statements was meaningful and logical in the context of their family and life situations. In 1956, Palo Alto, Gregory Bateson and his colleagues Paul Watzlawick, Donald Jackson, and Jay Haley articulated a theory of schizophrenia, related to Laing's work, as stemming from double bind situations where a person receives different or contradictory messages. Madness was therefore an expression of this distress and should be valued as a cathartic and transformative experience. In the books "Schizophrenia" and the "Family and The Origin and Treatment of Schizophrenic Disorders" Lidz and his colleagues explain their belief that parental behavior can result in mental illness in children. Arieti's "Interpretation of Schizophrenia" won the 1975 scientific National Book Award in the United States.

The concept of schizophrenia as a result of civilization has been developed further by psychologist Julian Jaynes in his 1976 book "The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind"; he proposed that until the beginning of historic times, schizophrenia or a similar condition was the normal state of human consciousness. This would take the form of a "bicameral mind" where a normal state of low affect, suitable for routine activities, would be interrupted in moments of crisis by "mysterious voices" giving instructions, which early people characterized as interventions from the gods. Researchers into shamanism have speculated that in some cultures schizophrenia or related conditions may predispose an individual to becoming a shaman; the experience of having access to multiple realities is not uncommon in schizophrenia, and is a core experience in many shamanic traditions.

Equally, the shaman may have the skill to bring on and direct some of the altered states of consciousness psychiatrists label as illness. Psychohistorians, on the other hand, accept the psychiatric diagnoses. However, unlike the current medical model of mental disorders they argue that poor parenting in tribal societies causes the shaman's schizoid personalities. Speculation regarding primary and important religious figures as having schizophrenia abound. Commentators such as Paul Kurtz and others have endorsed the idea that major religious figures experienced psychosis, heard voices and displayed delusions of grandeur. Psychiatrist Tim Crow has argued that schizophrenia may be the evolutionary price we pay for a left brain hemisphere specialization for language. Since psychosis is associated with greater levels of right brain hemisphere activation and a reduction in the usual left brain hemisphere dominance, our language abilities may have evolved at the cost of causing schizophrenia when this system breaks down.
Title: Superego Disintegration
Post by: cosinger on September 08, 2008, 03:30:36 PM

It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, but he did not do anybody himself; Hitler, on the other hand, is known to have killed with his own hand.


[...] Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. [...]


What was the genesis of Hitler's evil? Many theories are given ranging from:

- born with one testicle
- testicle and/or part of penis bitten off by a goat
- overindulgent mother
- abused child with low self-esteem
- abusive father whose family secret was he had been sired by a Jew
- mother died in 1907 from cancer unsuccessfully treated by Jewish doctor
- syphilis
- syphilis caused by Jewish prostitute
- bad parenting
- Jewish suspect
- mental illness
- physical illness


The main factors hampering the development of the superego in wartime have been studied thoroughly by Anna Freud and Dorothy Burlingham. The children under observation in the Hampstead Nurseries were mostly of pre-school age, that is their development was beyond the appearance of the formal superego function and before the integration of the superego. During this period the child is occupied with the complicated task of mastering his destructive and aggressive wishes. Exposure to the destructiveness of war makes it extremely difficult for him to achieve this. The child does not become cruel and aggressive because of these conditions but may remain so because of them. A second factor is the often abrupt separation of the child from its mother which is inevitable when an area has to be evacuated at a moment's notice. Subsequent wandering through evacuation centers, hospitals, and nurseries, from one pair of hands into another, throws the small child in a "no-man's land.

http://www.pep-web.org/document.php?id=psc.002.0257a
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: shall on September 10, 2008, 12:12:14 PM

What was the genesis of Hitler's evil? Many theories are given ranging from:

- born with one testicle


That's called cryptorchidism and represents failure of the testis to move, or "descend," during fetal development from an abdominal position, through the inguinal canal, into the ipsilateral scrotum. About two thirds of cases without other abnormalities are unilateral; 1/3 involve both testes. In 90% of cases an undescended testis can be palpated (felt) in the inguinal canal; in a minority the testis or testes are in the abdomen or nonexistent (truly "hidden"). Undescended testes are associated with reduced fertility, increased risk of testicular germ cell tumors and psychological problems when the boy is grown. Undescended testes are also more susceptible to testicular torsion and infarction and inguinal hernias. To reduce these risks, undescended testes are usually brought into the scrotum in infancy by a surgical procedure called an orchiopexy. Although cryptorchidism nearly always refers to congenital absence or maldescent, a testis observed in the scrotum in early infancy can occasionally "reascend" (move back up) into the inguinal canal. A testis which can readily move or be moved between the scrotum and canal is referred to as retractile. During the last century, cryptorchidism was sometimes restricted to the subset of undescended testes that were not palpable above the scrotum or in the inguinal canal — those that were truly hidden in the abdomen or completely absent. In recent decades the distinction is no longer made in most contexts, and the two terms are used interchangeably. Cryptorchism is an older variant of the same term.


The psychoanalytic literature contains only scant references to the testicles and their role in the mental life of the male child. This fact alone invites a report on cases with undescended testicles in which these body parts due to their abnormal state assumed a role of specific psychological import. There is no doubt that the male child concentrates almost exclusively on one part of his genitals, namely, the penis, while the other parts (scrotum, testes) are but peripherally and transiently acknowledged. With reference to this fact Freud commented: "It is remarkable, by the way, what a small degree of interest the other part of the male genitals, the little sac with its contents, arouses in the child."

A number of significant conclusions emerge nevertheless

(1) Certain cases of pathological castration anxiety are explained by a psychosomatic phenomenon (the "testicular vicious cycle") caused by actual and perceived threats to the genitals
(2) Testicular factors may be decisive in various neurotic symptom formations beginning with the early toilet training period. The testicular contribution then takes place along certain preferred pathways of symbolic displacement
(3) Testicular symptoms are observed in many cases of physical and sexual abuse. This finding has application to the treatment of male abuse survivors and to their related sexual dysfunctions
(4) Masturbation involving the testicles is not infrequent in young boys; the most common practice consists of inserting the testes inside the body
(5) The condition of cryptorchism may contribute to psychopathology, especially in the area of masculine self-image; however, cryptorchid boys do not tend to be gender-disordered, effeminate, or prehomosexual
(6) Male body image formation after the phallic stage is a complex emotional and intellectual task involving temporary denial of the inner body and the testicles


Interesting take on the issue this psychoanalytic one!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: n o r m an on September 10, 2008, 01:10:51 PM

Paranoia occurs in two forms: (1) the "bad me" paranoid; and (2) the "poor me" paranoid. Paranoia affects up to 2.5% of the population. The "bad me" type tends to be more rageful and sadistic than the other type. Paranoia in all its forms tends to be organized around aggression, from sadomasochistic violence to lingering hostile mood. Paranoia is an insidious disease which develops slowly as a secondary personality characteristic, fuses into a more or less dysfunctional coping style, and may or may not become the dominant pattern. Psychologists suspect that the cause of paranoia is found in the mothering experience, in particular, the breast-feeding experience. Successfully breast-fed infants develop the capacity to feel supported and a tolerance for frustration. Unsuccessfully breast-fed infants (those who viewed the experience as "bad" in some way) develop a distinct inability to experience self-satisfaction, tolerance, and positive relationships. Internalization of the bad experience leads to the initiation of provocative and confirmatory interactions with others, mostly through splitting (seeing things as black-white, good-bad, weak-strong) and projection (accusing others of having the disowned aspects of your self). A full-blown "bad me" paranoid perceives threats in everything other people do, often exploding in manic, counterphobic episodes. A full-blown "poor me" type views the world as basically unfair and persecutory, countering their anticipation of discomfort with either antisocial behavior or grandiosity.

Delusions: One the cardinal symptoms of paranoia and other disorders, most notably schizophrenia. Delusions are faulty interpretation of reality that cannot be shaken despite clear evidence to the contrary. Delusions can be classified as:

* Bizarre -- belief that others can hear your thoughts, others are inserting thoughts, or your thoughts, feelings, and impulses are controlled by an external force
* Referential -- belief that certain gestures, comments, song lyrics, or passages in printed material are specifically intended for you or reference you in some way
* Grandiose -- belief that you are an extremely important person, an invaluable member of society, and possess or make some special unrecognized talent or contribution
* Persecution -- belief that others are out to get you, are plotting against you, foiling your every move, or making you feel guilty or ashamed
* Bodily -- belief in some kind of undiagnosed deteriorative medical condition such as dissolving of spinal cord, rotting or deterioration of skin, organs, or brain
* Religious -- belief that you are an important religious figure, in contact with deities, or serving some special theological purpose in the world.

Drugs and alcohol are used to repair their personalities especially when there is a problematic representation of self to others. The personality disordered are commonly addicted persons because the "cycle of addiction" perpetuates the extreme self-state needed to shore up their self-cohesion while at the same time undermining any adaptive integration of self with experience. All addicted persons experience cycles of self-state extremes. One of the extreme self-states will be the dominant organizer of experience. An alcohol-induced self-state, for example, will assist in lowering inhibitions and facilitating aggressive tendencies. A psychoactive drug-induced self-state may assist in fostering paranoid delusions. The most serious and sadistic crimes committed by such individuals will be when they are at the peak of their dominant extreme self-state. This means that they commit crime while intoxicated or shortly thereafter. Since they only "need" to drink or drug when there is a need for personality repair, it's unclear if they have a substance addition, a violence addiction, or a state of mind addiction.


Awesome summary GSSG!


Hahaha s/c - attentive to detail, as usual!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ergot on October 06, 2008, 01:19:30 PM

It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, but he did not do anybody himself; Hitler, on the other hand, is known to have killed with his own hand.


[...] Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. [...]


What was the genesis of Hitler's evil? Many theories are given ranging from:

- born with one testicle
- testicle and/or part of penis bitten off by a goat
- overindulgent mother
- abused child with low self-esteem
- abusive father whose family secret was he had been sired by a Jew
- mother died in 1907 from cancer unsuccessfully treated by Jewish doctor
- syphilis
- syphilis caused by Jewish prostitute
- bad parenting
- Jewish suspect
- mental illness
- physical illness


A talented Speaker

His voice had a unique tone, where the expressions of anxiety, faith, the spirit of resolve, the confidence of a clairvoyant, the madness and the logic harmonized themselves so perfectly, that he could use this magic charm to subdue a great country and a great people. He was able to talk to this people with an unmatched skill and talent, because he was himself the most radical expression of their own nostalgia, he shared their hopes and fears. One can talk of the mediumnic/visionary side of the nature of Hitler. He was the prophet who revealed to the masses a spirit or vision that was nothing else but theirs (their vision), even though they were not aware of it. At rest, he looks like a normal man: very common, very plain. But when he begins to speak (publicly), the metamorphosis is impressive. A mediocre man transforms itself into an important one. This splitting of the personality gives him a real power of fascination.

(http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/5777/z68wv0.jpg)

His well-known talent as a public-speaker consists in a magnetic power that attracts ever bigger crowds. His suggestive power (almost erotic) manifests itself through the property of his eyes, the virtue of his gaze. Very few men can resist the power of those eyes and the fascination they produce. Furthermore, his hoarse and thundering voice and his argumentative logic do not fail to produce results when he starts his fiery monologues. Those who approached him near the end of his life noticed that his charisma was about to disappear. The gaze that we talked about earlier troubles the minds of his listeners, annihilates their judgment, destroys any sense of opposition or criticism. Hitler is a better than average psychologist who masters the art of conquering not only the masses (the crowd), but individual minds as well. With him it is not only a natural talent. He studied patiently the means that bring fame and command respect: words, gestures (movements of the hands), stance, posture, attitude. His speeches are lively, spirited, easy to understand. He has the gift to find formulas that establish a kind of mystic communication between him and the masses. Of all the popular speakers and simplificators of his time, he was the simplest and the most natural.

An Actor

Hitler is an actor, during all his life he plays various roles. He got a vast repertoire and goes with apparent ease from one role to the next (from comedy to tragedy). The outer layer of his nature, in its plasticity, allows him to assume many personalities (take on many identities). He could be a statesman among statesmen, a commander-in-chief for army generals, a charmer (seducer) for women, a father for the nation. He knows how to give his words an air of truth. He makes a clever use of numerous but superficial bits of knowledge and is served by a prodigious memory. He can delude the best of judges. He gives to superficial notions the aspect of detailed knowledge. He can fool even experts. Very experienced statesmen who have met him in several occasions would believe him to be a real statesman, and a trustworthy one. Top-rank military advisers would estimate that he is a man with whom they could talk, and refined and cultured national-socialists saw in him the social leader of the nation. For years, he didn't stop to con the other representatives at the negotiation table by a calculated, very strict statesman demeanor. He would put on a neat look, almost elegant. He was friendly and showed self-control. He knew well the topics of discussion. He was remarkably convincing as an interlocutor; especially during private meetings, where he would show dignity and frankness. He knew how to leave a strong impression. He answered questions very rapidly and gave the impression of the utmost sincerity. One could never emphasize enough his admirable talent as an actor. He plays all kinds of roles to perfection, so much so that experienced political leaders renowned for their astuteness and clearmindedness were fooled like the rest. Further, his talents as tragedian allowed him to create an impression of historical greatness; he knew how to give to unimportant words (platitudes, really) a pretense of importance and solemnity.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ergot on October 06, 2008, 01:22:29 PM
A Tactician

Hitler is very skillful at manoeuvering and a cunning tactician. For instance, he excels at getting rid of his rivals, especially the first among them: the journalist Karl Harrer, president of the first version of the National-Socialist party. He secures for himself a dominating place in the party. He is not afraid to resort to questionable means to get ahead. After having eliminated or pushed aside the former members of the ruling committee, he becomes the movement's undisputed leader. The time-period 1925-1929 was one of lean years and meager results for Hitler and the Nazi movement, but he persisted without ever losing hope or confidence. In spite of his particular temper and his fits of hysteria, he had enough patience to wait and was smart enough to understand that the climate of material prosperity did not serve his purpose. In 1925, there is not much left of the party. The Führer goes back to work. He stops the feuds, summons the followers and rebuilds the movement on more stable foundations. He gathers around him a team of young and dynamic people, who worship him and learn to follow orders. His influence grows, there is almost no resistance to his will anymore. In case of personal conflict or clashes between party members, he has always the last word. He is certain of victory (sooner or later) and make those around him share his belief. He learns to tame his own impulsive and excessive nature. The lessons of sad experiences and unfortunate mishaps are not lost to him. Granted, his biased views did not disappear, but he learned to use them. The prejudiced views even make up the basis of a whole ideology that makes him more popular than ever. Cold reckoner, he holds a fair amount of lucidity and astuteness. He does not waver from- or let go of the main lines of his policy and his racist dogmas. No doubt that he sometimes forgets several points of his political program and many solemnly made promises. But these are more a matter of demagogy than part of his basic political project. Thereupon, he never wavers. He gets out of desperate situations. When he feels supported, his self-confidence and belief in his destiny give him a dynamism and an all the way attitude that help him reach his goal. He needs to feel that things turn out his way, and be proven right by current events. He needs further the cheer of the crowd, powerful friendships or the devotion of the faithful to excel and go beyond his own mediocrity. He then displays all the energy, violence, cunning and cruelty that are in him.

If his own interest requires it, all his declarations of indestructible friendship and undying gratitude are forgotten. He takes implacable revenge on those responsible for just about anything: a disappointment, an outrage, an insult or a defeat. Unscrupulous, he calculates coldly and moves his chess pieces systematically to eliminate all obstacles in his path. His willpower is boundless and to gain, keep or increase that power, he could do anything. Several times, he agrees to take enormous risks. He gambles and win. His many success in foreign politics would not have been possible if real statesmen would have opposed him vigorously. He knows how to find the vulnerable spot in his enemy's armour and to push his advantage right to the limit. He deludes the other side at the negotiating table with false hopes, chloroforming them so to say, before he operates on them and their countries deadly amputations. Just after his coming to power, he acts with a rare skill and swiftness. He reassures his suspecting allies by spectacular achievements, but at the same time he builds his dictatorship. All necessary decrees are taken in the six first months of power. His goal was to concentrate all power in his hand until the anticipated death of President Hindenburg. He used a genuine assault dynamics that shook the positions of his enemy blow by blow. The opposition forces being on a defensive stance had no chance to unite against him. They gave him all the opportunities to neutralize and destroy them. As a tactician, Hitler has always been afraid of the irrevocability of so-called final decisions. He never had at any moment a goal that he could state precisely or a real and clear strategy revealing what his intentions were. He had only visions and the power allowing him to grasp the possibilities offered by all kinds of situations, of which he would take advantage swiftly and forcibly. His sphere of activity would range from phantasmagories to carefully staged theatricals. In him can be found a mixture of tactician and visionary that does not care much about political programs.

He encouraged rivalries among his collaborators (divide as a mean to rule) this would allow him to play the role of mediator. He separates the Party and the State. One had its head-office in Münich, the other in Berlin. Even inside the Party, there were rival organizations competing with one another. The unity of the whole lay in the person of Adolf Hitler. But the principle of scattering the authority shows a system and a leader that are much less sure of themselves than was apparent. Genghis Khan was strong enough not to resort to such tactics. Hitler's tactical virtuosity though is demonstrated in the way he breaks the army through the S.A. and the S.A. with the help of the army. He usually deceived his adversaries by playing a double game: he made them rise against -- and fight one another and weakened both sides by these clashes. Hitler refuses to be one of those who, by lack of energy, focus or persistence, go straight to failure. Rarely does he let himself be driven into a defensive position, he rather overwhelms the other side with a flood of aggressive and passionate words that leaves them nonplused and intimidated. He is gifted with an indisputable psychological 6th sense, he knows how to win over his listeners to his cause, in flattering their prejudgements and their pride, in appealing to their instincts, in suppressing their sense of criticism. His willpower is far above average. All that can be obtained through force of the will and fanaticism, he will get. Even his vices will help him a lot for a time. He believed that, with enough willpower and cunning, he could change even stop the course of history. For a long time, his success has been stunning, making him believe in his genius and infallibility. He even encourages the worship of his person. All is put in place to bring about this genuine idolatry. He builds one of the most powerful political party in history, rigorously structured, starting from the most mediocre and humble of the post-war period. He understood that the disappearing of revolutions on their insurrectional aspect was irrevocable. The revolution must be made legally, with the winning of elections. He had an interest in technical developments and his thought was resolutely modern. People showed him respect because he had succeeded in reestablishing law and order and reducing unemployment. Let's mention finally one of his most remarkable inventions: the discovery that the use of methods of war in politics could be applied to war itself, and that, in this sphere also, an absolute will of destruction and the concentration of all available forces on one spot will always bring success.

A strong personality

Hitler is moved by the consciousness that he has a mission. He dreams of building and ruling an empire. He believes he has been chosen by destiny to unify the German people, to purify (cleanse) the race, to make it strong and give it the empire of the Earth. The illuminated mystical doctrine that drives Hitler must be very strong indeed for this former homeless beggar, not even a German citizen, to become absolute master and savior of Germany. The young man who failed at school and was considered to be incapable of perseverance has come a long way! But more than a mystic, he is above all a fanatic. The mixture of fanaticism and cunning that can be found in him make him superior to Roehm who is only violent, and Papen who is only deceitful. He knows how to wait to outwit the vigilance of his adversaries.

When he sees the opportunity, he acts swiftly, forcibly. He uses frenzy and temper tantrums as a weapon. However, this does not prevent him from thinking, pondering, estimating chances. His political instinct is very real and will inspire him and bring him success more than once in the management of the war. Hitler is possessed. He could fool his political opponents for so long precisely because he actually lived the roles he was playing, with intensity, sincerity. His cleverness is the cunning and astuteness of a fanatic, who finds at all times the spot where to attack and that nothing can hold back once he has decided to take action. Since he is a visionary and a prophet, he must be convincing and he is. The foundation of his psychological power lies in the charismatic side of his personality. If what he imagines has sometimes nothing in common with reality, he is nevertheless capable of convincing others that there lies the truth. He often succeeded during his political career to make competent, lucid men believe they were wrong.

http://home.ca.inter.net/~giskhan/HITLER.html
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Teach Me Tiger on October 07, 2008, 05:22:10 PM
Quote
[...] Since he is a visionary and a prophet, he must be convincing and he is. The foundation of his psychological power lies in the charismatic side of his personality. If what he imagines has sometimes nothing in common with reality, he is nevertheless capable of convincing others that there lies the truth. [...]

Hitler was a visionary. Such an individual may be quite successful in his early life only to end up throwing it all away once an internal rebellion arises and he begins questioning, long before middle-age, "Is that all there is?" And the higher the rung and the more monnies involved, the less meaningful it all seems to become. The treadmill of youth that once ran so smoothly, now jerks along mindlessly. Their natural drive and curiosity are replaced by apathy. Disillusionment and dissatisfaction mount, until one day the hollowness inside them erupts, into a roaring crescendo of deafening, threatening, self-doubt. Without invitation or shove, they leap off the treadmill. Stepping on every sidewalk crack along the way, they head home, where in profound soberness, they take stock of their self and their life. What they learn decides whether they'll begin living as born and meant, or countinue much as before; by dictate of circumstance.

A visionary is born with a burning need to do something significant with his life; something meaningful and people-bettering. Others can imagine what ringing in the ears is like, but only a visionary knows what an internal clock sounds and feels like. For him, time is always running; always winding down. Why they, alone, have and hear this tick-tock is unknown. Characteristically, and in one form or another, their earliest and most frequently asked questions is, "What purpose, this human?" They intrinsically feel a need to do something significant, "but what?" niggles and bothers endlessly. However long it takes, however many libraries of opinion they swallow, or trails they traipse, pursuit of purpose can have a visionary chewing up life in a virtual feeding frenzy, searching for reasons to justify their being. They go through careers, through friends and experiences, like an August prairie grassfire -- and all to the accompainiment of an internal tick-tock marking time's passage.

Visionaries focus on the whole, with two assumptions. Assumption 1: If they can envision, then doing MUST be possible. Assumption 2: Essential parts and pieces will assemble, and arrange appropriately within the larger context, when wanted and as needed. These individuals won't give up. To them, obstacles mean that alternatives have yet to be found and tried. Their 360-degree perspective glasses are the secret behind a visionary's creativity, but it's their unwavering confidence in outcomes, based on 2 firm assumptions, that proves their power and leads to uncommon success. These individuals tend to be the most boldly risk-taking of all. When visionary stops rationalizing, stops trying to fit into logic-built molds and starts trusting intuition instead, they tap into unfathomable good luck. Timing...in, trying...in, doing...in, life, is the second secret of his success. Their now is one tick-tock faster than others'. Intellect and ego become a formidable combination, when the intuitive bee settles in a visionary bonnet. Changing is to was, by replacement with next, is their name's fame and claim. Their birth responsibility is betterment, of others and world. Their tend is to do both frequently.

Charisma is their default birth setting, and it proves one thing -- the Creator's favorite form of humor is irony. A visionary has a "presence thing" that others initially sense as intimidating. It's an energy born of confidence, that pulses and vibrates, yet belies the often shy individual. This irony is no secret to them. Rather than rail at the unfairness, they overcome their presence anomaly, by moving beyond shyness and approaching others first. Otherwise, they may spend much time alone. Such an individual relates readily and easily with almost any other. However, when wanted or when advantageous, they can and will lean on their default intimidation, to control others and situations, personally and/or professionally. Visionaries both feel and think as they speak, and often think clearest when challenged or pressured. Leather breath -- putting their foot in their mouth -- is not a trait of them, though razor-barbed rebuttal is. As others speak, they intuitively follow along, conjuring pictoral images of the conversation. They can be totally unabashed about asking questions, regardless of how simple or inane their query doth seem to others. Some want to know, some like to know, some prefer not knowing; but visionary must. If cats, they would have long been extinct, due to curiosity.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: tght on October 07, 2008, 07:42:47 PM
His associates have written that Hitler had an enormous energy field - so powerful that others felt drained and overwhelmed in his presence. It was much more than a "powerful presence," it was more of a pulsation - which accounted for his being so photogenic. Now as far as his emotional side is concerned, his head may have been shrouded in clouds of genius, but his feet were firmly planted on terra firma. He was not a pie-in-the-sky theorist, though pie-in-the-face was definitely not beneath him. He had, no doubt, potential to be an unscrupulous manipulator. Physically attractive, confident in manner, glib of tongue, and smart, few could as artfully and skillfully deceive as him, with deception in mind and plan in hand. One of his most outstanding talents was an ability to assimilate - he'd become one with his adversary. He would seek thrill satisfaction through mental challenges - manipulating human nature and rearranging letters of law for man and land. He would not approach any law with respect. His approach appears to have been decided and his challenge driven by contempt, only! With his disregard for conformity and safety, he was attracted to the underbelly of life. For him, the underworld where reality was re-interpreted, re-invented, or suspended altogether, was irresistibly inviting. Negative consequences no deterrent. He was long-used to thumbing his nose at right, wrong, shouldn't, and can't. If the challenge appealed and he thought he could conquer, he tended to try - legal or not. Whether successful or not, he's usually prepared to celebrate or suffer the consequences.

He does it his own way and he goes it alone; no other has a vote or say. His life is his own business and he conducts it according to own want or will. While physically and mentally vibrant, he tends to be pain-dulled and heart dead. It seems he never bonds with anyone, not even with his primary caregivers. Early in life he seemed to have decided that emotions and others would not play or share stage with him. Whether cellularly decided or externally influenced, he is not emotionally vulnerable or available to others. He seems to have sworn an oath to "not love." Of all, he is least likely to make a commitment to others or assume responsibility for others either. His message in all interactions, from work to mating, seems to be "Just passing through. Don't count on me." He doesn't allow others to love him. He will maintain his emotional distance and detachment from others till death do them part. Eventually, as physical prowess declines, desires for love and intimacy increase and needs for security rise. Until he volunteers for such commitments, he will not make a reliable marriage partner. Words like monogamy, responsibility, and reliability are not common in his vocabulary. He generally will prefer loneliness to regular family life and salaried living.

He knows that sooner and better than most that he's different. Despite earnest contortions and eager hoop-jumping to please, despite parental pushing, prodding, and cheer, he still couldn't fit without causing blister or pain. There's something within him, an intrinsic fortitude that can't play as willow to wind. He just cannot and will not bend to accommodate. Rather than burrowing inside and hiding under heaps of self-doubt and self-hate, he says, "@ # ! * this!" thrusts out his chin, and takes control of his own ship's wheel. The emotional barrier that he builds between the life he tends to lead externally and the one he pursues internally, is the issue of freedom. The battle of non-conformity that began in childhood tends to be waged throughout adulthood, often escalating to full-scale war, when it comes to matters of heart. Emotional commitment is the casualty of this war; loneliness, its spoils. Non-conformity by non-committal is due to their greatest fear: being tied-down. Freedom can be negatively interpreted as self-indulgence or extreme independence. Self-indulgence does whatever it wants, whenever it wants, without permission or approval. Extreme independence says, "I don't need you or the horse you rode in on, so leave me alone." In either case, fear of dependency ... needing others ... is his Achilles' heel. What this creative and bright individual tends to forget is that human bondage is a state of mind. When he wants most, when he loves most, is when he dares least and exists stage right: personally and professionally. Trust may be the issue but vulnerability is the thorn bird he most fears.

He has an uncanny ability to mentally rotate ideas. He can maintain the whole of his 3-dimensional vision and spin it, as others would a statue on a pedestal. By shifting their focus at want and will, he alters an object's shape internally. Like a sculptor, adding clay to this tangent, subtracting from that; magnifying this area, manipulating that part, and maneuvering the whole, they mentally design before putting to pen and paper. He is purely logical being, who approaches problem-solving methodically and with step-by step thoroughness. Ever-lurking in the back of his mind is the question of whether or not the idea is workable, meaning, producible. An idea that cannot be physically realized is a waste of time, for him.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: .org on October 08, 2008, 01:54:42 PM

[...]

He encouraged rivalries among his collaborators (divide as a mean to rule) this would allow him to play the role of mediator. He separates the Party and the State. One had its head-office in Münich, the other in Berlin. Even inside the Party, there were rival organizations competing with one another. The unity of the whole lay in the person of Adolf Hitler. But the principle of scattering the authority shows a system and a leader that are much less sure of themselves than was apparent. Genghis Khan was strong enough not to resort to such tactics. Hitler's tactical virtuosity though is demonstrated in the way he breaks the army through the S.A. and the S.A. with the help of the army. [...] 


I would also contrast SA with the SS. The SS was extremely cruel - it led the mass murder in the Third Reich. Its forerunner was the "Stosstrupp Hitler" which was founded in 1923. The task was to protect Adolf Hitler. From this unit the SS (Schutzstaffel) was formed in 1925 in the same time the SA existed. The SS would wear black uniforms and the SA brown uniforms. The SA leader was Ernst Roehm and he had his own plans.

The SS was disciplined and did everything what Adolf Hitler wanted; the SA was undisciplined and there were disputes between SA leaders and Hitler. Because of the discipline the SS was an elite unit, while the SA was often called a "beater" troop. Communists, for instance, were brutally beaten by the SA -- you see, SA were like those dogs that wandered all day (and night) long in the streets. Not the SS -- they were brutal, of course, but very systematic. While they would go out to do "field work," they did so on "special occassions" and when it was absolutely necessary. The boss of the SS was Heinrich Himmler. Now you all have heard about Himmler -- systematic, rigid, controlled, and blocked of affect. His character structure was of the obsessive-compulsive schizoid type, meaning, withdrawn emotionally from the external world and existing in a repressed internal psychic world. This guy liked very much indeed to write, damn it! -- he would use his diary to guard against feelings rather than to express them. The period 1919-22 was marked by acute identity diffusion. His sexual, social, vocational, and religious identities were in flux. The diary shows gender role confusion, a desire to emigrate from Germany, vacillation between animal husbandry and a bourgeois vocation, and strong conflict on the issue of dueling, which contravened his Roman Catholic faith. Oh, and BTW, the guy was fascinated by astrology and was a strong believer in the occult! Phew!

Anyway, I am not going to make it look like Himmler and the SS were some kind of ridiculous group, for they clearly were not. By the way, SS-Obergruppenfuehrer Theodor Eicke was resposible for the concentration camps and for the Totenkopfverbaende of the SS (skull troops of the SS). SS-Totenkopfverbände (Death's Head unit) as an elite within the elite structure of the SS. This concept grew from the fact that the most dangerous political enemies of the state were incarcerated in the concentration camps and Hitler had given sole responsibility for guarding and running the camps to the SS-Totenkopfverbände.
Title: Working sucks
Post by: co-cain on October 10, 2008, 12:03:20 PM

Herbert Marcuse analyzed the integration of the industrial working class into capitalist society and new forms of capitalist stabilization and questioned the Marxian postulates of the revolutionary proletariat and inevitability of capitalist crisis. He was concerned about the decline of revolutionary potential in the West. The "advanced industrial society" has created false needs, which integrated individuals into the existing system of production and consumption via mass media, advertising, industrial management, and contemporary modes of thought. This results in a "one-dimensional" universe of thought and behavior in which aptitude and ability for critical thought and oppositional behavior wither away. Against this prevailing climate, Marcuse promotes the "great refusal" as the only adequate opposition to all-encompassing methods of control.

In contrast to orthodox Marxism, Marcuse championed non-integrated forces of minorities, outsiders, and radical intelligentsia, attempting to nourish oppositional thought and behavior through promoting radical thinking and opposition.



Day after day we get up early and trudge to work. We swallow our pride and put up with being ordered around by the boss. We sweat and toil at jobs we hate, wasting away our lives. Why do we do it? Because we have to? Because we need the money? Or because we don't know how to live any other way? As Americans, we work way too hard. Most of us work 40 or more hours a week from when we are 18 years old until after we turn 60. One in four American workers works more than 49 hours a week. 1:8 works more than 60 hours a week and one in ten holds down more than one job. And we keep working more and more. Americans have added 20 extra work days to our work year since 1970. American factory workers work an average of five weeks a year in overtime alone. Americans work 2 months more per year than the French and Germans. We must be crazy.

Working this hard is weird and unnatural. For hundreds and thousands of years before the dawn of history, people lived as hunter-gatherers and simple farmers. Hunting and gathering is a pretty relaxed way to make a living. Modern hunter-gatherers like Native Australians "work" less than 4 hours a day. Even after we gave up the forests and built cities, we still didn't work very hard. During medieval times in Europe, people worked as few as 120 days a year. There is no reason for us to be working so hard. As advances in technology help us work more productively, we should be able to work less. Today, American workers are ten times more productive than we were 100 years ago. That means, for every hour we work today, we produce as many goods and services as workers produced in 10 hours in 1890. That also means we should be able to work 1/10th as much, and live just as well, as people did back then. That would be less than 8 hours of work a week.

Since we don't work 8 hours a week, where did all that extra productivity go? A lot of it went as profits into the pockets of the rich. The rich in America are richer than any other group of people EVER in the history of the world. If we work harder or better, our bosses aren't under any obligation to pay us more or let us work less. Sadly, that's how capitalism works. The rest of that productivity went into "improving" our standard of living. We made a decision to buy more rather than work less. Some of the things we bought really did improve the way we live. Very few homes in 1890 had running water, electricity or flush toilets. But most of what we bought were fluff consumer products like big cars and color TVs that are fun to own, but that we don't really need. The question is: why did we make this choice? Why did we choose to buy more crap instead of working less?

We didn't. American corporations made the choice for us by brain- washing us with advertising. Advertisements are everywhere, telling us we will be happier, better looking, admired, respected and even loved, if we just buy this or that product. Of course, we all know that we can't buy happiness or love, but with advertising poking into every part of our lives, it's hard not to give in to the idea that we can buy a better life. Eventually almost everyone does give in to the dull, exhausting trap of work and spend, work and spend, produce and consume. The price for this choice is high. Work saps our spirit and crushes our sense of freedom. Kissing our boss's ass all day is humiliating. The worst is when we actually get used to being pushed around. Human beings need to be free to develop our independent selves. The more we work, the less we think like free people and the more we think like dogs: dull and obedient.

Work takes time from other, better things like being with our families and friends, traveling, making love, drinking beer, painting, writing, reading, playing music, cooking and eating good food, etc. These are the things that make life rich and interesting. Work makes life boring, short and gray. Work is also killing us. 25,000 American workers are killed each year on the job. Two million more are disabled and 25 million are injured. These numbers don't include the 50 thousand Americans who are killed each year in car crashes, many of whom are traveling to or from work. Finally, we can't afford to keep consuming things the way we do. Americans make up only 5% of the world's population, but we consume more than 25% of the world's resources and energy. Soon those resources will run out. Our over-producing industries are filling the sky and water with smoke and sludge. Most of the smog in the air comes from people commuting to work in cars. Our consumption habit is ruining the earth.

To keep up the flow of resources into our country, we force the rest of the world (and many poor Americans) to do our dirty work. Poor people in places like Mexico and South Africa sweat all day in factories and mines so that we can have cheap fabric and coal to make our clothes and heat our homes. The median income world-wide is only $2,000 per person a year. The average American makes 65 times the salary of the poorest half of the world. If we could learn to work and consume less, these poor people could spend less time working for us, and more time working to feed and house themselves. If we want to be free, if we want to really live our lives, if we want to live on a healthy planet, if we want to end suffering and exploitation in the world, we will have to learn to work less.

But if I work less, won't I starve?

Most Americans have a terrible fear that if they stop working all the time, they won't be able to afford food and rent. The trick is learning how to work less by learning how to spend a lot less. Living cheap doesn't mean suffering and starving. You can live cheap and also enjoy a comfortable, plentiful life.

But I like my job.

There are some lucky people who have better jobs or who work at jobs where they do something they like. If you are one of these people, you have to ask yourself; Do you really like your job, or do you just hate your job less than most people? If you had a choice, would you choose to work at your job for 40 hours a week? Even sex would get boring after going at it for 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year. Work can spoil anything. Many people love gardening, but farm-work is hot and back-breaking. Cooking can be fun, but working as a cook in a busy restaurant is hell. If you like your job now, you will like your job even more if you work less.

If I don't work, what will I do?

Working less doesn't mean being unproductive. Take gardening again: Gardening doesn't pay. To make gardening pay, you would have to work like a farmer. But you can easily grow lots of vegetables, possibly enough to live on, simply by goofing around in your garden. Why work?

Life is an adventure if you have the time. There are so many things to do in the world, one person couldn't possibly do them all. It's sad: we get so caught up in our jobs, that when we get home, we can't think of anything better to do with ourselves than watch TV. Don't be a zombie slave - quit your job!

Quote
"No matter how much I hated it, I had to face up to the fact that I would have to earn some money. I was like many fullbloods. I didn’t want to work in an office or a factory. I thought myself too good for that, not because I was stuck up, but because any human being is too good for that kind of no-life, even white people. I trained myself to need and want as little as could be so that I wouldn’t have to work except when I felt like it. That way, I got along with plenty of time to think, to ask, to learn, to listen, to count coup with the girls."
- John Lame Deer

Quote
"I do not like work, even when another person does it."
-Mark Twain

Quote
"Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do."
-Oscar Wilde
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Modus Barbara on October 11, 2008, 12:08:11 PM
Wow, co-cain, I've been feeling exactly like this all my life (except for the last 2½ months) and I was thinking there's something wrong with me - thanks from the bottom of my heart for posting the stuff here, knowing there are other people out there who think like I do helps a lot! (not sarcastic)
Title: Re: O'Reilly smeared "very shadowy" Human Rights Watch
Post by: American Ale on October 14, 2008, 05:42:33 PM

[...] For years, George Soros and his NGOs, for instance, have gone about their work extending the boundaries of the "free world" so skilfully that hardly anyone noticed. Now a Texan redneck and a gang of overzealous neo-cons have blown it. As a cultivated and educated man Soros knows too well that empires perish when they overstep the mark and provoke the formation of counter-alliances. [...]


Strange, Soros's education was not in law either ... yet he appears to know a little bit about these issues..

George Soros is the son of the Esperanto writer Teodoro Schwartz. Teodoro (also known as Tivadar) was a Hungarian Jew, who was a prisoner of war during and after World War I and eventually escaped from Russia to rejoin his family in Budapest. The family changed its name in 1936 from Schwartz to Soros, in response to growing anti-semitism with the rise of Fascism.

Tivadar liked the new name because it is a palindrome and because it has a meaning. Though the specific meaning is left unstated in Kaufmann's biography, in Hungarian "soros" means "next in line, or designated successor", and in Esperanto it means "will soar". His son George was taught to speak Esperanto from birth and thus is one of the rare native Esperanto speakers. George Soros later said that he "grew up in a Jewish home," and that his parents were "cautious with their religious roots." However, Soros's father was proud of his Jewish roots (which can be seen in his memoir on his experiences during the holocaust, "Masquerade").

Soros was 13 years old when Nazi Germany took military control over its wavering ally Hungary (March 19, 1944), and started exterminating Hungarian Jews in the Holocaust. Soros worked briefly for the Jewish Council, which had been established by the Nazis, to deliver messages to Jewish lawyers being called for deportation. Soros claims he was not aware of the consequence of the messages. To avoid his son being apprehended by the Nazis, his father had Soros spend the summer of 1944 living with a non-Jewish Ministry of Agriculture employee, posing as his godson. In the following year, Soros survived the battle of Budapest, as Soviet and Nazi forces fought house-to-house through the city. Soros first traded currencies during the Hungarian hyperinflation of 1945-1946.

In 1946, Soros escaped the Soviet occupation by participating in an Esperanto youth congress in the West. He (Soros) emigrated to England in 1947 and graduated from the London School of Economics in 1952. While a student of the philosopher Karl Popper, Soros funded himself by taking jobs as a railway porter and a waiter at Quaglino's restaurant where he was told that with hard work he might one day become head waiter. He also worked in a mannequin factory, but was fired for being too slow at putting on the heads. He eventually secured an entry-level position with London merchant bank Singer & Friedlander. In 1956 he moved to the United States, where he worked as an arbitrage trader with F. M. Mayer from 1956 to 1959 and as an analyst with Wertheim and Company from 1959 to 1963. Throughout this time, Soros developed a philosophy of "reflexivity" based on the ideas of Popper. Reflexivity, as used by Soros, is the belief that the action of beholding the valuation of any market by its participants affects said valuation of the market in a procyclical 'virtuous or vicious' circle.


Oh please, nmla, when it comes to Soros you hear a hell of a lot of rumors ... and at least some of them are completely ridiculous!

Business tycoon Boris Berezovsky has said, for instance "I nearly fainted when I heard a couple of years ago that George Soros was a CIA agent." After spending $250 million for the "transformation of education of humanities and economics at the high school and university levels," Soros created the International Science Foundation for another $100 million. The Russian Federal Counterintelligence Service (FSK) accused Soros foundations in Russia of "espionage." They noted that Soros was not operating alone; he was part of a full court press that included financing from the Ford and Heritage Foundations; Harvard, Duke, and Columbia universities, and assistance from the Pentagon and U.S. intelligence services. The FSK criticized Soros' payouts to 50,000 Russian scientists, saying that Soros advanced his own interests by gaining control of thousands of Russian scientific discoveries and new technologies to collect state and commercial secrets.

In 1995, Russians were infuriated by the insinuation of State Department operative Fred Cuny into the conflict in Chechnya. Cuny's cover was disaster relief, but his history of involvement in international conflict zones of interest to the U.S., plus FBI and CIA search parties, made clear his government connections. At the time of his disappearance, Cuny was working under contract to a Soros foundation. It is not widely known in the U.S. that the violence in Chechnya, a province in the heart of Russia, is generally perceived as the result of a political destabilization campaign on which Washington looks favorably, and may actually be directing. This assessment of the situation is clear enough to writer Tom Clancy that he felt free to include it as an assertion of fact in his best-seller, "The Sum of All Fears."

The Russians accused Cuny of being a CIA operative, and part of an intelligence operation to support the Chechen uprising. Soros' Open Society Institute is still active in Chechnya, as are other Soros-sponsored organizations. Russia was the site of at least 1 joint endeavor to enhance Soros' balance sheet, arranged with diplomatic assistance from the Clinton administration. In 1999, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright blocked a $500 million loan guarantee by the U.S. Export-Import Bank to the Russian company, Tyumen Oil, on the grounds that it was contrary to U.S. national interests. Tyumen wanted to buy American-made oil equipment and services from male private part Cheney's Halliburton Company and ABB Lummus Global of Bloomfield, New Jersey. George Soros was an investor in a company that  Tyumen had been trying to acquire. Both Soros and BP Amoco lobbied to prevent this transaction, and Albright obliged.
Title: Re: O'Reilly smeared "very shadowy" Human Rights Watch
Post by: What Are You Waiting For on October 14, 2008, 07:42:21 PM

Oh please, nmla, when it comes to Soros you hear a hell of a lot of rumors ... and at least some of them are completely ridiculous!

Business tycoon Boris Berezovsky has said, for instance "I nearly fainted when I heard a couple of years ago that George Soros was a CIA agent." After spending $250 million for the "transformation of education of humanities and economics at the high school and university levels," Soros created the International Science Foundation for another $100 million. The Russian Federal Counterintelligence Service (FSK) accused Soros foundations in Russia of "espionage." They noted that Soros was not operating alone; he was part of a full court press that included financing from the Ford and Heritage Foundations; Harvard, Duke, and Columbia universities, and assistance from the Pentagon and U.S. intelligence services. The FSK criticized Soros' payouts to 50,000 Russian scientists, saying that Soros advanced his own interests by gaining control of thousands of Russian scientific discoveries and new technologies to collect state and commercial secrets.

In 1995, Russians were infuriated by the insinuation of State Department operative Fred Cuny into the conflict in Chechnya. Cuny's cover was disaster relief, but his history of involvement in international conflict zones of interest to the U.S., plus FBI and CIA search parties, made clear his government connections. At the time of his disappearance, Cuny was working under contract to a Soros foundation. [...]


The humanitarian Aid Worker cover is all too often indeed. I read some time ago about this HAW who's recruitment and training had been completely covert; he had revealed to no one that he was in the CIA. NOCs are sometimes placed within corporations and organizations without making the latter aware of the involvement of the NOC with the intelligence agencies. Non-official cover is contrasted with official cover, where an agent assumes a position at a seemingly benign department of their government, such as the diplomatic service. I would agree, though, that the thought that Soros himself is a CIA agent under deep, deep cover is ridiculous. His employees? Possibly. On occasion, a foreigner is targeted for recruitment; however, it is obvious that this potential agent would never knowingly work for the CIA or cooperate willingly with the US government. This individual, for example, might be vehemently anti-American. For that reason, the CIA might decide on a "false flag" recruitment approach, whereby the agent never knows that he or she is actually being recruited by the United States and the CIA. The CIA officer making the recruitment pitch poses as a representative of the false flag country or organization. It might be the case, for example, that an African official would never work for the Americans but might work for the French. An CIA officer uses a variation on false flag operations when he or she poses as a representative of an international organization, a think-tank, or a commercial firm. The agent might be induced to provide information on that basis, but would never knowingly provide information to the CIA.
Title: Re: O'Reilly smeared "very shadowy" Human Rights Watch
Post by: currency on October 15, 2008, 01:20:30 PM

[...] On occasion, a foreigner is targeted for recruitment; however, it is obvious that this potential agent would never knowingly work for the CIA or cooperate willingly with the US government. This individual, for example, might be vehemently anti-American. For that reason, the CIA might decide on a "false flag" recruitment approach, whereby the agent never knows that he or she is actually being recruited by the United States and the CIA. The CIA officer making the recruitment pitch poses as a representative of the false flag country or organization. It might be the case, for example, that an African official would never work for the Americans but might work for the French. An CIA officer uses a variation on false flag operations when he or she poses as a representative of an international organization, a think-tank, or a commercial firm. The agent might be induced to provide information on that basis, but would never knowingly provide information to the CIA.


Oftentimes these types of agents voluntarily may want to provide information (to the false flag organization). In such cases they are considered perfect volunteers and the CIA's job with volunteers is to set the table so they can accomplish whatever goals they have on their minds. As long as those goals are consistent with theirs, they are on solid ground.  The problem with these types of operations that you mention, however, is that they are unlikely to turn into stable operations. They'd be conducted in hostile environments with young and probably immature agents who will find themselves under increasingly heavy pressure. For that reason, the operation might blow and the organization being claimed to be the recipient of the information would be mentioned as the ostensible recipient of it.
Title: Re: The Beatles', "I Am The Walrus"
Post by: Labor Omnia Vincit on October 15, 2008, 06:28:01 PM

A subliminal message is communicated below the conscious level of perception. By nature, you will not be aware of receiving one. Backmasking, an audio technique in which sounds are recorded backwards onto a track that is meant to be played forwards, produces messages that sound like gibberish to the conscious mind. Gary Greenwald, a fundamentalist Christian preacher, claims that these messages can be heard subliminally, and can induce listeners towards, in the case of rock music, sex and drug use. However, this is not generally accepted as fact.

(http://img147.imageshack.us/img147/6656/soxsatanicsubliminalsrv5.png)
The manual for the popular sound program SoX pokes fun at subliminal messages. The description of the "reverse" option says "Included for finding satanic subliminals."

Following the 1950s subliminal message panic, many businesses have sprung up purporting to offer helpful subliminal audio tapes that supposedly improve the health of the listener. However, there is no evidence for the therapeutic effectiveness of such tapes. Subliminal messages have also been known to appear in music. In the 1990s, two young men died from self-inflicted gunshots and their families were convinced it was because of a British rock band, Judas Priest. The families claimed subliminal messages told listeners to "do it" in the song "Better by You, Better Than Me". The case was taken to court and the families sought more than US$6 million in damages. The judge, Jerry Carr Whitehead, ruled that the subliminal messages did exist in the song, but stated that the families did not produce any scientific evidence that the song persuaded the young men to kill themselves. In turn, he ruled it probably would not have been perceived without the "power of suggestion" or the young men would not have done it unless they really intended to.

Subliminal messages can affect a human's emotional state and/or behaviors. They are most effective when perceived unconsciously. The most extensive study of therapeutic effects from audiotapes was conducted to see if the self-esteem audiotapes would raise self-esteem. 237 volunteers were provided with tapes of 3 manufacturers and completed post tests after one month of use. The study showed clearly that subliminal audiotapes made to boost self-esteem did not produce effects associated with subliminal content within one month's use. The effectiveness of any subliminal message has been called into question time after time and has led many to one conclusion, namely: that the technique does not work, as Anthony R. Pratkanis, one of the researchers in the field puts it: "It appears that, despite the claims in books and newspapers and on the backs of subliminal self help tapes, subliminal-influence tactics have not been demonstrated to be effective. Of course, as with anything scientific, it may be that someday, somehow, someone will develop a subliminal technique that may work, just as someday a chemist may find a way to transmute lead to gold. I am personally not purchasing lead futures on this hope however."


Try telling that to the underground scientific community!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: paymen on October 16, 2008, 08:48:55 PM

Herbert Marcuse analyzed the integration of the industrial working class into capitalist society and new forms of capitalist stabilization and questioned the Marxian postulates of the revolutionary proletariat and inevitability of capitalist crisis. He was concerned about the decline of revolutionary potential in the West. The "advanced industrial society" has created false needs, which integrated individuals into the existing system of production and consumption via mass media, advertising, industrial management, and contemporary modes of thought. This results in a "one-dimensional" universe of thought and behavior in which aptitude and ability for critical thought and oppositional behavior wither away. Against this prevailing climate, Marcuse promotes the "great refusal" as the only adequate opposition to all-encompassing methods of control.

In contrast to orthodox Marxism, Marcuse championed non-integrated forces of minorities, outsiders, and radical intelligentsia, attempting to nourish oppositional thought and behavior through promoting radical thinking and opposition.


Global capitalism is in crisis and morphing into something new. Megabrands are losing market share as people question the values they stand for and the power they have over our lives. Now a new kind of cool is bubbling up. It's about a greener, more local, more politically charged way of living, and it starts with dumping megabrands and flowing your money into the small, indy stores and websites that are now popping up everywhere. Let us unswoosh the swoosh and create a vibrant new kind of capitalism that actually works.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ycer on October 17, 2008, 03:28:10 PM

[...]

Charles Darwin writes in "The Descent of Man" that a tribe which consisted of many members who were always ready to give aid to each-other and to sacrifice themselves for the common good, would be victorious over most other tribes; and this would be natural selection. Nietzsche reversed this scenario. Let the tribe sacrifice itself, if necessary, to preserve the existence of one great individual. It is not the quantity but the the quality of humanity that we must seek to increase. He goes on to say, "A nation is a detour of nature to arrive at six or seven great men. Yes, and then to get around them!" A struggle, not for existence (Darwin), but rather a struggle for greatness -- and with that, a struggle for power. This highly undemocratic view of humanity as a kind of "raw material" out of which a few great individuals will emerge, leads to one's political views, which are far from ordinary...

[...] 


Again, wheres, your post is more appropriately placed (situated) here


Friedrich Nietzsche used to say that if you seek something, you wish to multiply yourself tenfold, a hundredfold, that is seek followers, you have to seek zeros!


Nice contribution to the thread, usehername! Keeping the posts relevant to the subject really matters! :)
Title: Re: O'Reilly smeared "very shadowy" Human Rights Watch
Post by: search engine on October 17, 2008, 04:12:03 PM

[...] On occasion, a foreigner is targeted for recruitment; however, it is obvious that this potential agent would never knowingly work for the CIA or cooperate willingly with the US government. This individual, for example, might be vehemently anti-American. For that reason, the CIA might decide on a "false flag" recruitment approach, whereby the agent never knows that he or she is actually being recruited by the United States and the CIA. The CIA officer making the recruitment pitch poses as a representative of the false flag country or organization. It might be the case, for example, that an African official would never work for the Americans but might work for the French. An CIA officer uses a variation on false flag operations when he or she poses as a representative of an international organization, a think-tank, or a commercial firm. The agent might be induced to provide information on that basis, but would never knowingly provide information to the CIA.


I am sure there's an ethical issue here. I don't doubt that there are many of you out there who might think there's not; I was discussing the other day this other scenario with a few people and, to my astonishment, most of them thought there's nothing wrong with it: Here it is:

X serves as a diplomatic officer of the Dominican Republic in Spain. He's being transfered to the US, in New York City to serve as an officer for his country. The CIA and FBI conduct surveillance of his activities while he's in NYC and find out he frequents gay bars and has promiscuous homosexual sex with many men. They take pictures of him to serve as evidence of his homosexuality. He is approached to become an agent for the CIA, otherwise his country authorities would be provided with the above-mentioned proof of his homosexuality. In his country being overtly homosexual is a bar to employment in the diplomatic service. Is it ethical for the CIA to do such a thing? Well, all of the people I was having the discussion said "yes," except for two of us. 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: specialization on October 17, 2008, 08:28:38 PM

Herbert Marcuse analyzed the integration of the industrial working class into capitalist society and new forms of capitalist stabilization and questioned the Marxian postulates of the revolutionary proletariat and inevitability of capitalist crisis. He was concerned about the decline of revolutionary potential in the West. The "advanced industrial society" has created false needs, which integrated individuals into the existing system of production and consumption via mass media, advertising, industrial management, and contemporary modes of thought. This results in a "one-dimensional" universe of thought and behavior in which aptitude and ability for critical thought and oppositional behavior wither away. Against this prevailing climate, Marcuse promotes the "great refusal" as the only adequate opposition to all-encompassing methods of control.

In contrast to orthodox Marxism, Marcuse championed non-integrated forces of minorities, outsiders, and radical intelligentsia, attempting to nourish oppositional thought and behavior through promoting radical thinking and opposition.


Global capitalism is in crisis and morphing into something new. Megabrands are losing market share as people question the values they stand for and the power they have over our lives. Now a new kind of cool is bubbling up. It's about a greener, more local, more politically charged way of living, and it starts with dumping megabrands and flowing your money into the small, indy stores and websites that are now popping up everywhere. Let us unswoosh the swoosh and create a vibrant new kind of capitalism that actually works.


Here it is as Noam Chomsky describes the purpose of our economic system as individual material gain, and explains why a society based on this principle will destroy itself in time.

http://www.adbusters.org/blogs/blackspot/noam_chomsky_rethinking_capitalism.html
Title: Homosexual Blackmail
Post by: garage on October 19, 2008, 11:34:27 AM

I am sure there's an ethical issue here. I don't doubt that there are many of you out there who might think there's not; I was discussing the other day this other scenario with a few people and, to my astonishment, most of them thought there's nothing wrong with it: Here it is:

X serves as a diplomatic officer of the Dominican Republic in Spain. He's being transfered to the US, in New York City to serve as an officer for his country. The CIA and FBI conduct surveillance of his activities while he's in NYC and find out he frequents gay bars and has promiscuous homosexual sex with many men. They take pictures of him to serve as evidence of his homosexuality. He is approached to become an agent for the CIA, otherwise his country authorities would be provided with the above-mentioned proof of his homosexuality. In his country being overtly homosexual is a bar to employment in the diplomatic service. Is it ethical for the CIA to do such a thing? Well, all of the people I was having the discussion said "yes," except for two of us. 


It is a shame that in this day and age this is still going on! It is totally unacceptable to use homosexual blackmale to recruit him. I have a close relative who is gay. I am sensitive to the repercussions of "outing" a homosexual; he is subject to ostracism by friends, family, and society in general -- and to depression and suicidal ideation at a rate much higher than the general population. Under the best of circumstances, blackmail is repugnant. In this instance, it is punitive, with potentially serious unforeseen ramifications. While working it is easier to get caught up in the enthusiasm and to remain focused on your mission, rather than looking critically at the ethical issues involved in the work. But the latter should always be in the mind of the person making the decisions.
Title: Re: Homosexual Blackmail
Post by: Topo Gigio on October 19, 2008, 08:04:35 PM

[...]

X serves as a diplomatic officer of the Dominican Republic in Spain. He's being transfered to the US, in New York City to serve as an officer for his country. The CIA and FBI conduct surveillance of his activities while he's in NYC and find out he frequents gay bars and has promiscuous homosexual sex with many men. They take pictures of him to serve as evidence of his homosexuality. He is approached to become an agent for the CIA, otherwise his country authorities would be provided with the above-mentioned proof of his homosexuality. In his country being overtly homosexual is a bar to employment in the diplomatic service. Is it ethical for the CIA to do such a thing? Well, all of the people I was having the discussion said "yes," except for two of us.
 

X's homosexuality should have no bearing whatsoever on the decision to recruit him. Blackmail, regardless of what he sought to hide, would be morally unacceptable because it would objectify him in such a way that he would become wholly dehumanized and transformed into a mere instrument and means for the CIA and FBI. The only wage the CIA and FBI would pay X would be the promise to keep his secret. He would be faced with the situation of losing universal freedom in order to sustain his right to privacy. Privacy is never privacy when it is under the duress of extortion. This kind of extortion is tantamount to slavery and slavery is always morally unacceptable.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: beyoncé on October 20, 2008, 06:54:00 PM

In an amazing scientific discovery, we have now come to know that antihomicidal defenses start early in life -- even before we are born, when we still inhabit the presumably cozy environment of our mother's womb. As Harvard biologist David Haig has discovered, even the womb presents its own dangers; a chief one of those is what is known as spontaneous abortions, many of which happen before a woman even knows she is pregnant. Indeed, we now know that many women who experience late periods and worry that they are pregnant, only to be relieved later when their periods begin again, have actually experienced spontaneous abortion of the growing fetus. According to Haig's findings, these often undetected miscarriages occur when the mother's body has sensed that the fetus is in poor health or possesses genetic abnormalities.

Remarkably, Haig also discovered that a defense mechanism has evolved to outwit the mother's body and protect the fetus. This is the fetal production of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), which is a hormone the fetus secretes into the mother's bloodstream. The female body appears to "interpret" high levels of hCG as a sign that a fetus is healthy and viable, and so does not spontaneously abort. Even the womb is a hostile environment where one's own interests must be protected at the cost of another's. Even in that most sacred place we are potential murder victims.


(http://img412.imageshack.us/img412/4597/fehh1.jpg)

For the sake of truth, clog, hCG is produced by the placenta, not the fetus itself. Shortly after a woman's egg is fertilized by her male partner's sperm and is implanted in the lining or the womb (uterus), a placenta begins to form. This organ will help nourish the developing new life. The placenta produces hCG, whose presence, along with other hormones, helps maintain the early stages of pregnancy. After implantation, the level of detectable hCG rises very rapidly, approximately doubling in quantity every two days until a peak is reached between the weeks 6 and 8. Over the next 10 or more weeks, the quantity of hCG slowly decreases. After this point, a much lower level is sustained for the duration of the pregnancy.

(http://img240.imageshack.us/img240/7376/placentahelduh5.jpg)

Here it is a placenta delivery (well, it features the baby's delivery as well, but right after that part you can see the placenta being taken out)

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/yt-yd8qBexzgF4/cesarean_section_part2/
Title: Narcissism
Post by: Morgan de Toi on October 22, 2008, 12:06:51 PM

Hitler was a visionary. Such an individual may be quite successful in his early life only to end up throwing it all away once an internal rebellion arises and he begins questioning, long before middle-age, "Is that all there is?" And the higher the rung and the more monnies involved, the less meaningful it all seems to become. The treadmill of youth that once ran so smoothly, now jerks along mindlessly. Their natural drive and curiosity are replaced by apathy. Disillusionment and dissatisfaction mount, until one day the hollowness inside them erupts, into a roaring crescendo of deafening, threatening, self-doubt. Without invitation or shove, they leap off the treadmill. Stepping on every sidewalk crack along the way, they head home, where in profound soberness, they take stock of their self and their life. What they learn decides whether they'll begin living as born and meant, or countinue much as before; by dictate of circumstance.

A visionary is born with a burning need to do something significant with his life; something meaningful and people-bettering. Others can imagine what ringing in the ears is like, but only a visionary knows what an internal clock sounds and feels like. For him, time is always running; always winding down. Why they, alone, have and hear this tick-tock is unknown. Characteristically, and in one form or another, their earliest and most frequently asked questions is, "What purpose, this human?" They intrinsically feel a need to do something significant, "but what?" niggles and bothers endlessly. However long it takes, however many libraries of opinion they swallow, or trails they traipse, pursuit of purpose can have a visionary chewing up life in a virtual feeding frenzy, searching for reasons to justify their being. They go through careers, through friends and experiences, like an August prairie grassfire -- and all to the accompainiment of an internal tick-tock marking time's passage.

Visionaries focus on the whole, with two assumptions. Assumption 1: If they can envision, then doing MUST be possible. Assumption 2: Essential parts and pieces will assemble, and arrange appropriately within the larger context, when wanted and as needed. These individuals won't give up. To them, obstacles mean that alternatives have yet to be found and tried. Their 360-degree perspective glasses are the secret behind a visionary's creativity, but it's their unwavering confidence in outcomes, based on 2 firm assumptions, that proves their power and leads to uncommon success. These individuals tend to be the most boldly risk-taking of all. When visionary stops rationalizing, stops trying to fit into logic-built molds and starts trusting intuition instead, they tap into unfathomable good luck. Timing...in, trying...in, doing...in, life, is the second secret of his success. Their now is one tick-tock faster than others'. Intellect and ego become a formidable combination, when the intuitive bee settles in a visionary bonnet. Changing is to was, by replacement with next, is their name's fame and claim. Their birth responsibility is betterment, of others and world. Their tend is to do both frequently.

Charisma is their default birth setting, and it proves one thing -- the Creator's favorite form of humor is irony. A visionary has a "presence thing" that others initially sense as intimidating. It's an energy born of confidence, that pulses and vibrates, yet belies the often shy individual. This irony is no secret to them. Rather than rail at the unfairness, they overcome their presence anomaly, by moving beyond shyness and approaching others first. Otherwise, they may spend much time alone. Such an individual relates readily and easily with almost any other. However, when wanted or when advantageous, they can and will lean on their default intimidation, to control others and situations, personally and/or professionally. Visionaries both feel and think as they speak, and often think clearest when challenged or pressured. Leather breath -- putting their foot in their mouth -- is not a trait of them, though razor-barbed rebuttal is. As others speak, they intuitively follow along, conjuring pictoral images of the conversation. They can be totally unabashed about asking questions, regardless of how simple or inane their query doth seem to others. Some want to know, some like to know, some prefer not knowing; but visionary must. If cats, they would have long been extinct, due to curiosity.


FYI, a visionary may well be a narcissist! Some narcissism is an essential part of all of us from birth, with exclusive self-love possibly not being as abnormal as previously thought. Narcissism is the libidinal compliment to the egoism of the instinct of self-preservation, or more simply, the desire and energy that drives our instinct to survive. Freud, who coined the term, observes in "Totem and Taboo" that children and primitive people exhibit what he calls "magical thinking". An example of magical thinking would be believing that you can have an effect on reality by wishing or willpower. This demonstrates a belief in the self as powerful and able to change external realities, which Freud believed was part of normal human development (primary narcissism). Secondary narcissism is a pathological condition which occurs when the libido withdraws from objects outside of the self. Freud further claimed that it is an extreme form of the narcissism that is part of all of us.

To care for someone is to convert ego-libido into object-libido by giving some self-love to another person, which leaves less ego-libido available for primary narcissism and protecting and nurturing the self. When that affection is returned so is the libido, thus restoring primary narcissism and self worth. Any failure to achieve, or disruption of, this balance causes psychological disturbances. In such a case primary narcissism can only be restored by withdrawing object-libido (also called, object-love), to replenish ego-libido. According to Freud, as a child grows, and his ego develops, he is constantly giving of his self-love to people and objects, the first of which is usually his mother. This diminished self-love should be replenished by the affection and caring returned to him.

(http://img406.imageshack.us/img406/6097/narcissus2qr2.jpg)

There are two types of narcissists: the somatic narcissist and the cerebral narcissist. The somatic type relies on his body and sexuality as Sources of Narcissistic Supply (NS). The cerebral narcissist uses his intellect, his intelligence and his professional achievements to obtain the same. Narcissists are either predominantly cerebral or overwhelmingly somatic. In other words, they either generate their N supply by using their bodies or by flaunting their minds. The somatic narcissist flashes his sexual conquests, parades his possessions, puts his muscles on ostentatious display, brags about his physical aesthetics or sexual prowess or exploits, is often a health freak and a hypochondriac. The cerebral narcissist is a know-it-all, haughty and intelligent "computer". He uses his awesome intellect, or knowledge (real or pretended) to secure adoration, adulation and admiration. To him, his body and its maintenance are a burden and a distraction. Both types are autoerotic (psychosexually in love with themselves, with their bodies or with their brains). Both types prefer masturbation to adult, mature, interactive, multi-dimensional and emotion-laden sex.

The cerebral narcissist is often celibate (even when he has a girlfriend or a spouse). He prefers pornography and sexual auto-stimulation to the real thing. The cerebral narcissist is sometimes a latent (hidden, not yet outed) homosexual. The somatic narcissist uses other people's bodies to masturbate. Sex with him – pyrotechnics and acrobatics aside – is likely to be an impersonal and emotionally alienating and draining experience. The partner is often treated as an object, an extension of the somatic narcissist, a toy, a warm and pulsating vibrator. It is a mistake to assume type-constancy. In other words, all narcissists are both cerebral and somatic. In each narcissist, one of the types is dominant. So, the narcissist is either largely cerebral – or dominantly somatic. But the other, recessive (manifested less frequently) type, is there. It is lurking, waiting to erupt.

While many psychologists would call narcissism a disorder, this trait can be quite beneficial for top bosses, and it's certainly less pathological than psychopathy. The narcissistic CEO can be portrayed as a grandiose egotist who is on a mission to help humanity in the abstract even though he's often insensitive to the real people around him. Apple's Steve Jobs, General Electric's Jack Welch, Intel's Andy Grove, Microsoft's Bill Gates, and Southwest Airlines' Herb Kelleher are counted as "productive narcissists," or PNs. Narcissists are visionaries who attract hordes of followers, which can make them excel as innovators, but they're poor listeners and they can be awfully touchy about criticism. These people don't have much empathy. When Bill Gates tells someone, 'That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard,' or Steve Jobs calls someone a bozo, they're not concerned about people's feelings. They see other people as a means toward their ends. But they do have a sense of changing the world -- in their eyes, improving the world. They build their own view of what the world should be and get others recruited to their vision. However, productive narcissists can become "drunk with power" and turn destructive.

Sexual narcissism is the erotic preoccupation with oneself as a sexual being: a desire to merge sexually with a mirror image of oneself. The singer Madonna and Paris Hilton have displayed sexual narcissism.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: Roberto Garcia on October 22, 2008, 03:00:25 PM

The belief that violence is a reasonable and often necessary route to achieving our aims goes unquestioned in most societies. Violence is thought to be the nature of things. It's what works. It seems inevitable -- the last and, often, the first resort in conflicts. This Myth of Redemptive Violence is the real myth of the modern world. It, and not Judaism or Christianity or Islam, is the dominant religion in our society today.

Walter Wink, a professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in N.Y.C., in an article first published by Bible Society's Spring 1999 issue of The Bible in TransMission, further expalains that our very origin is violence. Killing is in our genes. Humanity is not the originator of evil, but merely finds evil already present and perpetuates it. Human beings are thus naturally incapable of peaceful coexistence. Order must continually be imposed upon us from on high: men over women, masters over slaves, priests over laity, aristocrats over peasants, rulers over people. Unquestioning obedience is the highest virtue, and order the highest religious value.

In short, the Myth of Redemptive Violence is the ideology of conquest. Ours is neither a perfect nor perfectible world, but a theater of perpetual conflict in which the prize goes to the strong. Peace through war, security through strength: these are the core convictions that arise from this ancient historical religion. The Babylonian myth is as universally present today as at any time in its long and bloody history. It is the dominant myth in contemporary America.


In the aftermath of World War I, which some optimists were calling the war to end all wars, the philosopher George Santayana demurred, "Only the dead have seen the end of war." This sort of fatalism is still widespread today, and it cuts across political affiliations. Whether they are hawks or doves, on the left or on the right, many people have come to accept war as inevitable, even "in our genes." The obvious problem with such fatalism is that it can become self-fulfilling. Our first step toward ending war must be to believe that we can do it.

We also need to come to grips with the scale of the problem. As far back as anthropologists have peered into human history and pre-history, they have found evidence of group bloodshed. In "War Before Civilization" Lawrence Keeley estimates that as many as 95% of primitive societies engaged in at least occasional warfare, and many fought constantly. Tribal combat usually involved skirmishes and ambushes rather than pitched battles. But over time the chronic fighting could produce mortality rates as high as 50%.

This violence, some scholars argue, is an inevitable consequence of innate male ambition and agression. "Males have evolved to possess strong appetites for power," the anthropologist Richard Wrangham contends in "Demonic Males," "because with extraodrinary power comes extraordinary reproductive success." As evidence for this hypothesis, Wrangham cites studies of societies such as the Yanomamo, an Amazonian tribe. Yanomamo men from different villages often engage in lethal raids and counter-raids. Like most tribal societies, the anthropologist Napoleon Chagnon, who has observed the Yanomamo for decades, found that killers on average have twice as many wives and three times as many children as non-killers.

But Chagnon, significantly, has rejected the notion that Yanomamo warriors are compelled to fight by their aggressive instincts. Truly compulsive, out-of-control killers, Chagnon explains, quickly get killed themselves rather than living long enough to have many wives and children. Successful warriors are usually quite contolled and calculating; they fight because that is how a male advances in their society. Moreover, many Yanomamo men have confessed to Chagnon that they loathe war and wish it could be abolished from their culture -- and in fact rates of violence have recently dropped dramatically as Yanomamo villages have accepted the laws and mores of the outside world.

In his classic book "On Agression," the biologist Konrad Lorenz acknowledged that it might be possible to "breed out the aggressive drive by eugenic planning." But that would be a huge mistake, Lorenz argued, because aggression is a vital part of our humanity. It plays a role in almost all human endeavors, including science, the arts, business, politics, and sports. Aggression can serve the cause of peace. There are, for example, some extremely aggressive peace activists.

Even if warfare is at least in part biologically based -- and what human behavior isn't? -- we cannot end it by altering our biology. Modern war is primarily a social and political phenomenon, and we need social and political solutions to end it. Many such solutions have been proposed, but all are problematic. One perennial plan is for all nations to yield power to a global institution that can enforce peace. This was the vision that inspired the League of Nations and the UN. But neither the US nor any other major power is likely to entrust its national security to an international entity any time soon. And even if we did, how would we ensure that a global military force does not become repressive?

One encouraging finding to emerge from political science is that democracies rarely, if ever, fight each other. But does that mean democracies such as the US should use military means to force countries with no democratic tradition to accept this form of governance? If history teaches us something, it is that war often begets more war. Religion has been prescribed as a solution to war and aggression. After all, most religions preach love and forgiveness, and they prohibit killing, at least in principle. But in practice, of course, religion has often inspired rather than inhibited bloodshed.

We will abolish war someday. The only questions are how, and how soon.


People should not look for step-by-step plans on how to be successful or happy; for one, you shouldn't expect to see a lecturing visiting your hometown anytime soon. Such is counterproductive to all one stands for and encourages. Trust You to know what's right and best. Take what feels right from this work of human respect and love, and use to own best advantage and benefit. Ignore the rest! You don't need someone to tell you how to live a meaningful and fulfilling life, as defined and desired by you. Our goal is to cut away extraneous crap so you can see for yourself what others have seen, admired, and respected about you; things that you may not have heard before, but may benefit from knowing.
Title: Re: Suicide, practice of medicine, drugs, sex - Outside State Jurisdiction
Post by: gate on October 24, 2008, 05:47:23 PM

[...] situations where a person receives different or contradictory messages. [...]


Right on the money! Consider, for instance, this scenario: you buy a dog and name him Stay. It's kinda fun, after all, to call him ... "Come here, Stay! Come here, Stay!" He will go insane. Over time, he'll probably just ignore you and keep typing.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: a g a p e on October 24, 2008, 08:31:28 PM

[...] situations where a person receives different or contradictory messages. [...]


Right on the money! Consider, for instance, this scenario: you buy a dog and name him Stay. It's kinda fun, after all, to call him ... "Come here, Stay! Come here, Stay!" He will go insane. Over time, he'll probably just ignore you and keep typing.


Great post, gate - Steven Wright has some awesome quotes indeed!
Title: The Rorschach
Post by: charisma on October 27, 2008, 05:25:42 PM

[...] situations where a person receives different or contradictory messages. [...]


Right on the money! Consider, for instance, this scenario: you buy a dog and name him Stay. It's kinda fun, after all, to call him ... "Come here, Stay! Come here, Stay!" He will go insane. Over time, he'll probably just ignore you and keep typing.


Hahaha - so funny, gate! Anyway, your example showcases how a certain message carries 2  contradictory meanings - imagine prompts (be them words, pictures, whatever) that have several meanings, (even contradictory to one another, some completely neutral) and so on. The interpretative work of the analyst becomes very difficult, with the results of the analysis being quite questionable. Take for instance, the Rorschach test. Its inkblots are purportedly ambiguous, structureless entities which are to be given a clear structure by the interpreter.

(http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/6321/inkblot_hed.gif)

Let's say a psychologist is showing you the first of 10 cards in the Rorschach inkblot test. Perhaps you see a fox's head, a bat, or a butterfly. That's good. The more straightforward, the better. It's okay to be creative if you can justify your response. But whatever you do, don't groan, get emotional, or make irrelevant comments. Don't put your hands on the cards to block out parts. And don't say you see nothing but an inkblot. This advice on how to achieve a normal score on a Rorschach test is given by the Fathers' Rights To Custody (FRTC) organization, which assists fathers involved in court custody battles. "The FRTC's position on the use of the Rorschach test is that it is an inappropriate and unreliable test for use in the context of a child custody evaluation," the organization says on its Web site. The value of the Rorschach inkblot test, a projective personality test that has been widely used for more than 8 decades, is being questioned by more than just disenfranchised fathers. In recent years, academics also have attacked the Rorschach, saying that it lacks scientific validity.

Scott O. Lilienfeld, associate professor of psychology at Emory, recently co-authored articles in the American Psychological Society's journal and in Scientific American questioning the use of the Rorschach test and other projective tools in clinical and legal settings. "Someone could lose custody largely on the basis of their Rorschach responses," Lilienfeld says. "Some clinicians use the Rorschach by itself to make diagnoses. The scientific evidence does not support this." The controversy made the front page of the New York Times science section, pitting critics against supporters of the Rorschach. "What's in an Inkblot?" asked the headline. "Some Say, Not Much." These aren't simply academic skirmishes over methods of interpretation: Lilienfeld and others are genuinely concerned about how these tests are applied–or misapplied, as the case may be. "The Rorschach tends to overpathologize," he says, "meaning it is more typical for a normal person to score as pathological than vice versa."

False diagnoses can have devastating consequences. As the most popular projective test, the Rorschach is administered to hundreds of thousands of people each year. In a survey of American Psychological Association members, 82% said they used the Rorschach "occasionally" and 43 percent "frequently." Results are used as an aid in diagnosing mental illness, deciding child custody and criminal cases, and evaluating prisoners' parole status. Although he has never had a private practice, Lilienfeld administered the Rorschach numerous times while in graduate school at the University of Minnesota ("a fact about which I now have some guilt," he says), and had a full course in its scoring and interpretation. "I can't say I found it especially helpful," he says. "Administering and scoring it probably heightened my skepticism." The Rorschach inkblot test was developed in the 1920s by Hermann Rorschach, a young Swiss psychologist who got the idea from a popular European parlor game that involved making inkblots and telling stories about them.

Like all projective tests, the Rorschach presents viewers with ambiguous images and asks them to interpret the images, thereby eliciting their thoughts, fears, motives, and fantasies. The 10 symmetrical inkblots used in the test (5 contain color, 5 are black and gray) are always the same, given in a specific order, and are supposed to be kept secret from the public to ensure "spontaneous" answers that give clues to people's personalities – and personality disorders. The Rorschach originally came under fire in the 1950s and '60s because it lacked standardized procedures for its administration and scoring. In the 1970s, experts came up with the Comprehensive System, a detailed set of instructions for delivering the test and interpreting the responses. But Lilienfeld and like-minded colleagues, including James M. Wood of the University of Texas at El Paso and Howard N. Garb of the University of Pittsburgh, say that even the revised version of the Rorschach still falls short on two important criteria: reliability and validity. Reliability is a measure of a test's capacity to produce similar results no matter who interprets or "grades" the responses. Validity means the test's results would be consistent with other tests that measure the same traits.

"When it comes to projective techniques, you often can't make strong scientific or empirical claims," Lilienfeld says. "And you should either be able to show that they work, or be open with clients that you’re not using scientific methods." Irving B. Weiner, a clinical professor of psychiatry and behavioral medicine at the University of South Florida and president of the International Rorschach Society, says the Rorschach test is widely used around the world by competent professionals to detect disorders like schizophrenia and depression and there are abundant journal articles and research supporting it. "Three or four people are churning out all these articles saying they don't think the Rorschach is any good," he says, "but they aren't giving an even-handed review of the literature." Weiner agrees the Rorschach test alone shouldn't be used to make determinations of child custody or other legal matters. "Nor should any other single test. That's not what it's for," he says. "It is intended to identify aspects of how people function. It's helpful because it can identify things people don't talk about."

Evaluators of the Rorschach score responses on more than a hundred characteristics, including whether the viewer looked at the whole blot or just parts, whether the detected images were unusual, and whether images were seen in the blot itself or in the white background. Projective tests like the Rorschach, the TAT (Thematic Apperception Test), which features cards with drawings of ambiguous situations, mostly featuring people, and the Draw-A-Person (clients are asked to draw a person of the same sex and the opposite sex) can take hours to administer and score, and rely heavily on examiner interpretation and, in some part, intuition. Lilienfeld and his colleagues say until better projective tests are constructed, clinicians would do well to stick to methods that have been proven both valid and reliable–such as self-report questionnaires like the MMPI (Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2) and structured psychiatric interviews. Even if the Rorschach is used solely as a therapeutic tool, there is still potential for abuse, Lilienfeld cautions. "People coming in to psychotherapy are vulnerable," he says. "They are looking for solutions, for answers to problems, and desire to believe that therapy will yield important truths." Perhaps the Rorschach test can, as claimed, provide an "X-ray of the mind." But, asks Lilienfeld, whose mind: that of the client or the examiner?

http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&id=k6-NvT1I278C&dq=interpretation+rorschach&printsec=frontcover&source=web&ots=C1-MjWeDrD&sig=ObKuYSxWJkOZxArUfRZQw_mZkLc&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=7&ct=result#PPP1,M1
Title: Misuse of Psychological Tests in Forensic Settings: Some Horrible Examples
Post by: e m b l e m on October 27, 2008, 08:51:59 PM
You can read about Misuse of Rorschach here:

http://www.deltabravo.net/custody/misuse.php

And for the fun of it, you can take the test here:

http://theinkblot.com/
Title: Re: The Rorschach
Post by: R e n é on October 28, 2008, 02:46:49 PM

(http://www.avatarhosting.net/pics/6321/inkblot_hed.gif)

[...] This advice on how to achieve a normal score on a Rorschach test is given by the Fathers' Rights To Custody (FRTC) organization, which assists fathers involved in court custody battles. "The FRTC's position on the use of the Rorschach test is that it is an inappropriate and unreliable test for use in the context of a child custody evaluation," the organization says on its Web site. The value of the Rorschach inkblot test, a projective personality test that has been widely used for more than 8 decades, is being questioned by more than just disenfranchised fathers. In recent years, academics also have attacked the Rorschach, saying that it lacks scientific validity.

[...]


In any event, I don't think courts would accept the Rorschach as the only test on which to decide as to the propriety of a parent being given the custody of the children. I mean, sometimes people exaggerate when they say they lost the custody battle "solely because of a test."
Title: "Top Gun"
Post by: res extensa on October 28, 2008, 05:09:32 PM

Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?


Here it is the entire thing

Could Tom Cruise Sue "South Park" For Suggesting He is Gay? And Even If He Could, Should He?

By JULIE HILDEN
julhil@aol.com

(http://images.findlaw.com/writ/julie.hilden.jpg)

Tuesday, Dec. 06, 2005

A recent episode of the television animated comedy "South Park" mocked Tom Cruise -- suggesting that he is homosexual, and lying to hide that fact. Could Cruise bring a defamation suit against the show? In the past, Cruise has sued those who have made the very same claim. Indeed, when Cruise was married to Nicole Kidman, the couple made a point of doing so: In 1997, Kidman told Ladies' Home Journal that when reports claimed their marriage was a sham, "[W]e are going to sue over it. It gets to a point where you have to protect your children." Now that Cruise is set to marry Katie Holmes, who's pregnant with his child, it seems unlikely that he will take a different view. Could Cruise successfully sue "South Park"? And more broadly, should he continue his campaign of directly combating the claim that he's homosexual, or rethink the ethics of bringing such lawsuits?

The South Park Episode: Treading the Boundary of Parody and Satire

The relevant "South Park" episode -- entitled "Trapped in the Closet" -- self-consciously skirts the outermost edges of the First Amendment's protection for parody. A court would probably deem it constitutionally protected, but only barely. Defamation requires a "statement of fact" -- and for this reason, most parody, because of its fictional nature, falls outside defamation law by definition. But this is the rare parody that, fairly read, does make a statement of fact. In the episode, the animated version of Cruise literally goes into a closet, and won't come out. Other characters beg him to "come out of the closet," including the animated version of his ex-wife, Nicole Kidman. The Kidman character promises Cruise that if he comes out of the closet, neither she nor "Katie" will judge him. But the Cruise character claims he isn't "in the closet," even though he plainly is. No one could miss that the episode's creators are taking a stance and making a statement -- that the real Cruise is gay and hiding it. The use of the euphemism "in the closet" -- used to refer to someone who is homosexual but who has not admitted his or her homosexuality to friends, family, or the public -- is transparent. Interestingly, the episode itself indicates that its creators know well that they may be defaming Cruise, and they know of his litigious history. The joke disclaimer preceding the episode announces that "All characters and events on this show -- even those based on real persons -- are entirely fictional." At the end of the episode, the Cruise character threatens to bring a suit (not on the gay issue, but in defense of Scientology) "in England" -- which lacks a formal equivalent of the First Amendment. And all the credits at the end use the pseudonyms "John Smith" and "Jane Smith." Since the episode does indeed make a "statement of fact," the parody exception to defamation law won't save "South Park." Thus, the creators' only weapon against a possible suit by Cruise is a First Amendment defense. Fortunately for them, the Supreme Court has interpreted the defense very broadly.

The Broad First Amendment Protection for Parody and Satire

In Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music Inc., Justice Souter, writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, found that a 2 Live Crew song counted as parody. In so doing, Justice Souter quoted then-U.S. District Judge Pierre Leval as follows: "First Amendment protections do not apply only to those who speak clearly, whose jokes are funny, and whose parodies succeed." On this logic, the First Amendment gives breathing room to creative works even when they fail in their goals. Thus, here, the "South Park" episode is protected even if its literalization of the "in the closet" metaphor won't make a single viewer chuckle. The point is that it was at least trying to make people laugh. And probably, the very silliness of the literalization -- the fact that it was the least creative thing the creators possibly could have done -- did indeed amuse some viewers. "South Park's" appeal, after all, isn't its subtlety. But does it make a different that Cruise's would be a defamation case? Judge Leval originally stated this principle in the trademark context. And when Justice Souter applied this principle in the Campbell case, he did so in the copyright context.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPTk_C5wmsg&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Si-Kzw_MNI&feature=related
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: munee on October 30, 2008, 03:35:15 PM

[...] situations where a person receives different or contradictory messages. [...]


Right on the money! Consider, for instance, this scenario: you buy a dog and name him Stay. It's kinda fun, after all, to call him ... "Come here, Stay! Come here, Stay!" He will go insane. Over time, he'll probably just ignore you and keep typing.


;)
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: turquoise on November 04, 2008, 08:53:41 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPTk_C5wmsg&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Si-Kzw_MNI&feature=related


That's what I don't get, res, they go ahead and shoot the principal role in gay movies like these, and then try to have courts establish their being "straight"! Jesus M o t h e r @ # ! * i n g Christ!
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: did on November 06, 2008, 11:26:16 AM

It was Freud who first described the marriage between sensuality and organized violence -- e.g., the law school thinking way. "Libido" refers not only to the sexual drive, but to all aggressive acts. In his dual instinct theory, Freud stated that libido and aggression come under broader biological principles Eros (love) and Thanatos (death and self-destruction). More recent psychological theorists suggest that war -- including a nation's insatiable hunger for military power and the passion for armaments -- arises from a deep-seated fear of death, a fear that is, naturally, basic to the human condition. This death fear creates the paradoxical situation where institutionalized murder (war, capital punishment, "right to bear arms," mob violence, legitimized military statism) grows out of something known as "radical pain."

According to this theory, there are three types of pain:

- Physical pain (old age, sickness, and dying);
- Emotional pain (being away from a loved one, being forced to be with people one hates); and
- Radical pain (knowledge -- or fear of knowledge -- of the intransigence of life, and one's own inevitable move towards chaos and entropy).

In other words, the lunacy of a Hitler or a Pol Pot (or even America's own militarists) grows out of an unacknowledged and unrecognized terror of the inevitable, the most inevitable fact of life. Namely, death.


Combine these two things: an irrational world and a person who's looking out at it and trying to make it rational. You've experienced that kind of feeling at least once -- you're sitting at your desk and looking at the circus around you, thinking, "I'm the only sane one here." This is how human beings as a group look out onto the world. But humans don't just think that they're the sane ones; they also try to impose that sanity and order on the circus around them. The world laughs at them when they do this -- and this absurdity.
Title: Re: Narcissism
Post by: das Geviert on November 09, 2008, 05:56:18 PM

FYI, a visionary may well be a narcissist! Some narcissism is an essential part of all of us from birth, with exclusive self-love possibly not being as abnormal as previously thought. Narcissism is the libidinal compliment to the egoism of the instinct of self-preservation, or more simply, the desire and energy that drives our instinct to survive. Freud, who coined the term, observes in "Totem and Taboo" that children and primitive people exhibit what he calls "magical thinking". An example of magical thinking would be believing that you can have an effect on reality by wishing or willpower. This demonstrates a belief in the self as powerful and able to change external realities, which Freud believed was part of normal human development (primary narcissism). Secondary narcissism is a pathological condition which occurs when the libido withdraws from objects outside of the self. Freud further claimed that it is an extreme form of the narcissism that is part of all of us.

To care for someone is to convert ego-libido into object-libido by giving some self-love to another person, which leaves less ego-libido available for primary narcissism and protecting and nurturing the self. When that affection is returned so is the libido, thus restoring primary narcissism and self worth. Any failure to achieve, or disruption of, this balance causes psychological disturbances. In such a case primary narcissism can only be restored by withdrawing object-libido (also called, object-love), to replenish ego-libido. According to Freud, as a child grows, and his ego develops, he is constantly giving of his self-love to people and objects, the first of which is usually his mother. This diminished self-love should be replenished by the affection and caring returned to him.

(http://img406.imageshack.us/img406/6097/narcissus2qr2.jpg)

There are two types of narcissists: the somatic narcissist and the cerebral narcissist. The somatic type relies on his body and sexuality as Sources of Narcissistic Supply (NS). The cerebral narcissist uses his intellect, his intelligence and his professional achievements to obtain the same. Narcissists are either predominantly cerebral or overwhelmingly somatic. In other words, they either generate their N supply by using their bodies or by flaunting their minds. The somatic narcissist flashes his sexual conquests, parades his possessions, puts his muscles on ostentatious display, brags about his physical aesthetics or sexual prowess or exploits, is often a health freak and a hypochondriac. The cerebral narcissist is a know-it-all, haughty and intelligent "computer". He uses his awesome intellect, or knowledge (real or pretended) to secure adoration, adulation and admiration. To him, his body and its maintenance are a burden and a distraction. Both types are autoerotic (psychosexually in love with themselves, with their bodies or with their brains). Both types prefer masturbation to adult, mature, interactive, multi-dimensional and emotion-laden sex.

The cerebral narcissist is often celibate (even when he has a girlfriend or a spouse). He prefers pornography and sexual auto-stimulation to the real thing. The cerebral narcissist is sometimes a latent (hidden, not yet outed) homosexual. The somatic narcissist uses other people's bodies to masturbate. Sex with him – pyrotechnics and acrobatics aside – is likely to be an impersonal and emotionally alienating and draining experience. The partner is often treated as an object, an extension of the somatic narcissist, a toy, a warm and pulsating vibrator. It is a mistake to assume type-constancy. In other words, all narcissists are both cerebral and somatic. In each narcissist, one of the types is dominant. So, the narcissist is either largely cerebral – or dominantly somatic. But the other, recessive (manifested less frequently) type, is there. It is lurking, waiting to erupt.

While many psychologists would call narcissism a disorder, this trait can be quite beneficial for top bosses, and it's certainly less pathological than psychopathy. The narcissistic CEO can be portrayed as a grandiose egotist who is on a mission to help humanity in the abstract even though he's often insensitive to the real people around him. Apple's Steve Jobs, General Electric's Jack Welch, Intel's Andy Grove, Microsoft's Bill Gates, and Southwest Airlines' Herb Kelleher are counted as "productive narcissists," or PNs. Narcissists are visionaries who attract hordes of followers, which can make them excel as innovators, but they're poor listeners and they can be awfully touchy about criticism. These people don't have much empathy. When Bill Gates tells someone, 'That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard,' or Steve Jobs calls someone a bozo, they're not concerned about people's feelings. They see other people as a means toward their ends. But they do have a sense of changing the world -- in their eyes, improving the world. They build their own view of what the world should be and get others recruited to their vision. However, productive narcissists can become "drunk with power" and turn destructive.

Sexual narcissism is the erotic preoccupation with oneself as a sexual being: a desire to merge sexually with a mirror image of oneself. The singer Madonna and Paris Hilton have displayed sexual narcissism.


A way in which we may approach the study of narcissism is by observing the erotic life of human beings, with its many kinds of differentiation in man and woman. Just as object-libido at first concealed ego-libido from our observation, so too in connection with the object-choice of infants (and of growing children) what we first noticed was that they derived their sexual objects from their experiences of satisfaction. The first autoerotic sexual satisfactions are experienced in connection with the vital functions which serve the purpose of self-preservation. The sexual instincts are at the outset attached to the satisfaction of the ego-instincts; only later do they become independent of these, and even then we have an indication of that original attachment in the fact that the persons who are concerned with a child's feeding, care and protection become his earliest sexual objects: that is to say, in the first place his mother or a substitute for her. Side by side, however, with this type and source of object-choice, which may be called the 'anaclitic' or 'attachment' type, psychoanalytical research has revealed a second type. We have discovered, especially clearly in people whose libidinal development has suffered some disturbance, such as perverts and homosexuals, that in their later choice of love-objects they have taken as a model not their mother but their own selves. They are plainly seeking themselves as a love-object, and exhibiting a type of object-choice which must be termed 'narcissistic'. In this observation we have the strongest of the reasons which have led us to adapt the hypothesis of narcissism.

We have, however, not concluded that human beings are divided into two sharply differentiated groups, according as their object-choice conforms to the anaclitic or to the narcissistic type; we assume rather that both kinds of object-choice are open to each individual, though he may show a preference for one or the other. We say that a human being has originally two sexual objects -- himself and the woman who nurses him -- and in doing so we are postulating a primary narcissism in everyone, which may in some cases manifest itself in a dominating fashion in his object-choice.

A person may love: --

(1) According to the narcissistic type:
     (a) what he himself is (i.e. himself),
     (b) what he himself was,
     (c) what he himself would like to be,
     (d) someone who was once part of himself,

(2) According to the anaclitic (attachment) type:
     (a) the woman who feeds him
     (b) the man who protects him

and the succession of substitutes who take their place.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: ceco on November 11, 2008, 11:24:08 AM

All psychology ultimately stems from Freudian assumptions about the psyche, so Farrell's book would be one shattering the glass dome we live in, the dome built of Freudian constructs that, some people argue, would forever eliminate meaningful human interaction by reducing all actions and all discourse to the mere product of latent desires. Much more than just another Freud-bashing book, some consider it a systematic dismantling of the fantasy world -- built by a cocaine addict named Sigmund Freud -- in which many of us choose to spend our lives. Since the term paranoid is so loaded with stigma, the question leaps to mind immediately: Is this new book scholarship or slander? We thought we had heard it all, from the current crop of baiters and bashers, about the evil man Freud. But get ready for this one: according to Farrell, Freud was paranoid. John Farrell makes the case that even Freud's self-mockery is suspect, the work of a corrosive modernist outlook. Freud, Farrell declares, was paranoid -- just like Don Quixote, one of his favorite fictional characters, and Daniel Paul Schreber, a modern-day paranoiac whom Freud celebrated as "wonderful." Like all paranoiacs, Freud had delusions of grandeur and persecution fantasies and was committed to a belief that nothing in the world is ever what it appears to be.


Freud's approach to paranoia, as to psychopathology in general, brought to it a perspective that is simultaneously dynamic, topographical, genetic, and economic. It is dynamic in that Freud regards paranoia as deriving from a form of psychic activity, namely projection; topographical because this projection, initially connected with incestuous fantasies and later with homosexuality, is based on unconscious impulses; and genetic because the seduction experiences that stimulate these incestuous or homosexual impulses occur at an early stage. Finally, this perspective is also economic in that paranoia, like every other symptom, is an "attempt at reconstruction" directed at protecting the subject from more acute problems. Freud took an interest in paranoia from the outset of his work, comparing it with other forms of psycho-pathology. His analysis (Freud, 1911c [1910]) of Daniel Paul Schreber's "Memoirs of My Nervous Illness," which contains the essence of his theories on the subject, nevertheless poses a few problems.

The connection between paranoia and homosexuality emerged late in Freud's work. Initially, if homosexual elements were present at all, they were overlooked and it was incestuous relationships or fantasies that were emphasized. In fact, the connection between homosexuality and paranoia seems to have resulted from some collaborative work by Freud, Carl Gustav Jung, and Sándor Ferenczi. Furthermore, the analysis of homosexuality based on the Memoirs differs from the analysis based on Leonardo da Vinci's childhood memory. Whereas the former involves a romantic fixation on someone of a different sex from the subject, the latter is entirely focused on his relations with someone of the same sex. What Schreber reveals of the progress of his "nervous illness" demonstrates few of the characteristics of paranoia, or even paraphrenia or paranoid dementia. In fact, he describes the natural and spontaneous development of a psychosis, throughout its progression and in all its forms, without any substantial medical intervention. Instigated by a moment of hypochondria that rapidly turns into a catatonic breakdown, this progression leads him into a paraphrenic phase that gives way to paranoia before concluding in a transvestite perversion with strong hysterical components, which is followed by a rather successful professional reintegration.

Freud incorporates within paranoia the classic forms of delusions of persecution, erotomania, jealous delusions, and megalomania, but he overlooks querulousness and discursive mania. The formulas that Freud puts forward for understanding repression and the return of the repressed in paranoia are problematic in spite of their value. He suggests that a single formula — "I (a man) I love him" is denied in 4 ways:


Karl Abraham made some variations to these formulae to deal with manic-depressive psychoses. He grafted the essence of formula (a), that is, the inversion of the affect combined with projection, on to formula (d). The formula "I do not love anyone" that Freud proposes is only one of the possible consequences of "I do not love at all"; the other obvious consequence is "I do not love at all — I hate," or even "I hate the whole world," a fantasy that can appear in conjunction with "I love only myself." Schreber's delusion of grandeur in fact portrays a world that has been completely destroyed. Freud explains this fantasy purely in terms of libidinal decathexis but the need for libido to be cathected does not necessarily mean that this concerns the ego. The libido can disperse, with "I hate the whole world" being extended into "including myself." Schreber attempted suicide and asked to be killed. Finally, formula (d) can also appear in another form in delusions of grandeur: "I do not love anyone — I love the whole world," which is expressed in the delusions of mystics concerning the salvation of humanity and the transformation of the world, which also appear in the Memoirs. There is a further equation of this: "I love the whole world, but the world hates me," which is expressed in paranoid masochism, when hatred presents itself as the guarantee of a supreme love.

The application of the formula for delusions of persecution (a) to the formula for jealous delusions (c) concerns the subject's feeling of persecution by the couple of whom he is jealous. The complete formula here is: "It is not I who love the man and the woman — it is they who love each other. I hate them"; and, by projection, "it is they who hate me," who despise me and so on. The formula (b) applied to formula (c) produces "It is not I who love the man and the woman — it is they who love me," a fantasy that is not unusual in erotic delusions, particularly in the form that leads to the "ménage à trois," whether preceding or following the jealousy, the pleasurable aspect of which barely conceals the anxiety. Daniel Lagache pioneered the study of the connection between erotomania and jealousy, as well as the study of ideas of homosexual infidelity in jealousy. There is also the application of formula (a) to formula (b) and vice versa, as elaborated by Luiz Eduardo Prado de Oliveira. In the first case, the formula for homosexual erotomanic delusion appears as: "I (a man) love him (a man)" and by projection: "I do not love him — he loves me," a fantasy that emerges clearly in Schreber's Memoirs and in clinical practice. In the second case, there is a close connection both between jealousy and erotomania and between erotic delusions and feelings of persecution. If these formulae are then applied to each other: "I love her (a woman). No, I hate her," and by projection, "I observe that she hates me," the woman appears as the man's persecutor, just as the man can appear as the woman's persecutor. These observations, entirely based on the wide range of phenomena in clinical practice, are an extension of the foundation constituted by Freud's work.

These developments as a whole illustrate the heuristic innovativeness of Freud's and they encompass a much broader spectrum of possibilities in the clinical field. Freud's for understanding paranoia also gave rise to the concept of foreclosure, developed by Lacan as a result of an error in the early French translations and initially accepted as an adequate basis alone for understanding the psychoses. At very early stage, Freud drew a distinction between three variations of repression: repression concerning affect alone; repression concerning mental representation alone; or, finally, in the most extreme case, concerning both affect and mental representations, in which all the processes occur outside the ego. In his early studies on paranoia, each of these forms of repression found an outlet in projection. In his Schreber study, Freud uses the term Verwerfung (foreclosure or repudiation) to characterize the third form of repression. Freud's first translators into French had simply — and incorrectly — retained the term "projection" Lacan, seeing this as a flagrant mistranslation and connecting it with his work on the symbolic law, introduced the term "foreclosure" (forclusion) in its place. In an everyday linguistic system such as Freud used, the term would have been better translated into French by the concept of "rejet" or "refus" ("rejection" or "refusal"), which is more closely reflected in the alternative English term repudiation. The correction of this translation error at the origin of the concept of foreclosure has certainly indicated a difficulty concerning the formation of psychoses and today this term is as widely accepted as the term "projective identification" which originates from Tausk's writings.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: boci on November 11, 2008, 01:18:44 PM

Freud's approach to paranoia, as to psychopathology in general, brought to it a perspective that is simultaneously dynamic, topographical, genetic, and economic. It is dynamic in that Freud regards paranoia as deriving from a form of psychic activity, namely projection; topographical because this projection, initially connected with incestuous fantasies and later with homosexuality, is based on unconscious impulses; and genetic because the seduction experiences that stimulate these incestuous or homosexual impulses occur at an early stage. Finally, this perspective is also economic in that paranoia, like every other symptom, is an "attempt at reconstruction" directed at protecting the subject from more acute problems. Freud took an interest in paranoia from the outset of his work, comparing it with other forms of psycho-pathology. His analysis (Freud, 1911c [1910]) of Daniel Paul Schreber's "Memoirs of My Nervous Illness," which contains the essence of his theories on the subject, nevertheless poses a few problems.

The connection between paranoia and homosexuality emerged late in Freud's work. Initially, if homosexual elements were present at all, they were overlooked and it was incestuous relationships or fantasies that were emphasized. In fact, the connection between homosexuality and paranoia seems to have resulted from some collaborative work by Freud, Carl Gustav Jung, and Sándor Ferenczi. Furthermore, the analysis of homosexuality based on the Memoirs differs from the analysis based on Leonardo da Vinci's childhood memory. Whereas the former involves a romantic fixation on someone of a different sex from the subject, the latter is entirely focused on his relations with someone of the same sex. What Schreber reveals of the progress of his "nervous illness" demonstrates few of the characteristics of paranoia, or even paraphrenia or paranoid dementia. In fact, he describes the natural and spontaneous development of a psychosis, throughout its progression and in all its forms, without any substantial medical intervention. Instigated by a moment of hypochondria that rapidly turns into a catatonic breakdown, this progression leads him into a paraphrenic phase that gives way to paranoia before concluding in a transvestite perversion with strong hysterical components, which is followed by a rather successful professional reintegration.

Freud incorporates within paranoia the classic forms of delusions of persecution, erotomania, jealous delusions, and megalomania, but he overlooks querulousness and discursive mania. The formulas that Freud puts forward for understanding repression and the return of the repressed in paranoia are problematic in spite of their value. He suggests that a single formula — "I (a man) I love him" is denied in 4 ways:

  • "I do not love him — I hate him," which is transformed by projection into, "He hates (persecutes) me," giving rise to delusions of persecution;
  • "I do not love him — I love her." As a result of projection, this becomes: "I observe that she loves me," which leads to erotomania;
  • "It is not I who love the man [or woman] — she [or he] loves him [or her]," which characterizes jealous delusions;
  • "I do not love at allI do not love any one," which becomes "I love only myself."

Karl Abraham made some variations to these formulae to deal with manic-depressive psychoses. He grafted the essence of formula (a), that is, the inversion of the affect combined with projection, on to formula (d). The formula "I do not love anyone" that Freud proposes is only one of the possible consequences of "I do not love at all"; the other obvious consequence is "I do not love at all — I hate," or even "I hate the whole world," a fantasy that can appear in conjunction with "I love only myself." Schreber's delusion of grandeur in fact portrays a world that has been completely destroyed. Freud explains this fantasy purely in terms of libidinal decathexis but the need for libido to be cathected does not necessarily mean that this concerns the ego. The libido can disperse, with "I hate the whole world" being extended into "including myself." Schreber attempted suicide and asked to be killed. Finally, formula (d) can also appear in another form in delusions of grandeur: "I do not love anyone — I love the whole world," which is expressed in the delusions of mystics concerning the salvation of humanity and the transformation of the world, which also appear in the Memoirs. There is a further equation of this: "I love the whole world, but the world hates me," which is expressed in paranoid masochism, when hatred presents itself as the guarantee of a supreme love.


ceco, the diagnosis of paranoid personality structure implies to many people a serious disturbance in mental health. This type of organization, however, exists on a continuum of severity from psychotic to normal. It may be that "healthier" paranoid people are rarer than "sicker" ones, but someone can have a paranoid character at any level of ego strength, identity integration, reality testing, and object relations. A paranoid person has to be in fairly deep trouble before he or she seeks (or is brought for) psychological help; paranoid people are not disposed to trust stangers. People with normal-level paranoid characters often seek out political roles, where their disposition to oppose themselves to forces they see as evil or threatening can find ready expression. Many reporters covering the 1992 American presidential elections ascribed paranoid characteristics to Ross Perot, but even some of these amateur diagnosticians probably voted for him on basis of realistic competence. J. Edgar Hoover was another high-functioning public figure who appears to have had a strong paranoid element in his personality. At the other end of the developmental continuum, some serial murderers who killed their victims out of the conviction that the victims were trying to murder him, and Charles Manson of the California "hippie" cult, exemplify the destructiveness of projection gone mad; that is, paranoia operating without the moderating effects of more mature ego processes and without a solid grounding in reality.

Because they see the sources of their suffering as outside themselves, paranoid people in the more disturbed range are likely to be more dangerous to others than to themselves. They are much less suicidal than equally disturbed depressives, although they have been known to kill themselves to preempt someone's else (imagined) imminent destruction of them. The angry, threatening qualities of many paranoid people have prompted speculations that one contrubutant to a paranoid orientation is a high degree of innate aggression or irritability. Affectively, paranoid people struggle not only with anger, resentment, vindictiveness and the other more hostile feelings, they also suffer overwhelmingly from fear. A combination of fear and shame? The downward-left eye movements common in paranoid people (the "shifty" quality that even non-professionals notice) are physically a compromise between the horizontal-left direction specific to the affect of pure fear and the straight-down direction of uncontaminated shame. Even the most grandiose paranoid person lives with the terror of harm from others and monitors each human interaction with extreme vigilance.  

As for shame, that affect is as great a menace to paranoid people as to narcissistic ones, but the danger is experienced quite differently by each type of person. Narcissistic people, even of the most arrogant variety, are subject to conscious feelings of shame if they are unmasked in certain ways. Their energies go into efforts to impress others so that the devalued self will not be exposed to them. Paranoid people, contrastingly, use denial and projection so powerfully that no sense of shame remains accessible within the self. The energies of the paranoid person are therefore spent on foiling the effects of those who are seen as bent on shaming and humiliating them. Also like narcissistic people, paranoid individuals are very vulnerable to envy. Unlike them, they handle it projectively. Resentment and jealousy, occasionally of delusional proportions, darken their lives. Sometimes these attitudes are directly projected, taking the form of the conviction that "others are out to get me because of the things about me that they envy"; more often they are ancillary to the denial and projection of other affects and impulses, as when a paranoid man, oblivious to his own normal phantasies of infidelity, becomes convinced his wife is dangerously attracted to others. Frequently involved in this kind of jealousy is an unconscious yearning for closeness with a person of the same sex. Because paranoid people confuse such longings with erotic homosexuality, an orientation that frightens them, the wishes are abhorred and denied. These desires for care from a person of the same gender then resurface as the conviction that it is, for example, one's girlfriend rather than oneself who wants to be more intimate with a mutual male friend.

Finally, paranoid people are profoundly burdened with guilt, a feeling that is acknowledged and projected in the same way that shame is. Some reasons for their deep sense of badness will be suggested: their unbearable burden of unconscious guilt is a feature that makes them so hard to help: they live in terror that when the therapist really gets to know them, he or she will be shocked by all their sins and depravities, and will reject them or punish them for their crimes.
Title: Re:
Post by: boci on November 11, 2008, 02:15:22 PM
By definition, projection dominates the psychology of the paranoid person. Depending on the patinet's ego strength and degree of stress, it may be a psychotic, borderline, or neurotic level of projection. In a frankly psychotic person, upsetting parts of self are projected and fully believed to be "out there," no matter how crazy the projections may seem to others. The paranoid schizophrenic who believes that homosexual Bulgarian agents have poisoned his water is projecting his aggression, his wish for same-sex closeness, his ethnocentrism, and his fantasies of power. He does not find ways of making his beliefs fit with conventional notions of reality; he may be quite convinced that he is the only one in the world who sees the threat. Because reality testing is by definition not lost in people at a borderline level of personality organization, paranoid patients in the borderline range project in such a way that those on whom disowned attitudes are projected are subtly provoked to feel those attitudes. This is projective identification: The person tries to get rid of certain feelings, yet retains empathy with them and needs to reassure the self that they are realistic. The borderline paranoid person works to make his or her projections "fit" the projective target. Thus the woman who disowns her hatred and envy announces to her therapist in an antagonistic manner that she can tell that the therapist is jealous of her accomplishments; interpretations given in a sympathetic spirit are reinterpreted by the client as evidence of envy-driven wishes to undermine and control, and soon the therapist, worn down by being steadily misunderstood, is hating the patient and envying her freedom to vent her spleen. In paranoid people at the neurotic level, internal issues are projected in a potentially ego-alien way. That is, the patient projects yet has some observing part of the self that eventually will be capable, in the context of a reliable relationship, of acknowledging the externalized contents of the mind as projection.

The need of the paranoid person to handle upsetting feelings projectively entails the use of an unusual degree of denial and its close relative, reaction formation. All human beings project; indeed, the universal disposition toward projection is the basis for transference, the process that makes analytic therapy possible. But paranoid people do it in the context of such a great need to disavow upsetting attitudes that it feels like a whole different process from projective operations in which denial is not so integral.

The main polarity in the self-representations of paranoid people is an impotent, humiliated, and despised image of self versus an omnipotent, vindicated, triumphant one. A tension between two images suffuses their subjective world. Cruelly, neither position affords any solace: A terror of abuse and contempt goes with the weak side of the polarity, while the strong side brings with it the inevitable side effect of psychological power, a crushing guilt. The weak side of this polarity is the degree of fear with which paranoid people chronically live. They never feel fully safe and spend an inordinate amount of their emotional energy scanning the environment for dangers. The grandiose side is evident in their self-referential stance: Everything that happens has something to do with them personally. The megalomania of paranoid people, whether unconscious or overt, burderns them with unbearable guilt. If I am omnipotent, then all kinds of terrible things are my fault. The intimate connection between guilt and paranoia can be intuitively comprehended by any of us who have felt culpable and then worried about being exposed and punished.

A complex and pervasive issue for many paranoid people is the combination of sexual identity confusion, longings for same-sex closeness, and associated preoccupations with homosexuality. A connection between paranoia and homosexual preoccupations has been frequently noted by clinicians and has been confirmed by some empirical studies. Paranoid people, even the minority of them who have acted on homoerotic feelings, may regard the idea of same-sex attraction as upsetting to a degree that is scarcely imaginable to the non-paranoid. As the brief triumph of Nazism demonstrates, when paranoid trends are shared by a whole culture or subculture, the most horrific possibilities arise. The paranoid preoccupation with homosexuality has sometimes been explained as reflecting "unconscious homosexual impulses." This locution is misleading, in that it is not usually genital urges that stimulate homophobia; it is loneliness and the wish for a soulmate. Because as children we were comfortable with peers of the same sex before we became comfortable with opposite-sex peers, and because people of the same sex are more like us than people of the opposite sex, when we are withdrawn from everyone, we are attracted to someone of the same sex. Unfortunately, the patient becomes aware of this attraction, misinterprets it as homosexuality, and this sets off the defenses. In other words, at the core of the self-experience of paranoid poeple is a profound emotional isolation and need for a "consensual validation" from a "chum."
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: researches on November 12, 2008, 12:15:26 PM

All psychology ultimately stems from Freudian assumptions about the psyche, so Farrell's book would be one shattering the glass dome we live in, the dome built of Freudian constructs that, some people argue, would forever eliminate meaningful human interaction by reducing all actions and all discourse to the mere product of latent desires. Much more than just another Freud-bashing book, some consider it a systematic dismantling of the fantasy world -- built by a cocaine addict named Sigmund Freud -- in which many of us choose to spend our lives. Since the term paranoid is so loaded with stigma, the question leaps to mind immediately: Is this new book scholarship or slander? We thought we had heard it all, from the current crop of baiters and bashers, about the evil man Freud. But get ready for this one: according to Farrell, Freud was paranoid. John Farrell makes the case that even Freud's self-mockery is suspect, the work of a corrosive modernist outlook. Freud, Farrell declares, was paranoid -- just like Don Quixote, one of his favorite fictional characters, and Daniel Paul Schreber, a modern-day paranoiac whom Freud celebrated as "wonderful." Like all paranoiacs, Freud had delusions of grandeur and persecution fantasies and was committed to a belief that nothing in the world is ever what it appears to be.


Freud's remarks on and off the platform provoked misunderstandings that generated controversy. Among other things, Freud was accused of advocating parricide, and of predicting that Negroes would eventually control the U.S. The parricide rumor grew out of a joke. President Hall had asked Freud's advice on what could be done for a sick male friend whose problem was an overly strict father, and Freud had replied, "Why, kill his father." The prediction about Negroes dominating the U.S. had also been a joke. Freud had told his follower Marie Bonaparte that in a few thousand years the white race might be extinct, to be replaced by the black race, and then he added lightly, "America is already threatened by the black race. And it serves her right. A country without even wild strawberries!"

It was at Clark University, one morning during breakfast, that Freud confided to Jung how much he was disconcerted by American women, admitting they gave him erotic dreams.
- "I haven't been able to sleep since I came to America," said Freud. "I continue to dream of prostitutes."
- "Well, why don't you do something about it?" asked Jung. Freud shrank back in horror.
- "But I'm a married man!" he exclaimed.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: vögeln on November 12, 2008, 02:59:50 PM

It is believed that Mussolini never killed anyone with his own hand -- he did command others to kill people, but he did not do anybody himself; Hitler, on the other hand, is known to have killed with his own hand.


[...] Thus the supporter of fascism or Stalinism escapes from freedom into a new idolatry in which Mussolini, a cowardly braggart, became a symbol for maleness and courage. Hitler, a maniac of destruction, was praised as the builder of a new Germany. [...]


What was the genesis of Hitler's evil? Many theories are given ranging from:

- born with one testicle
- testicle and/or part of penis bitten off by a goat
- overindulgent mother
- abused child with low self-esteem
- abusive father whose family secret was he had been sired by a Jew
- mother died in 1907 from cancer unsuccessfully treated by Jewish doctor
- syphilis
- syphilis caused by Jewish prostitute
- bad parenting
- Jewish suspect
- mental illness
- physical illness


Some historians have written that Hitler had been a male prostitute in Vienna at the time of his sojourn there, from 1907 to 1912 and that he practiced the same calling in Munich from 1912 to 1914. Seward, e.g., says Hitler was listed as a homosexual in Viennese police records. Rector writes that, as a young man, Hitler was often called "der Schoen Adolf" (the handsome Adolf) and that later his looks were also to some extent helpful in gaining big-money support from Ernst Ro[e]hm's circle of wealthy gay friends. The endless competition to prove one's "seriousness" in relation to others is, in essence, a zero-sum game predicated on violence, intimidation and humiliation. Do not fall prey to that notion that you can only inhabit the manhood 'I' in the act of addressing someone as 'You who are less than me.'"

(http://img186.imageshack.us/img186/3664/93605714gn4.png)

Now you and I know gay people. Some of us even have gay friends. But who do you know that is NOT gay is surrounded exclusively by gay men?


Hitler quit school at age 16 and in 1909 moved to Vienna, where he twice took and failed the Art Academy's entrance examination. Shortly after his move, August Kubizek, a young man from his hometown, joined him and they lived together for four months. Intensely jealous, Hitler wrote Kubizek, "I cannot endure it when you consort and converse with other young people." For the next several years, Hitler drifted aimlessly. Despite immense Nazi efforts to erase as much of his past as possible (by destroying his massive police records, for example) it is known that he spent 5 months at a men's hostel known as "a hub of homosexual activity." In May 1913, he moved with another young man to Munich (said to be "a regular El Dorado for homosexuals") and, in September 1914, joined the Bavarian army. He spent the war years as a behind-the-lines messenger, enjoying a long and active sexual relationship with another runner, Ernst Schmidt. At war's end, Hitler returned to Munich and more homosexual activities. He met at that time Capt. Ernst Roehm, a well-connected army officer who soon offered him his first job — as a political spy for the army within a newly organized workers' party.

Hitler's rise largely was due to the two brilliant homosexuals who mentored and tutored him: Roehm, a notorious pederast and a contemporary, and Dietrich Eckart, 21 years his senior. Roehm, a career staff officer during the war, had access to both secret army funds and to military and right-wing groups such as the ultranationalist, anti-Semitic and homoerotic Freikorps — the fiercely anticommunist terrorist squads that sprang up, especially in eastern Germany, in response to the political chaos of the early Weimar Republic. Eckart was a fiercely anti-Semitic journalist and playwright who taught Hitler political tactics and introduced him to Munich and Berlin society, as well as to other wealthy people throughout the country.

Most of the top ranking SS from the very beginning were also homosexual. Ernst Roehm, whom Hitler was a protégé, created the Nazi party on the idea of being proud so called ultra-masculine, male supremacist pedophiles. When you cast a net with that kind of bait what kind of fish do you think you are going to catch? In fact, they actually thought because of their homosexuality they were ultra-masculine because they didn't need women for anything, including sex and companionship. The idea was that because they had no personal need for women, homosexual men were superior to even heterosexual men. They believed that homosexual men were the foundation of all nation-states and represented the elite strata of human society. Naturally, to support their argument they drew much of their pride from the accomplishments of the Greeks, quite possibly the gayest civilization ever to walk to earth.

Heinrich Himmler even complained "Does it not constitute a danger to the Nazi movement if it can be said that Nazi leaders are chosen for sexual reasons?" Apparently Himmler was not complaining so much about all the rampant faggotry around him but just being a homosexual seemed to be the only qualifying factor as to who got promoted in the SS. You might ask, as I did, "Where the @ # ! * did all of these homosexuals come from?" I think that is a fair question. What I found out was that in the 1920s and 30s, homosexuality was known as "the German vice" across Europe because they had so many of them. Here is a fact you can run home and tell your friends -- Germany was actually the birthplace of the gay rights movement. No lie. But back to the Nazi. Ernst Roehm, as the head of 2,500,000 Storm Troops reportedly had units of several hundred thousand Storm Troopers, where almost all the men, without exception, were homosexuals. In fact, the favorite meeting place where some of the earliest formative meetings of the Nazi Party had been held was a "gay" bar in Munich called the Bratwurstglockl where Ernst Roehm kept a table reserved for himself. At the Bratwurstglockl, Roehm and associates - Edmund Heines, Karl Ernst, Ernst's partner Captain Rohrbein, Captain Petersdorf, Count Ernst Helldorf and the rest - would meet to plan and strategize. These were the men who orchestrated the Nazi campaign of intimidation and terror. All of them were homosexuals.

So how do we know Hitler was gay? Besides the fact that Hitler is listed as a homosexual in Viennese police records, that he had been a male prostitute in Vienna from 1907 to 1912, beside the fact that Eva Braun, his "mistress" wrote that Hitler believed "physical contact with me would be to him a contamination of the mission," besides these ... Well, how do you ever really know someone is gay unless you catch them hanging out with Kevin Spacey? So why did Hitler come down so hard on homosexuals, locking many in jail and even tossing some of them in ovens while he was incinerating Jews? Historians say that he didn't. I mean, yeah, he did publicly clamp down on homosexuals but it wasn't practiced across the board, historians say it was just an excuse to go after people who he saw as enemies of the Nazi Party. And do yourself a favor and don't let the friendly neighborhood Aryan down the street tell you since Hitler, had sex with at least 4 women, one of them being his own niece, Hitler wasn't gay. For all we know Hitler only had sex with 4 women. Hitler loved to be pissed and * & ^ % on, and used the get off beating the darn out of his women which may have been the reason that all 4 of the women that he had sex with tried to kill themselves, with two of them succeeding. Think of it like this -- if you were to pick up a flyer off the street about an organization built on the belief in the innate superiority of a cocksucker, if when you walk into the room where this meeting is being held and you see a room full of dudes sitting around and then say to yourself "this must be the place" ... are you not gay?
Title: Re:
Post by: Verrocchio on November 12, 2008, 03:51:39 PM

By definition, projection dominates the psychology of the paranoid person. Depending on the patinet's ego strength and degree of stress, it may be a psychotic, borderline, or neurotic level of projection. In a frankly psychotic person, upsetting parts of self are projected and fully believed to be "out there," no matter how crazy the projections may seem to others. The paranoid schizophrenic who believes that homosexual Bulgarian agents have poisoned his water is projecting his aggression, his wish for same-sex closeness, his ethnocentrism, and his fantasies of power. He does not find ways of making his beliefs fit with conventional notions of reality; he may be quite convinced that he is the only one in the world who sees the threat. Because reality testing is by definition not lost in people at a borderline level of personality organization, paranoid patients in the borderline range project in such a way that those on whom disowned attitudes are projected are subtly provoked to feel those attitudes. This is projective identification: The person tries to get rid of certain feelings, yet retains empathy with them and needs to reassure the self that they are realistic. The borderline paranoid person works to make his or her projections "fit" the projective target. Thus the woman who disowns her hatred and envy announces to her therapist in an antagonistic manner that she can tell that the therapist is jealous of her accomplishments; interpretations given in a sympathetic spirit are reinterpreted by the client as evidence of envy-driven wishes to undermine and control, and soon the therapist, worn down by being steadily misunderstood, is hating the patient and envying her freedom to vent her spleen. In paranoid people at the neurotic level, internal issues are projected in a potentially ego-alien way. That is, the patient projects yet has some observing part of the self that eventually will be capable, in the context of a reliable relationship, of acknowledging the externalized contents of the mind as projection.

The need of the paranoid person to handle upsetting feelings projectively entails the use of an unusual degree of denial and its close relative, reaction formation. All human beings project; indeed, the universal disposition toward projection is the basis for transference, the process that makes analytic therapy possible. But paranoid people do it in the context of such a great need to disavow upsetting attitudes that it feels like a whole different process from projective operations in which denial is not so integral. 


Speaking of defence mechanism, I would mention these other ones, as being particularly interesting:

Rationalization is the process of constructing a logical justification for a belief/decision/action/lack thereof that was originally arrived at through a different mental process. It is a defence mechanism in which unacceptable behaviors or feelings are explained in a rational or logical manner; this avoids the true explanation of the behavior or feeling in question. This process can be in a range from fully conscious (e.g. to present an external defense against ridicule from others) to mostly subconscious (e.g. to create a block against internal feelings of guilt). Rationalization is one of the defense mechanisms proposed by Sigmund Freud, which were later developed further by his daughter Anna Freud.

Intellectualization is a defense mechanism where reasoning is used to block confrontation with an unconscious conflict and its associated emotional stress. It involves removing one's self, emotionally, from a stressful event. Intellectualization is often accomplished through rationalization; rather than accepting reality, one may explain it away to remove one's self. Intellectualization is one of Freud's original defense mechanisms. Freud believed that memories have both conscious and unconscious aspects, and that intellectualization allows for the conscious analysis of an event in a way that does not provoke anxiety. Suppose George has been brought up by a strict father, and he feels hurt and angry as a result. Although George may have deep feelings of hatred towards his father, when he talks about his childhood, George may say: "Yes, my father was a rather firm person, I suppose I do feel some antipathy towards him even now." George intellectualizes; he chooses rational and emotionally cool words to describe experiences which are usually emotional and very painful. Intellectualization is a form of Isolation, according to which you remain aware of the descriptive details of an event but lose connection with the feelings about the event itself; for example, describing a murder with graphic details with no emotional response.

Reaction Formation is converting unconscious wishes or impulses that are perceived to be dangerous into their opposites; behavior that is completely the opposite of what one really wants or feels; taking the opposite belief because the true belief causes anxiety. This defence can work effectively for coping in the short term, but will eventually break down.

Displacement shifts sexual/aggressive impulses to a more acceptable or less threatening target; redirecting emotion to a safer outlet; separation of emotion from its real object and redirection of the intense emotion toward someone or something that is less offensive or threatening in order to avoid dealing directly with what is frightening or threatening. For example, a mother may yell at her child because she is angry with her husband.

Repression is the process of pulling thoughts into the unconscious and preventing painful or dangerous thoughts from entering consciousness; seemingly unexplainable naivety, memory lapse or lack of awareness of one's own situation and condition; the emotion is conscious, but the idea behind it is absent.

Regression When insecure, fearful of rejection, or faced with a challenge that stimulates unconscious guilt or fear, people may become helpless and childlike in an attempt to fend off trouble by disarming potential rejecters and abusers. Anna Freud called this defense mechanism regression, suggesting that people act out behaviors from the stage of psychosexual development in which they are fixated. For example, an individual fixated at an earlier developmental stage might cry or sulk upon hearing unpleasant news. Behaviors associated with regression can vary greatly depending upon which stage the person is fixated at: an individual fixated at the oral stage might begin eating or smoking excessively, or might become very verbally aggressive. A fixation at the anal stage might result in excessive tidiness or messiness.

Dissociation. Examples include the phenomenon that 19th-century French psychiatrists labeled la belle indifférence, a kind of strange minimization of the gravity of a situation or symptom; fausse reconnaissance, the conviction of remembering something that did not happen; pseudologia fantastica, the tendency to tell outrageous untruths while seeming, at least during the telling, to believe them; fugue states; body memories of traumatic events not recalled cognitively, etc.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: CoQ10 on November 13, 2008, 02:30:42 PM

Displacement shifts sexual/aggressive impulses to a more acceptable or less threatening target; redirecting emotion to a safer outlet; separation of emotion from its real object and redirection of the intense emotion toward someone or something that is less offensive or threatening in order to avoid dealing directly with what is frightening or threatening. For example, a mother may yell at her child because she is angry with her husband.


(http://img380.imageshack.us/img380/8159/260x195sinsofthemotherlke7.jpg)
http://www.lmn.tv/movies/details.php?id=MOVE+1652

Kevin Coe, born Frederick Harlan Coe on Feb. 2, 1947, is a convicted rapist from Spokane, Washington, often referred to in the news media as the "South Hill Rapist". He has been in custody since conviction in 1981. Starting on September 15, 2008 the State of Washington held a "civil commitment" trial before a jury wherein it argued that he should be declared a sexually violent predator and confined indefinitely; jury selection began that day, and testimony commenced September 29. As of May, 2008, he is still a suspect in dozens of rapes. His notoriety is due to much more than the fact of his statuses as a suspect and convict. The number of victims he has been suspected of having raped is unusually large; his convictions received an unusual amount of attention from appeals courts; his mother was convicted for hiring a hit man against her son's judge and prosecutor after the initial convictions; and the bizarre relationship between Coe and his mother became the subject of a nonfiction book by the widely read writer on crime, Jack Olsen. "Sins of the Mother" is the title of the movie depicting the story.

(http://img523.imageshack.us/img523/8600/pr02zl8.jpg)

(http://img360.imageshack.us/img360/3430/pr13os5.jpg)
Dale Midkiff plays the role of Kevin Coe

In 1981 Coe, a radio announcer by profession, gained regional renown when he was arrested as the suspect in up to 43 rapes which had been perpetrated in Spokane between 1978 and 1981. Many of the rapes involved an extreme level of physical injury to the victims, and the police suspected them to be the work of a single offender, who came to be dubbed the "South Hill rapist". It was suggested that Kevin was mad at his mother for treating him like dirt, and that he was displacing his anger towards her onto his victims, the women he raped and hurt.
Title: The Nuclear Family vs. The Band
Post by: random house on November 16, 2008, 01:54:03 PM

So basically the nuclear family, as the base unit of consensus society, with its attendant "oedipal miseries," a response to the "agricultural revolution" with its imposed scarcity and its imposed hierarchy has to be abolished? I've read some authors advocate the more primal and more radical model -- the band. The typical hunter/gatherer nomadic or semi-nomadic band consists of about 50 people. Within larger tribal societies the band-structure is fulfilled by clans within the tribe, or by sodalities such as initiatic or secret societies, hunt or war societies, gender societies, "children's republics," and so on. If the nuclear family is produced by scarcity (and results in miserliness), the band is produced by abundance -- and results in prodigality. The family is closed, by genetics, by the male's possession of women and children, by the hierarchic totality of agricultural/industrial society. The band is open -- not to everyone, of course, but to the affinity group, the initiates sworn to a bond of love. The band is not part of a larger hierarchy, but rather part of a horizontal pattern of custom, extended kinship, contract and alliance, spiritual affinities, etc.


And that's the central issue, I think: domination, authoritarianism.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: t h e r m o s on November 17, 2008, 11:43:12 AM

Here it is a placenta delivery (well, it features the baby's delivery as well, but right after that part you can see the placenta being taken out)

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/yt-yd8qBexzgF4/cesarean_section_part2


My cousin gave birth to her child by means of a caesarean section -- the baby was in a podalic presentation/sitting (3-4% of all deliveries with one baby). And with the internal podalic version a lost art today, her only option was the caesarean.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: pome on November 17, 2008, 05:13:40 PM

My cousin gave birth to her child by means of a caesarean section -- the baby was in a podalic presentation/sitting (3-4% of all deliveries with one baby). And with the internal podalic version a lost art today, her only option was the caesarean.


thermos, I've heard all podalic cases have to undergo the caesarean - all, except for it, the podalic treated with version, which as you say, is something rare nowadays.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: inspired minds on November 19, 2008, 12:37:44 PM

Here it is a placenta delivery (well, it features the baby's delivery as well, but right after that part you can see the placenta being taken out)

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/yt-yd8qBexzgF4/cesarean_section_part2


My cousin gave birth to her child by means of a caesarean section -- the baby was in a podalic presentation/sitting (3-4% of all deliveries with one baby). And with the internal podalic version a lost art today, her only option was the caesarean.


There is a great risk of uterine rupture associated with internal podalic version -- that is the reason why it's not attempted at all. There is a strong mechanical force in taking the fetus and basically forcing it to do a summersault within the uterine cavity. These are not little things that you just kind of push gently, and it just turns. It doesn't work that way. You are using a great deal of force in turning it upside-down that does trauma to the uterine cavity and could disrupt the placenta and cause bleeding. And rarely things like amniotic fluid embolus. Those are not common things that could happen, but rarely they could. And, in fact, in Williams’ textbook of obstetrics, which is one of the most premiere, respected obstetrical textbooks for teaching medical students, it specifically says that there are very few, if any, indications to do internal podalic version other than the second twin. And in various editions he actually says it is potentially harmful. He says that it is the most common cause of traumatic uterine rupture.
And if you do separate the placenta, all the blood supply to the uterus goes to the surface of the placenta and stops there. If the placenta starts to separate, you, in fact, have an abruption of a placenta, and there would be internal hemorrhage.

Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: good cop bad cop on November 19, 2008, 07:24:44 PM

Here it is a placenta delivery (well, it features the baby's delivery as well, but right after that part you can see the placenta being taken out)

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/yt-yd8qBexzgF4/cesarean_section_part2


My cousin gave birth to her child by means of a caesarean section -- the baby was in a podalic presentation/sitting (3-4% of all deliveries with one baby). And with the internal podalic version a lost art today, her only option was the caesarean.


There is a great risk of uterine rupture associated with internal podalic version -- that is the reason why it's not attempted at all. There is a strong mechanical force in taking the fetus and basically forcing it to do a summersault within the uterine cavity. These are not little things that you just kind of push gently, and it just turns. It doesn't work that way. You are using a great deal of force in turning it upside-down that does trauma to the uterine cavity and could disrupt the placenta and cause bleeding. And rarely things like amniotic fluid embolus. Those are not common things that could happen, but rarely they could. And, in fact, in Williams’ textbook of obstetrics, which is one of the most premiere, respected obstetrical textbooks for teaching medical students, it specifically says that there are very few, if any, indications to do internal podalic version other than the second twin. And in various editions he actually says it is potentially harmful. He says that it is the most common cause of traumatic uterine rupture. And if you do separate the placenta, all the blood supply to the uterus goes to the surface of the placenta and stops there. If the placenta starts to separate, you, in fact, have an abruption of a placenta, and there would be internal hemorrhage.


Interesting, inspired minds, I have also a feeling I've read the exact same thing some place..
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: fromadistance on November 20, 2008, 06:13:07 PM

[...] Popular culture serves up rebellion to the masses in such a way that when and if they finally act out against the state that makes them miserable their very act of rebellion finally supports that state [...]


Could you expand a bit?
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: cAMP on November 21, 2008, 01:36:55 PM

[...] Popular culture serves up rebellion to the masses in such a way that when and if they finally act out against the state that makes them miserable their very act of rebellion finally supports that state [...]


Could you expand a bit?


I tend to believe the OP is saying that the oppressed, instead of striving for liberation, tend themselves to become oppressors, or "sub-oppressors." The very structure of their thought has been conditioned by the contradictions of the concrete, existential situation by which they were shaped. Their ideal is to be men; but for them, to be men is to be oppressors. This is their model of humanity. This phenomenon derives from the fact that the oppressed, at a certain moment of their existential experience, adopt an attitude of "adhesion" to the oppressor. Under these circumstances they cannot "consider" him sufficiently clearly to objectivize him -- to discover him "outside" themselves. This does not necessarily mean that the oppressed are unaware that they are downtrodden. But their perception of themselves as oppressed is impaired by their submersion in the reality of oppression. At this level, their perception of themselves as opposites of the oppressor does not yet signify engagement un a struggle to overcome the contradiction; the one pole aspires not to liberation, but to identification with its opposite pole.
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: M i r i a m on November 21, 2008, 02:30:10 PM

While the practice of law is about relationships, Floyd explains, legal education devalues relationships and other emotional matters. "It is not just that we fail to teach students about relationship skills," she says. "Legal education actually diminishes or eliminates the ability to form and sustain relationships that students possess when they begin law school."


So true -- law school basically destroys your ability to relate to other people, emotionally and sexually speaking. For instance, since I started law school in August of this year I have not dated a single guy! I am aware that there are people out there who do just fine not having sex for months in a raw, but I'm just not one of them! Before starting law school I would have at least 3 sexual encounters a week; exciting, 5-hour "ordeals," during which I would push that full hunk against the wall, shove my leg in between his thighs and have him beg me to @ # ! * him - which did not happen up until he'd lick every inch of my body! Well, you get the point, I was once this hot chick who'd drive the muscle guy nuts by calling him a b i t c h of a bear so that he'd get aggressive enough - and now all I see left of that is just some "wild" phantasy to do that hot guy with the confident walk, but no real juice to it. Sometimes I think I just don't have the time, or is it maybe that I'm supposed to consider the sex thing not that worthwhile? Can somebody relate? I am particulary interested in women's opinions and experiences. I apologize if I got too graphic, but hey, that's what this forum is for, after all - we can be serious at school :) 
Title: Re: INSTITUTIONAL DENIAL ABOUT THE DARK SIDE OF LAW SCHOOL
Post by: 1L2011 on November 21, 2008, 04:03:34 PM
I now find myself now wandering i