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Dr. Bruce Levine

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2019-01-13 - Original post - cached version

At the time, toward the end of 2018, it didn’t seem completely irrational to submit an op-ed to the New York Times. I had felt compelled to respond to a lengthy NYT op-ed “Can We Stop Suicides?” authored by Moises Velasquez-Manoff, who had offered what I considered to be a fairly insane solution...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2019-01-13 - Original post - cached version

At the time, toward the end of 2018, it didn’t seem completely irrational to submit an op-ed to the New York Times. I had felt compelled to respond to a lengthy NYT op-ed “Can We Stop Suicides?” authored by Moises Velasquez-Manoff, who had offered what I considered to be a fairly insane solution...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2019-01-10 - Original post - cached version

The 1919 misfortune of Woodrow Wilson and good fortune of Scott Nearing are nowhere near enough evidence for the existence of God or for even karma, but these 1919 events do provide some therapy for me—a reminder that life, occasionally, is not completely unjust.

In 1919, Wilson—who...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2019-01-10 - Original post - cached version

The 1919 misfortune of Woodrow Wilson and good fortune of Scott Nearing are nowhere near enough evidence for the existence of God or for even karma, but these 1919 events do provide some therapy for me—a reminder that life, occasionally, is not completely unjust.

In 1919, Wilson—who...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2019-01-09 - Original post - cached version

Bruce Levine argues in his newest book, Resisting Illegitimate Authority: A Thinking Person’s Guide to Being an Anti-Authoritarian for the essential value of anti-authoritarians in a democracy, and questions their treatment by the medical establishment. He also dishes a few pro-tips on how...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-12-14 - Original post - cached version

The drumbeat for ketamine as a way to halt the rising suicide rate is upon us, as the New York Times has now joined the chorus. This is encouraging news unless of course you recall a couple of things: how recent enthusiasm from the medical-industrial complex for increased opioid use for pain...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-12-14 - Original post - cached version

The drumbeat for ketamine as a way to halt the rising suicide rate is upon us, as the New York Times has now joined the chorus. This is encouraging news unless of course you recall a couple of things: how recent enthusiasm from the medical-industrial complex for increased opioid use for pain...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-11-30 - Original post - cached version
In this excerpt from Resisting Illegitimate Authority, Bruce E. Levine surveys the means by which conventional schooling punishes anti-authoritarian impulses and primes children for conformity.
Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-11-23 - Original post - cached version

“The person who claims the legitimacy of the authority always bears the burden of justifying it. And if they can’t justify it, it’s illegitimate and should be dismantled. To tell you the truth, I don’t really understand anarchism as being much more than that.”—Noam Chomsky

...
Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-11-23 - Original post - cached version

“The person who claims the legitimacy of the authority always bears the burden of justifying it. And if they can’t justify it, it’s illegitimate and should be dismantled. To tell you the truth, I don’t really understand anarchism as being much more than that.”—Noam Chomsky.

On December 7...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-10-27 - Original post - cached version

For several years, I’ve been thinking about writing Resisting Illegitimate Authority: A Thinking Person’s Guide to Being an Anti-Authoritarian―Strategies, Tools, and Models, a book about anti-authoritarians and for them. Authoritarian is routinely defined as “favoring blind submission to...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-10-25 - Original post - cached version

Psychologist Stanley Milgram (1933–1984) was deeply affected by Nazi atrocities, so when his early 1960s research on Americans revealed an unexpectedly high rate of obedience to authority commanding subjects to commit cruel actions, this very much troubled him. Milgram’s studies revealed other...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-10-25 - Original post - cached version

Psychologist Stanley Milgram (1933–1984) was deeply affected by Nazi atrocities, so when his early 1960s research on Americans revealed an unexpectedly high rate of obedience to authority commanding subjects to commit cruel actions, this very much troubled him. Milgram’s studies revealed other...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-10-13 - Original post - cached version

Unlike the standard Michael Moore film that is replete with cheap shots and lurid tangents aimed at hooking and pleasing his choir, Moore cuts back on candy for his Trump-hating fans in Fahrenheit 11/9 and instead provides them with much-needed political truths.

The substance of...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-10-13 - Original post - cached version

The substance of Fahrenheit 11/9 challenges his fans to go beyond their easy contempt for the obnoxious Trump. Moore pushes his audience to consider how the corporatist blue team — an authoritarian Democratic National Party, a clueless self-serving Hillary Clinton, a slickly betraying Barack...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-10-11 - Original post - cached version

I have long studied legitimate and illegitimate authorities, which exist in all walks of life. Illegitimate authorities include dishonest or exploitative ones but also include those which are incompetent. The fact that 1.6 million fans attended Reds games in 2018 compared to nearly 2.5 million...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-10-05 - Original post - cached version

The following excerpt is from the subchapter “Mutual Aid” and which Yes! has titled “Why Alcoholics Can’t Be Forced to Stop Drinking.”

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-09-19 - Original post - cached version

 

Bernie Sanders, in his thirties, wrote and directed the documentary Eugene V. Debs: Trade Unionist, Socialist, Revolutionary (1979), and a picture of Debs is on Sanders’s office wall. But the arc of Sanders’s polit­­ical career has moved in the opposite direction from the arc of his...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-09-19 - Original post - cached version

Bernie Sanders, in his thirties, wrote and directed the documentary Eugene V. Debs: Trade Unionist, Socialist, Revolutionary (1979), and a picture of Debs is on Sanders’s office wall. But the arc of Sanders’s polit­­ical career has moved in the opposite direction from the arc of his hero. Debs...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-08-16 - Original post - cached version

“Don’t be stupid, be a smarty, come and join the Nazi Party” is an intentionally obnoxious line from the hilarious “Springtime for Hitler” in Mel Brook’s The Producers. Not hilarious is the reality that doctors in Nazi Germany were “smarties” in Brook’s sardonic sense, as they joined the Nazi SS...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-08-16 - Original post - cached version

“Don’t be stupid, be a smarty, come and join the Nazi Party” is an intentionally obnoxious line from the hilarious “Springtime for Hitler” in Mel Brook’s The Producers. Not hilarious is the reality that doctors in Nazi Germany were “smarties” in Brook’s sardonic sense, as they joined the Nazi SS...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-07-27 - Original post - cached version

Political, cultural, and financial forces have made many mental health professionals so unaware about the reality of trauma and adversity that they often harm instead of help. In her recently published book Trauma and Madness in Mental Health Services (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018), clinical...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-07-19 - Original post - cached version
A Thinking Person’s Guide to Being an Anti-Authoritarian―Strategies, Tools, and Models

The capacity to comply with abusive authority is humanity’s “fatal flaw.” Fortunately, there are anti-authoritarians—people comfortable questioning the legitimacy of authority and resisting its illegitimate...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-07-18 - Original post - cached version

Despite increased spending on mental health treatment, mental illness disability and suicide rates have skyrocketed. “Perhaps more disturbingly,” notes clinical psychologist Noël Hunter, “recent evidence has demonstrated that as contact with psychiatric intervention increases, so too does...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-07-18 - Original post - cached version

Despite increased spending on mental health treatment, mental illness disability and suicide rates have skyrocketed. “Perhaps more disturbingly,” notes clinical psychologist Noël Hunter, “recent evidence has demonstrated that as contact with psychiatric intervention increases, so too does...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-06-14 - Original post - cached version

“8 Reasons Young Americans Don’t Fight Back: How the US Crushed Youth Resistance” was originally published in 2011, then republished on several Internet sites, and has become one of my most viewed articles. The eight reasons include: student-loan debt; various pacifying effects of standard...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-06-14 - Original post - cached version

“8 Reasons Young Americans Don’t Fight Back: How the US Crushed Youth Resistance” was originally published in 2011, then republished on several Internet sites, and has become one of my most viewed articles. The eight reasons include: student-loan debt; various pacifying effects of standard...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-05-02 - Original post - cached version

George Carlin, in his book Brain Droppings, told us that his motto had come to be: “Fuck Hope.” In his autobiography Last Words, Carlin recalled, “The election of Ronald Reagan might’ve been the beginning of my giving up on my species. Because it was absurd.”

We can only imagine how...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-05-02 - Original post - cached version

George Carlin, in his book Brain Droppings, told us that his motto had come to be: “Fuck Hope.” In his autobiography Last Words, Carlin recalled, “The election of Ronald Reagan might’ve been the beginning of my giving up on my species. Because it was absurd.”

We can only imagine how...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-03-16 - Original post - cached version

I have never spoken with a school shooter, but I’ve talked with many teenage boys and young men who—though behaviorally nonviolent themselves—emotionally connect with the anger, alienation, and hopelessness of school shooters.

Regardless of whether they received poor or excellent grades,...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-03-16 - Original post - cached version

I have never spoken with a school shooter, but I’ve talked with many teenage boys and young men who—though behaviorally nonviolent themselves—emotionally connect with the anger, alienation, and hopelessness of school shooters.

Regardless of whether they received poor or excellent grades,...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-01-26 - Original post - cached version

I am a mental health professional, a clinical psychologist, which is not quite as bad as being a psychiatrist but still nothing to brag about. Hypocrisy in U.S. mental health professional policy abounds damn near as much as in U.S. foreign policy. Among psychiatrists and psychologists, there is...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2018-01-26 - Original post - cached version

I am a mental health professional, a clinical psychologist, which is not quite as bad as being a psychiatrist but still nothing to brag about. Hypocrisy in U.S. mental health professional policy abounds damn near as much as in U.S. foreign policy. Among psychiatrists and psychologists, there is...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-12-22 - Original post - cached version

Many Americans are unaware that electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)—more commonly known as electroshock—continues to be widely utilized by U.S. psychiatry. In the current issue of the journal Ethical Human Psychology and Psychiatry, psychologist John Read and co-author Chelsea Arnold note, “The...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-12-22 - Original post - cached version

Many Americans are unaware that electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)—more commonly known as electroshock—continues to be widely utilized by U.S. psychiatry. In the current issue of the journal Ethical Human Psychology and Psychiatry, psychologist John Read and co-author Chelsea Arnold note, “The...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-07-04 - Original post - cached version

Perhaps something useful can be accomplished as a consequence of the transparently repulsive Trump: rousing Americans to reconsider honoring US presidents with Presidents’ Day, and replacing it with a holiday that recognizes a more respectable group of people.

Trump’s misogyny has long...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-07-04 - Original post - cached version

Perhaps something useful can be accomplished as a consequence of the transparently repulsive Trump: rousing Americans to reconsider honoring US presidents with Presidents’ Day, and replacing it with a holiday that recognizes a more respectable group of people.

Trump’s misogyny has long...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-05-19 - Original post - cached version

Occupy Wall Street insider Jonathan Smucker’s recently published Hegemony How-To: A Roadmap for Radicals (AK Press, 2017) is the post-Occupy guide for how to be smarter about politics. Smucker, a long-time grassroots organizer, does not dismiss what Occupy did right but is honest about its...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-05-19 - Original post - cached version

Occupy Wall Street insider Jonathan Smucker’s recently published Hegemony How-To: A Roadmap for Radicals (AK Press, 2017) is the post-Occupy guide for how to be smarter about politics. Smucker, a long-time grassroots organizer, does not dismiss what Occupy did right but is honest about its...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-04-18 - Original post - cached version

Suicide rates in the US have surged to a 30-year high at the same time that US antidepressant use has skyrocketed. While correlation is not the same as causation, this concurrence naturally raises questions from people comfortable challenging authorities—including mental health authorities. Does...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-04-18 - Original post - cached version

Suicide rates in the US have surged to a 30-year high at the same time that US antidepressant use has skyrocketed. While correlation is not the same as causation, this concurrence naturally raises questions from people comfortable challenging authorities—including mental health authorities. Does...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-03-27 - Original post - cached version

The issue of control is front and center of “CRAZY,” Lise Zumwalt’s new documentary.  “I’ve always been interested in stories where there is a tension between social policy and law and individual rights—and mental illness is a great lens to look at that tension,” says Zumwalt, who has produced,...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-03-27 - Original post - cached version

The issue of control is front and center of “CRAZY,” Lise Zumwalt’s new documentary.  “I’ve always been interested in stories where there is a tension between social policy and law and individual rights—and mental illness is a great lens to look at that tension,” says Zumwalt, who has produced,...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-03-14 - Original post - cached version

It should not be surprising that cynicism is increasingly the U.S. national pastime, as we regularly observe top-dog bankers avoiding criminal prosecution for crimes they preside over, and we see prominent professionals—including psychiatrists—gaining career advancement after disgraceful actions...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-03-14 - Original post - cached version

It should not be surprising that cynicism is increasingly the U.S. national pastime, as we regularly observe top-dog bankers avoiding criminal prosecution for crimes they preside over, and we see prominent professionals—including psychiatrists—gaining career advancement after disgraceful actions...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-02-20 - Original post - cached version

“Humiliation porn” is much about transforming the shame and pain of victimization and powerlessness into some kind of sexual pleasure. If mainstream institutions ignore a large number of people who feel powerless, victimized and angry, that’s easy pickings for a demagogue, who knows that a...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-02-20 - Original post - cached version

“Humiliation porn” is much about transforming the shame and pain of victimization and powerlessness into some kind of sexual pleasure. If mainstream institutions ignore a large number of people who feel powerless, victimized and angry, that’s easy pickings for a demagogue, who knows that a...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-02-01 - Original post - cached version

In any society that prioritizes economic efficiency, productivity and order above life and all of life’s varieties, people experiencing altered and extreme emotional states will be seen as defective and as burdens—monkey wrenches that disturb the societal assembly line.

To be clear,...

Dr. Bruce Levine - 2017-02-01 - Original post - cached version

In any society that prioritizes economic efficiency, productivity and order above life and all of life’s varieties, people experiencing altered and extreme emotional states will be seen as defective and as burdens—monkey wrenches that disturb the societal assembly line.

To be clear,...

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