Studies in MEdical Sadism - 7: Professor
Simon Wessely's many mental issues
He told the court martial: "On the sergeant-major's return I reported
to him and said I was sick and could not stand it. He then said, "You
are a f****** coward and you will go to the trenches. I give f*** all
for my life and I give f*** all for yours and I'll get
you f****** well shot'."
Two men were ordered to conduct Farr to the front. "They commenced to
shove me. I told them not to as I was sick enough as it was. The
sergeant-major then grabbed my rifle and said, " 'I'll blow your
f****** brains out if you don't go'. I then called out for an officer
but there were none there." - On private Farr WWI
we believe absurdities,
we shall commit atrocities."
This continues yesterday's Nederlog, in the series
in MEdical Sadism, for the instruction of many.
And let me start with stating - before you think this is just about ME or just
about or for patients with ME:
- This shows professor Simon Wessely is a dangerous madman (or else I
am one: I invite him to the Court in Strasbourg).
- This shows the power of the internet: Virtually never before was the
outline of a general case for a position like the previous one produced
- This shows how dangerous the current English institutions are for
- This shows professor Simon Wessely is not only a dangerous madman,
but that he is an obvious sadist with many mental issues.
- It is a disgrace that the General Medical Council (GMC)($) doesn't take
the licence to pracrice from a totally obvious nutcase like him - after
all, there is no other type of medical specialist with more insanity,
more suicides, more proven incompetence, fraudulence, misrepresentation
and lies than psychiatric specialists.
- The writer of this is Dutch, four years older than Simon the Sick
Sadistic Shrink a.k.a. Simon the SS-man, is a psychologist and a
philosopher, and wants this man removed from his medical jobs and his
professorates, and wants him in court for helping to cause great
suffering and deaths in many patients with several illnesses, varying
from ME/CFS via PTSD in Gulf-War veterans and alumnium-poisoning in
English civilans, all of which Simon the sick SS-Shrink - the modern Dr.
MEngele of ME/CFS - reduces to "dysfunctional beliefs" by sufferers that
do not correspond to any disease but are caused by the patient's
stupidity ("dysfunctional beliefs"), weaknes, laziness, malingering and
wimpiness, or their refusal to think and feel like ordinary healthy men
and women, when Simon the Sadistich Shrink or his cronies and co-workers
order them to act, and work, and believe and live like healthy people do.
Now..to start the story: Yesterday I
wrote on the
about ME on
to which the last is a link on the forums.
This led to some researching by members of the forum; it led to
ME: Update, MEdical sadism and some links,
that led to more links about professor Simon Wessely's very strange ways
and views; and it led today to this, after more clear evidence that the man is
a mad psychiatrist, with some very clear issues relating to hurting
defenseless people and protecting those who do hurt defenseless people.
The whole thread -
Wessely psychologises Chemical warfare - is quite amazing and
strongly reminiscent in a number of ways of the Dutch psychiatric sadist
Bastiaans, about whom there is more
under the last link in Dutch - and don't fear, persons with ME:
professor Bastiaans is safely dead, and
didn't have anything to do with ME, that I know at least, but he too was a
mad psychiatric rotter with a clear wish to hurt defenseless persons, in
his case Dutch ex-concentration-camp inmates with PTSD.
What follows is a selection from
Wessely psychologises Chemical warfare to help understand the
mental issues of professor Simon Wessely.
In the top of the selections I have given the
number in the thread, the writer and the date. Almost nothing is changed (I
removed one sentence that referred to a post I did not include, and undid
some typos), and inserted some remarks inbetween.
The boxes are quotations (with boxes that
contain quotations, in purple); the text outside the boxes is of today and
by me and introduces (before) or comments (after) boxed texts.
Here is the beginning, with which I had nothing whatsoever to do. The
writer is Orla Ni Chomhrai, an extremely intelligent and brave
Irish woman who, like everybody else writing in the following text, has
been and is ill since many years with ME.
What struck her is a very strong similarity in Wessely's lies and
misrespresentation as regards ME/CFS and as regards Gulf War veterans -
and note that in what follows the boxes in greyish purple contain quotes:
- Orla - 080410
Wessely psychologises Chemical
I couldn't keep this one to
myself when I saw it. Wessely has done some work for the UK
military and was their main (or certainly one of their main)
Gulf War Illness deniers.
This lovely little paper is interesting, and has some
correlations with the CBT School rubbish on ME/CFS. It is
basically a political paper, which becomes more obvious towards
the end when he makes a reference to the continuing ill health
of Gulf war veterans, which he is clearly hinting that they are
really suffering from the psychological effects of warfare, or
that they are misattributing poor health to their Gulf War
In this paper Wessely is not cited as the main writer, though
his finger prints and ideology are all over it.
Contributors: EJ undertook the research, analysis of the data,
and wrote the paper. IP collected the data. SW helped to design
the study and commented on various drafts of the paper. EJ is
Funding: Economic and Social Research Council and the
Ministry of Defence
Here are some quotes from the paper:
Enduring beliefs about effects of gassing in war:
qualitative study Edgar Jones, professor1, Ian
Palmer, professor2, Simon Wessely, professor1
1 Institute of Psychiatry and King’s Centre for Military
Health Research, Weston Education Centre, London SE5 9RJ,
2 Medical Assessment Programme, St Thomas’ Hospital,
London SE1 7EH
BMJ 2007;335:1313-1315 (22 December),
[Edit forgot to include this from the abstract:
Conclusions Chronic symptoms and work difficulties
maintained beliefs about the potency of chemical weapons.
In the period after the war, gas continued to inspire
popular revulsion and was associated with a sense of
Recent studies of troops in training or civilians
attacked by terrorists have shown that chemical weapons
have retained their capacity to frighten.
[who wouldn't be afraid of
During the first world war, fears associated with
chemical weapons were disproportionate to their killing
[It was the horrific effects
of it and not just deaths I think that concerned people. Also
these things are deadly if you inhaled enough, so it was hardly
abnormal to be worried about them]
Using records from the first world war, when chemical
weapons had become an integral part of the main
combatants’ armoury, we explored the ideas and
beliefs held by servicemen exposed to gas but not
seriously incapacitated. To focus on the
psychological effects of gassing, we excluded those who
had severe disability. It was important to identify
a population for whom corroborative evidence existed of
exposure but who could be shown through repeated
follow-up and mortality data to be essentially healthy.
[So they tried to pick people
who were exposed but deliberately left out people who were
worst affected. Talking about loading up your sample (a bit
like the way they exclude people with physical signs from CFS
diagnosis/studies), and then go on to waffle about abnormal
beliefs. And of course if you exlude the sickest it takes the
concerns of everyone else out of context and makes them look
abnormal for being worried about it.]
We excluded veterans with severe respiratory illness to
focus on those whose ideas and beliefs were not
grounded in objective pathology directly related to the
war. We included pensioners who had occasional or
mild episodes of bronchitis because these were
recovering conditions that may have been related to
other effects such as smoking, industrial pollution, or
[But these people may have had
limited/unsatisfactory medical care, so even if there were
other possible explanations for conditions they experienced,
they may not have been given them. This doesn't mean they have
Repeated follow-ups during the period between the wars
enabled us to exclude veterans who had tuberculosis,
chronic bronchitis, or emphysema associated with
[So lets try to exclude all
the really sick people as they might mess up the study]
In general, this group of veterans believed
that the effects of chemical weapons were
irreversible, potent, and debilitating. These
conceptions stood in contrast with the
objective measures of health recorded for
individuals in the sample and general
observations made by specialist physicians.
This raises the key question, why did these
veterans take such a pessimistic view of their
[But they excluded the sickest
so the results were a forgone conclusion. Also in some cases
the effects of these weapons would be permanent, so it was not
irrational or illogical to be concerned about it]
During the war itself, gas was one of the
most feared weapons. It inspired emotion out
of all proportion to its ability to kill or
Next, Orla deals with Wessely's texts:
#2 - Orla - 080410
[He really has a fixation on
Recent studies of US veterans exposed to the threat of
chemical weapons have shown that both symptoms and the
memory of alerts in war zones are important in
establishing and maintaining beliefs about being
[I remember reading something
that US Gulf war vets thought they had been exposed to
chemicals in some area during Gulf War 1. The military denied
it but eventualy released information that confirmed the
veterans beliefs. So one cannot rely entirely on released
military data to confirm or deny exposure.]
....We conclude from our war pension data that there
was an interaction between ex-servicemen’s symptoms and
beliefs, which began with the traumatic experience of
being gassed but was also linked to popular convictions
about its potency and systemic effects. The conviction
of having been gassed, whether accurate or not, had
long term deleterious effects on a person’s beliefs
about illness and perceptions of health and wellbeing.
Our analysis might also assist in understanding the
otherwise baffling persistence of ill health
experienced by some US and UK military personnel after
their deployment to the 1991 Gulf war.
[As far as I know the US
military now accepts at least some Gulf War vets have physical
health problems relating to the war, but the last I heard the
UK military was sticking to its denial, with Simon Wessely
being one of their chief denialists. I don't know if anything
has changed since then as I have not been following it.
But this whole article is totally doing the thing Wessely and
co do so well, implying that symptoms are either in people's
heads, or that the silly patients don't understand where their
health problems are coming from]
There is a box with this information at the end of the article:
What is already known about this topic
Chemical weapons exercise considerable psychological
effects beyond their capacity to kill and wound
Those exposed to chemical weapons, or even the threat
of them, often experience chronic adverse health
What this study adds
The systemic nature of chemical weapons plays a crucial
part in establishing ideas about their potency and long
The powerful emotions attached to the exposure itself
inspire strong beliefs that frame interpretations of
subsequent ill health
Next, some poetry, by a very brave man who was killed just before the
end of WWI:
#3 - Orla - 080410
I kept thinking of this poem as I
was reading that article, written by someone who was in the
war-zone during World War 1, and who saw the effects first
hand. This is a bit graphic/disturbing if you haven't seen it
before, so if sensitive maybe skip it (it is about someone
getting gased in WW1). I thought it was useful to be reminded
of what it was really like, as it is easy to lose site of
reality when reading Wessely stuff.
"Dulce et Decorum Est "
by Wilfred Owen (1893-1918)
Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.
Gas! GAS! Quick, boys! -- An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime . . .
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under I green sea, I saw him drowning.
In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.
If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues, --
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.
Koan, an American woman with a gift for writing gives a good
|#4 - Koan - 080410
It's hard to credit such blatant madness. That's how they get away
Dr. Yes is a very learned American who is very ill with ME, and has
lost almost everything besides his health, because of the very bad
situation of the US Health Care and the lies that have been spread about
ME/CFS by Wessely and co (the American Wessely is called Reeves), who
deny ME is a real disease and insist that people who suffer from it are
not entitled to any help, so as to force them to work and live like
ordinary healthy persons:
|#5 - Dr. Yes -
Do you know if Wessely was a consultant for any military
organizations (including NATO) when this 'study' was being done?
(Don't bother searching if you don't already know; you're probably
already three-quarters insane after all this...)
I didn't think it was possible for my estimation of SW to drop any
lower, but I believe it just did.
Our analysis might also assist in understanding the
otherwise baffling persistence of ill health
experienced by some US and UK military personnel
after their deployment to the 1991 Gulf war.
What, after excluding all those
with signs of physical illness? How could an analysis of such a
group "assist in understanding" those with persistent "ill health"?
And who said all those veterans were afraid of gas (which is all
they focused on in this study)? And.. so on. This is an example of
one of the very common logical flaws in many psychological papers I
have seen... drawing inappropriate conclusions and then
generalizing them, often into inappropriate associations.
Thanks for the poem, by the way... very powerful, especially as it
is so appropriate.
Kim is an extra-ordinarily intelligent American woman - who shows why
the likes of Wessely and Reeves are so popular in circles of top
bureaucrats, health insurance CEOs, and likeminded persons: It would save
such a lot of money (that then can be used to triple their bonuses) if
War veterans are not helped medically at all, or only offered
CBT-psychotherapy so as to learn to believe the Politically Correct
beliefs that whoever believes that war may be unhealthy is mentally sick:
#6 - _Kim_ - 080410
This is actually a topic that I know a bit about. The research lab
where I had an internship at (when I got sick) was part of a group
called CounterAct that had secured a $19.2 million grant (Army) for
the development of therapeutic countermeasures to chemical
terrorism. The group I worked had the task of developing
countermeasures for the ocular damage that is caused by Sulfur
Mustard gas. Though my research focused on the cornea, other nearby
labs were working on countermeasures for the skin and lungs. From
presentations that I attended, it was clear that many years after
being gassed, servicemen continued to experience health problems,
sometimes after decades of no symptoms.
This is from a presentation that I did about the lab:
Severe injury usually heals after several months,
although permanent impairment has been documented.
One of the most disturbing facts about ocular sulfur
mustard exposure is that long after the acute
injuries appear to have healed, recurrent or delayed
symptoms, including ulceration, inflammation, and
corneal erosion may occur (Gordon et al., 2008).
In fact, some WWI veterans re-experienced symptoms
up to 40 years after their initial injuries
(Javadi et al., 2005).
And from a chapter that my mentor
wrote on the ocular effects of Sulfur Mustard (SM):
Data collected later in WWI and throughout the rest of
the 20th century indicates that, if Auld (1918) had
seen more cases, he would have concluded that permanent
injury to the eye is certainly possible. No one at
the time he was reporting his observations could have
foreseen the delayed recurrence of eye and skin
injuries, nor the downstream neoplastic consequences of
exposure to SM. The clinical effects from mustard
exposure are related to the concentration and duration
of the mustard gas vapor (Derby, 1919; Sidell et al,
1997). Since the vesicating gases persist for a long
time, they are effective in extremely low
concentrations, provided the victim remains in the
contaminated area long enough. As mentioned, severe
exposures often take many months to heal, and permanant
damage causing blindness is a possible sequela.
From: Javadi, et. al. 2005, Chronic and Delayed-Onset
Mustard Gas Keratitis.
Mustard gas was first produced by Meyer in 1886 and was
used initially as a vesicant agent for chemical warfare
in World War I by the German army. Only 15 to 20
years after its use were its late-onset, progressively
destructive effects recognized. Experience during the
Iraq–Iran war proved it to be a lethal agent.
Mustard gas has a strong irritating effect on living
tissue and induces long-lasting toxic effects.
Additionally, its destructive effects are not localized
to the site of application; remote cells and tissues
also become affected. Animal studies have revealed
individualized innate resistance to this agent. The
authors’ observations of human exposure confirm other
observations, namely that under similar circumstances,
individuals are not affected to the same extent;
some subjects exhibitincreased susceptibility.
<---- See Wessely, there is your
answer. Some people have increased susceptibility to sulfur
mustard. These veterans that you reported on do not have false
gaseous beliefs. They were injured long-term, with possible delayed
And if you haven't seen what kind of damage blistering vesicants
Here I enter, on a moment I had not read anything of the above, and
knew hardly any of it, though I had been thinking about the question what
motivates a man like Simon the SS-Shrink (Sick Sadistic Shrink):
|#8 - Maarten
Maartensz - 080410
I am just awake, and will PM Dr.Yes, Kim, Orla and Koan (and some
others, not on this thread, who PM'ed me) later about my plan on
another thread 'to roll our own' recommendations or public
reference library of what doctors and patients should know about ME
but were lied about.
As to this thread: Dr. Yes asked:
Do you know if Wessely was a consultant for any military
organizations (including NATO) when this 'study' was being
Yes, and his con game with war
veterans is the same as with ME-patients: It's neurasthenia,
PRECISELY what Wilfred Blunt, Siegfried Sassoon and many others
were told during WWI - you're a mad bad wimp if you say this war or
this gas is killing you: it's all in you sick and diseased mind -
get a grip, be A Real Man and proper Brit, and go back to
Passchendaele immediately, if you don't want to be courtmartialed
or sectioned for life. And here is the link to his offical bio
which opens thus
Professor Simon Wessely MA BM BCh MSc MD FRCP FRCPsych
Professor of Epidemiological and Liaison Psychiatry
Director, King's Centre for Military Health Research.
Vice Dean, Academic Psychiatry, Teaching and Training:
Institute of Psychiatry.
Some bits from it
His research has covered epidemiology, post
traumatic stress, psychological debriefing, chronic
fatigue syndrome, history, chronic pain, somatisation,
Gulf War illness, military health and terrorism. In the
first part of his career his main areas of research
focussed around clinical epidemiology, and with
special emphasis on unexplained symptoms and syndromes,
most particularly the chronic fatigue syndrome.
For the last ten years his research has shifted towards
various aspects of military health. Beginning with a a
series of multi disciplinary studies into Gulf War
Illness, he has also studied psychological stressors of
military life, PTSD, risk communication, risk and
benefits of military service, screening and health
surveillance within the Armed Forces, social and
psychological outcomes of ex service personnel, and
historical aspects of war and psychiatry.
Under ACTIVITIES AND INTERESTS
Advisory: Advisor in Psychiatry for British Army Medical
Services: Chair, Nato Working Group on Psychosocial
Consequences of Chem/Bio Terrorism: Risk Communication issues
for MOD, NATO and others: Science and Media Centre. Member of
the Scientific Advisory Panel on Emergency Response (SAPER)
and now the Defence Scientific Advisory Council (DSAC).
In brief: He is a real sadistic
creep, very probably quite consciously so, also in
very powerful positions in England: A mad and bad rotter, of major
proportion - a Dr. Strangelove who knows he is one, and thoroughly
enjoys it, a real griefer also. See:
He enjoys power and enjoys harming and hurting people for kicks,
for payment or because his superiors tell him so. He knows what he
is doing, for decades, which is why he choose these subjects. And
he plays the Catch 22 game with relish and on purpose: 'You must be
mad to think you're not mad' especially if a man of Simon's
eminence, a Real Psychiatrist also, tells you your complaints have
no somatic explanation whatsoever.
Anyway... that answers Dr. Yes's question. My own guess is that he
reads histories like those of Jonathan, that I quoted here
with a swollen schnozzle, for
"We never hurt each other but by error or by malice."
-- (Sir Robert Chambers + Dr. Johnson,
A Course of Lectures on the English Law, vol I)
Or as Jens BjØrneboe
said it, in the first of his three books on The History of
Bestiality in human history
"Makt (..) betyr bare én ting: adgang til aa paaf
"Power (..) means only one thing: the ability to cause
And what he is playing is the old
neurasthenia-card, as in WWI, for the benefit of the state, the
insurance-companies (he also worked for: UNUM), and the military,
to save these from criticism and having to pay ill people and ill
former soldiers, and indeed people poisoned with aluminium in their
"It's all in your head", Simon says, "and if you deny this you just
PROVE I am right" (transference and countertransference).
If I were a Catholic, I'd believe he comes from hell, is proud of
it, and just loves telling the people he burns personally
laughingly that they just imagine their pains because of their
false beliefs, general wimpiness, lack of psychiatric nous, and
that what they really suffer from is 'dysfunctional belief systems
'(1990-2010) a.k.a. 'neurasthenia' (1890-1920) a.k.a. possession by
succubi & incubi (1200-1700).
Aahh well... a real rotter.
Now I start waking up properly, and later this day (European time)
I'll PM some.
Maarten. (MSc. psychology, BA philosophy)
P.S. Something else: Do NOT underestimate this sadistic creep, not
so much because he has real intellectual nous, for he has not (e.g.
compared to those who have, like Roger Penrose) but because he has
very much power and is the very willing Doberman Pincher of his
government, and those living under English law may be sectioned by
him or his cronies.
Orla finds a surprising image (note that all have penis-symbols around
their necks while only the sitting capo di capi doesn't shield off his
|#10 - Orla - 080410
Disturbing Image Alert!
Someone e-mailed me this
picture after they saw my post.
Front row, furthest to the left, Simon Wessely
Front row, furthest to the right Edgar Jones (main author of
Prof Edgar Jones bio
Professor Edgar Jones MA DPhil PhD FRHistS DipClinPsych
Professor of the History of Medicine and Psychiatry
Programme Leader, MSc in War and Psychiatry
Visiting Fellow, Department of War Studies, King's College
Activities and Interests
Military psychiatry, Maudsley history, evolution of PTSD,
treatment of war syndromes, psychological effects of war on
Oerganix draws a very true conclusion - and indeed I think this
"classic Orwellian doublespeak" is constructed on purpose, and probably
also inspired by Orwell's books, his great essay
Politics and the English Language - and provides a personal
|#13 - Oerganix -
This is classic Orwellian
doublespeak. He turns the truth back upon itself and makes it
into a lie, and lies into "truth". His behavior is classic
doublespeak, too. Exclude all those who exemplify those you are
claiming to study, include those who will skew your "results"
to completely opposite of the truth and call it "proof".
My grandfather was gassed in WWI and continued to suffer some
of the bad affects of it all his life. He had memorized that
poem describing those effects and recited it stentorianly. In
my childhood, it seemed melodramatic, but I now understand how
absolutely horrible it was.
Basically, the lungs are liquified by chemical burning and the
victim drowns in his own liquified tissues, while in great
pain. A truly hellish invention. Only a sadist like Wessely
could call it an overreaction to be appalled and fearful of the
effects of gas.
Lisette comments - and Koan's thought in Koan's words is about the
above picture of Wesselly sucking up to his military bosses:
Look at that body language.
Unless he's farting, it's very telling.
|#15 - Lisette -
Koan, I had the same thought, except not so wonderfully succinct
I imagined him as a toady trying to get as close to wearing those
gold braids as he could for one shining moment. It gives a whole
new image of "suck up"-- I think that military general might have
suction marks on his arm for life.
Talk about a succubus.
Kim-- thanks for your info. Very interesting, indeed. Have you ever
read Senator Reigel's investigative report on GWI?
Orla-- great research and analysis. Thank you so much. In fact the
first time I encountered SW was because I was very interested in
helping out a family friend who had been in the GW 1. I have
written a long list of what happened to him over there, but it's
really too upsetting and enraging.
I have lain awake nights thinking of all that SW has to answer for.
Not just for people with M.E. and their families, but also for vets
and their families. The scope of the damage is just overwhelming.
I can imagine just where the ideas for some of the "educational"
literature for VA doctors treating GW vets came from. My family
friend would bring stuff back from his doctor visits at the VA, and
I was curious enough to look over them.
They felt so similar to what we have read in pamphlets about
ourselves. No evidence, of course, but not hard to imagine, since
SW was in charge.
One of the hallmark symptoms of Gulf War "Syndrome" is a "fixation
(that quote I remember well) on a chemical origin" for one's
symptoms. They wouldn't even go so far as to call it an illness.
How can you possibly fight this? In both M.E. and GWI, these
psychiatrists has made the belief that one's illness is of
organic/viral/chemical origin a hallmark symptom itself of the
overarching pscyhological state of distorted beliefs.
Distortion is one of the maladaptive thinking patterns outlined in
CBT theory. It's like the brain in a vat theory-- it can't be
I don't think anything that Maarten said was worded too strongly.
Min brings in mind Wessely's denial that English people who were in
fact poisoned with aluminium in their water supplies were poisoned at all
- according to Simon the Sadistic Shrink they were making it all up in a
fit of mass hysteria, so that their damages were not fit for help,
restitution or payment as an invalid:
Mithriel, a very intelligent Scots woman with ME since 1968 remembers
something else about Wessely's lovely ways:
|#17 - Mithriel -
I am sure he said that deserters in WW1 deserved to be shot when
there was talk of pardoning them.
He was proved wrong in Camelford but it doesn't seem to have slowed
him down which says something about modern society and his own
Of course, if chemical warfare isn't that bad it's just that people
are afraid of it then it's OK to use it. No wonder the military
Dr. Yes replies to my earlier post and explains and infers:
|#20 - Dr. Yes -
Thanks, Maarten, for all the info.
P.S. Something else: Do NOT underestimate this sadistic
creep, not so much because he has real intellectual nous, for
he has not (e.g. compared to those who have, like Roger
Penrose) but because he has very much power and is the very
willing Doberman Pincher of his government, and those living
under English law may be sectioned by him or his cronies.
Yes, it is very unwise to think
that he is a moron or that he will be somehow disgraced and
destroyed by, for example, the discovery of a causal role for XMRV.
He may be a lousy doctor and scientist, but he is obviously a
crafty politician, has lodged himself into a position of influence,
and has powerful friends.
Distortion is one of the maladaptive thinking patterns
outlined in CBT theory. It's like the brain in a vat theory--
it can't be disproven.
The unfalsifiable nature of many
psychological 'hypotheses' and 'theories', especially in the
psychosomatic field, ought to be their downfall but instead has
given them a major niche in medical practice. They take care of a
great many 'incoveniences' for incompetent or uncaring doctors and
for cost-cutting medical insurers and governments.
Re: Camelford, Was there ever a man so consistently
on the side of greed, expediency and nastiness? It's
quite a remarkable body of work.
It is.. he's like a psychiatric
I answer Dr. Yes and provide some background and information:
#21 - Maarten Maartensz - 090410
Dear Dr. Yes,
Originally Posted by Dr. Yes
Thanks, Maarten, for all the info.
Yes, it is very unwise to think that he
is a moron or that he will be somehow disgraced and
destroyed by, for example, the discovery of a causal role
for XMRV. He may be a lousy doctor and scientist, but he is
obviously a crafty politician, has lodged himself into a
position of influence, and has powerful friends.
The unfalsifiable nature of many psychological 'hypotheses'
and 'theories', especially in the psychosomatic field,
ought to be their downfall but instead has given them a
major niche in medical practice. They take care of a great
many 'incoveniences' for incompetent or uncaring doctors
and for cost-cutting medical insurers and governments.
It is.. he's like a psychiatric hitman!
+1 to all of that.
And I think Wessely is a sadist and he knows it. He probably also
is a fairly spineless person who adores authorities and wants to be
one himself. There is probably something sick in his family
background, what with his father in a train to Treblinka (a German
Endloesungs-lager). Anyway... clearly he is very dangerous because
of his power, position and government support.
Little personal background:
I gave up on reading - scientifically - about ME/CFS 20 years ago
ca. 1990 because (i) most of what I'd read (there was no internet
then) was waffle (constructed around "may" and "can") and (ii) I'd
been given Gijs Bleijenberg's Ph.D. which I considered total rot -
intellectually: rot, stylistically: rot, logically: rot,
scientifically: rot, medically: rot, psychologically: rot, morally:
creepy stinking rot - by the kind of person that never
should have been admitted into a university anyway for sheer lack
of intelligence, but that could get entrance in Dutch universities
over the past 30 years because of great levellings of the total
Dutch educational system (that I have protested 30 years against,
as a lone individual, but was strongly supported at long last in
2008 by a Parliamentary Committeee that drew most of the
conclusions I'd drawn and argued).
Dutch readers: Some of my published papers on that, since proven
With the internet I did some more (with a telephone modem until
last July, that doesn't allow fast or thorough searching at all)
but since I am very impatient with academic waffle, and most
academic publications are mostly waffle - it is a career, after
all, y'understand, for most tenured or would be tenured academics,
not a passion for truth or style - and since I am not very
interested in medicine as a science and have no special competency
in it either, I didn't do much around ME either, having been
convinced since 32 years it needs a bio-medical causal explanation.
It's only when the XMRV-news reached me, at the time I just had
come to have ADSL, that I dived into the literature on and around
ME, and found that Wessely, White, Sharpe etc. and Van der Meer and
Bleijenberg etc. have been systematically lying, travestying real
science, blocking the roads to real bio-medical research and its
funding, and have been manipulating and intrigueing like mad.
Meanwhile, I think I more or less understand Wessely, White and
They are faithful government or insurance-firm tools, who want to
be so, get well paid for it, and who just love exercising power and
hurting people under pretense of being medical scientists.
Bleijenberg & Van der Meer are harder to understand, on my present
They don't have the sort of politico-bureaucratic positions of
power that e.g. Wessely has (and Reed in the US had, who seems
similar to Wessely in outlook and motives), since such institutions
do not exist in Holland. (They would like to have it, no doubt, but
the instutions are not there for it in Holland.)
Very probably, both crave power and influence, but it also seems to
me, from the strong manly faces both have -
http://www.maartensz.org/log/2010/NL100405a.htm - that personal
failure plays a role: Bleijenberg obviously is a twit, and it seems
Van der Meer just can't make it intellectually in real internal
medicine, and took to drink (how else he got that face of his with
submerged lakes of alcohol apparently swimming under his eyes -
always apart from dysfunctional beliefs - escapes me).
What also plays a role, probably, for both groups, is that it is so
VERY much easier to publish waffle than real science.
Finally, as to
The unfalsifiable nature of many psychological 'hypotheses'
and 'theories', especially in the psychosomatic field,
ought to be their downfall but instead has given them a
major niche in medical practice. They take care of a great
many 'incoveniences' for incompetent or uncaring doctors
and for cost-cutting medical insurers and governments.
Indeed... but there is more to it, as also
emerges in the DSM-5 threads:
These rotters are redefining what science is to make it fit their
own interests, and at least Wessely is doing it on purpose. It's
here that post-modernism enters: Everything is supposedly
"interpretation"; in the end there is only The Text (so anything
goes: facts are texts to); "Everything is relative" .... in brief:
all becomes propaganda and turns around acquiring power and
influence by spindoctoring and astroturfing.
See: Scientific Realism versus Postmodernism
And the current pomo medical game with regards to ME and the DSM-5
is the "on the one hand", "on the other hand" strategy: There are a
soma and a psyche, these nutters hold, as if we are in medical
science still in the Middle Ages, and in things human The Psyche
(a.k.a. soul) rules, and over The Psyche The Psychiatric or
Psychotherapeutical Specialist has the say-so.
This is again a very pleasing story for the state and the
insurance-company, for not treating or investigating or helping ill
people on the socalled Evidence Based Ground (Wessely fecit: Bona
diagnosis, bona curatio....) that they are nut-cases is much
And thus it goes...
Anyway - waking up and indulging in some (fairly cogent and
Glad to see you around, Dr. Yes.
Orla knows more about Wessely's wayward ways of sadistic comforts for
|#22 - Orla - 090410
Psychiatrist says pardons for 'cowards' ease our pain
Mithriel, what you were
referring to, I have a few other interesting bits and pieces on
this issue. Worth bearing in mind that WW1 was an imperial war
(so no real justice or "cause" to it), and the soldiers were
treated like expendable cannon fodder. It was truly horrific
for the soldiers in combat.
Psychiatrist says pardons for 'cowards' ease our
By Michael Evans, Defence Editor
THE decision by the Government to pardon Private Harry
Farr and the other 304 soldiers executed for cowardice
and desertion in the First World War has been attacked
by a leading psychiatrist.
Simon Wessely, Professor of Epidemiological and Liaison
Psychiatry at King's College School of Medicine,
London, said that the Government was mistaken to pardon
the soldiers 90 years after the event.
"We should not succumb to the temptation to rewrite
history to make ourselves feel more comfortable about
the past," Professor Wessely said, writing in the
Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine.
Professor Wessely, who is also a consultant adviser in
psychiatry to the British Army, says that it was wrong
to reject the judgments made in 1916, when Private
Farr, of the West Yorkshire Regiment, was sentenced to
He questions the Government's decision, announced last
month, that it intended to put before Parliament an
order for a "statutory group pardon" for all 305
soldiers executed during the First World War. If passed
by Parliament, the pardon will be included in the Armed
In examining the case of Private Farr, regarded as one
strongest candidates for a pardon because of the
circumstantial evidence that he was suffering from
shell shock when he refused to return to the front
line, Professor Wessely said: "Private Farr had been
sent to hospital [suffering from] shell shock on three
different occasions before refusing to go to his front
line on September 17, 1916. However, shell shock is not
the same as post-traumatic stress disorder as we now
He added: "We can be sure that on the day in question
Private Farr was in a state of intense fear, but so
were all of the men in his battalion who faced the
prospect of going over the top, as indeed they did the
following morning, in an attack in which 150 of 600
were killed or wounded."
Shell shock, Professor Wessely said, was seen by many
convenient medical label to avoid duties on both sides
trenches". He agreed that Private Farr's execution had
tragic. "He was very unlucky, since in nine of ten
similar cases, death sentences were not carried out."
Professor Wessely added that the experts in 1916 were
"better placed than we are to make these terrible
judgments about character, mental breakdown and duty.
We should be thankful we do not have to make those
No doubt Simon the sadist is and should be quite willing to extend his
"We should not succumb to the temptation to rewrite history to make
ourselves feel more comfortable about the past,
to the inquisition, the KGB, the Gestapo, Pol Pot and - not to forget
- Abu Ghraib: The authorities of the time who tolerated and furthered the
acitivities of these military and semi-military men (a class of people
professor Wessely has publicly claimed he loves) OF COURSE were "better
placed than we are", to judge good and bad: "Everything is relative", you
know, and a born torturer knows best.
Orla knows yet more about Wessely's amazing ways to get his very own
#23 - Orla - 090410
Radio interview with Wessely re Shell Shock victim
This is a bit long but worth
looking at to see Wessely's absolute lack of compassion for the
family of the man they are talking about.
Following publication of his article “The life and death of
Private Harry Farr” in the Journal of The Royal Society of
Medicine (JRSM:2006:99:440-443), on 2nd September 2006 Wessely
was interviewed on the BBC’s Today programme on Radio 4 by John
Humphrys. This is the transcript.
John Humphries: A few weeks ago the media was
full of stories about Private Harry Farr the
soldier shot at dawn during the First World
War for cowardice, he was one of many, and
the big news was that the government had
decided he and the others should be pardoned,
now a leading psychiatrist Professor Simon
Wessely of the Institute of Psychiatry at
King`s College London who is a consultant to
the Army, says he should not be [pardoned].
He`s written an article in the Journal of the
Royal Society of Medicine about it and he`s
on the line, so is Lord Dubbs the Labour Peer
who argued for the pardon , why should he not
be pardoned Professor Wessely?
Simon Wessely: Well I think first of all I
think like most people
listening to the programme I wish things
hadn`t happened the way they did because I`m
opposed to the death penalty adamantly but I
think the problem we have here is two things
first most people probably don`t have much
idea of exactly what happened that night and
why it happened I mean my own children for
example get most of their knowledge of the
First World War from the last episode of
JH:And we`re talking about that night being a
night in October 1916 when he was in the
SW: He was indeed and he refused three times
to go forward with his comrades to take part
in an attack which all of them knew would be
very dangerous and catastrophic for many of
them as indeed it was..
JH: Well most of them died it was as simple
SW: Well a quarter of the batallion died and
of course he was judged by many of his
contemporaries at the time on that basis but
more importantly I think it`s that, it`s the
issue about, it`s not really for us to, from
our extremely comfortable present, to kind of
second guess and judge the past we can
understand it and understand why things
happened the way they did and sympathise with
both Farr and also those who were called on
to take those decisions and make those
judgements about him but I don`t think we can
rewrite histroy simply because we don`t like
JH: But are we rewriting history if we say
what we now know is that there is a condition
that we now call shell-shock and he, Private
Farr, was clearly suffering from that
therefore, to execute a man because he was
ill, which is what he was, we now believe to
be wrong therefore he should be pardoned
because even at the time it clearly wasn`t a
crime that he had committed or an offence
that he`d committed, the man couldn`t help
SW: There were two things clearly at the time
it was an offence that he`d committed there
was absolutely no doubt about that he had
deserted he`d shown cowardice in the face of
JH: But we now know it wasn`t cowardice,
that`s my point
SW: We don`t know that, it`s actually back
then they called it shell-shock, now we call
it something different, they did know that he
had a history of shell-shock, but it doesn`t
have the same meaning to them as it did to us
JH: That`s really my point, and Lord Dubbs
would you like to come in on that, I mean,
are we rewriting history?
Lord Dubbs: No I don`t think we are, we`re
accepting what happened and it clearly was an
offence at the time, but looking at it now we
believe that executing several hundred
people, young men who volunteered, Private
Farr was a regular, but some of them
volunteered to fight, they were below age,
and they suffered shell-shock and then they
just couldn`t take it anymore and we shot
them at dawn because of it, don`t forget
Private Farr had a trial lasting twenty
minutes, he had nobody to defend him and he`d
been ill three
times before with shell-shock, and the doctor
who had treated him before couldn`t give
evidence because he was badly injured, so
there was nobody to speak for Private Farr.
JH: So, hard to see why he shouldn`t be
pardoned again I repeat Professor Wessely.
SW: I think, I think it`s because again the
people who had to knew the same information
that Lord Dubbs has said, that thats` true,
but they had to weigh up all the various
things that were happening both the events on
that night and exactly the circumstances of
his offence which was a very very bad time
for him to do this most of the times he would
of course have been reprieved nine out of ten
times those who were sentenced to death it
was not carried out usually the military
showed compassion towards people in exactly
same situation as Harry Farr, on this
occasion they didn`t and there were reasons
for it it was partly the nature of his
offence, partly the changing views of
shell-shock in 1916, partly the wider issues
in 1916 we shouldn`t read history backwards..
JH: But wasn`t it mostly because they knew
that if they let him as it were, get away
with it then others would do the same? That`s
a very bad reason for executing somebody.
SW: Not neccessarily, I mean first of all
that`s partly true but usually they did
reprieve he was very unlucky, of those who
are sentenced to death for cowardice only 5%
were executed so usually they did show
compassion usually they did judge people who
had bad nerves, but remember this is a
terribly difficult judgement John, that night
everybody had bad nerves, they were all
JH: Isn`t that the thing Lord Dubbs?
LD: Well of course it`s a difficult judgement
but I`m not
criticising the people who made those
judgements at the time,what we`re saying
saying now is that 90 years later these are
people who fought for our country as Private
Farr did very bravely for two years, they
fought for our country and in the end we shot
them because they were shell shocked, and it
seems to me that the compassion we should
show is for their families. Private Farr`s
daughter is I believe 93 years old, their
families and their relatives are desperate
that the stigma should be taken away from
their loved ones.
JH: And isn`t that really the point in the
end Professor Wessely, and it does no harm
SW: No it doesn`t do any harm and you know
you could say yes it makes us feel better but
I don`t think that`s what we should be doing
though I do think it`s more important we
understand things as they were, we thank God
that we`re never going to be in that kind of
JH: But we can still understand them can`t
SW:But we can`t kind of make it better now ,
those things happened, things have changed,
we don`t see things the same way now..
LD: Look, we are making it better we`re
making it better for their families who`ve
argued for years that the stigma should be
taken away and that`s the important thing,
we`re doing for doing it for their families.
Simon, my littlen sadistic freak: Don't you dare utter one word about
the supposed suffering of your supposed father in the train to Treblinka!
You do not know shit about it, and the authorities and military men of
his day did there very human moral best to provide your dad with all mod
cons of those days. WRF does it matter that 6 million Jews were gassed,
after all, on your accounting:
"we can`t kind of make it better now , those things happened, things
have changed, we don`t see things the same way now.."
The reader should have noticed, incidentally, that Simon the Sadistic
Shrink has gone WAY out of his normal paths just to get the kicks of
denigrating and hurting the grandchildren of war victims of WWI.
And the reader should also notice Wesselies and twists and
misrepresents, also in front of the microphones of public radio, as he
sees fit: "Only" 5% got shot, he says, and earlier it were 10% according
to him; no one knows what happened in 1916, he says, but he describes
what "must have" happensed as if he was there; he is "opposed to the
death penalty adamantly" but does not want to pardon a man convicted to
it 90 years ago, on very flimsy evidence and having no proper defence
whatsoever; again he is "opposed to the death penalty adamantly" but
dialogues like so: "JH: That`s a very bad reason for executing somebody.
SW: Not neccessarily". Here is the sick sadistic joker in his full human
JH: And isn`t that really the point in the end Professor Wessely,
and it does no harm does it?
SW: No it doesn`t do any harm and you know you could say yes it makes
us feel better but I don`t think that`s what we should be doing
That is: Even if - especially if - something doesn't do any harm,
while it does a lot of good, professor Simon Wessely will go farr out of
his way to see to it that the good he acknowledges is good is not done,
so that the bad triumps.
|#24 - Orla - 090410
Just to put the human face on the background to the story. This is
part of an article from a UK newspaper
At last the family shame has gone
Sunday TimesAugust 20, 2006
John-Paul Flintoff meets the family who last week won
their 14-year fight to lift the taint of cowardice from
their grandfather, and asks: are we sanitising history
Gertrude Harris was 40 when she finally learnt what had
happened to her father. Harris, now 93, was at a dinner
with her extended family when an aunt asked: "What's
all this I hear about Harry?"
The aunt had left home after the first world war,
ignorant of the details of her elder brother's death.
But her surviving brothers declined to comment. "They
said, `Oh, we don't talk about that'," Harris recalls.
That dinner took place in the early 1950s. Afterwards,
Harris confronted her mother, Harry Farr's widow.
"And she said, `Well, I've kept it to myself all these
years, but now I will tell you that your father was
shot for cowardice'."
This week the Ministry of Defence announced a pardon
for Private Farr, along with 305 other servicemen
executed between 1914 and 1918.
In the light of modern ideas about soldiery and a
somewhat clearer understanding of shell shock, or
post-traumatic stress disorder, most people have
greeted the news with approval.
After all, the number of soldiers deserting and absent
without leave has more than doubled since the start of
the Iraq war. Nearly 2,800 went missing from their
units between 2003 and 2005. These days the army tends
to write them off in their absence, not even bothering
with a court martial. Just imagine the outrage, today,
if they were rounded up and shot. Or if the same fate
attended the 800-odd troops
who have been sent home from Iraq for treatment at the
Priory clinic after developing psychiatric illnesses in
the war zone.
Sceptics argue that a retrospective pardon of soldiers
executed 90 years ago is meaningless. Correlli Barnett,
the military historian, says the decisions were taken
from a different moral perspective. Another, Sir John
Keegan, says a pardon essentially seeks to impose "a
sanitised version of the past".
Farr's family has campaigned in the courts for years to
achieve this. The news, conveyed to Harris by telephone
by John Dickinson, her lawyer, on Tuesday, was utterly
unexpected. "He said, `Gertie, you've got it.' I didn't
understand. I said, `Sorry?' And he said, `You've got
the pardon for Harry'."
That night she was unable to sleep at her home in
Harrow, northwest London. She kept the radio on and
hourly news bulletins reminded her that her father had
Government figures, including John Major, the
Conservative former prime minister, and Geoff Hoon and
John Reid, the Labour former defence ministers, have
persistently opposed a pardon, presumably on the
grounds that it might present an unwelcome precedent.
Des Browne, the current defence minister, was careful
to emphasise that the pardon was aimed substantially at
easing the suffering of the executed men's families:
"Although this is a historical matter, I am conscious
of how the families feel today. They have had to endure
a stigma for decades."
Gertrude Harris was born a year before the war started.
Her mother, also called Gertrude, had met Farr when she
was 16. Having already served in the army as a regular
soldier, he was among the first troops sent to France.
He saw action at the battle of Neuve Chappelle in March
1915, when 11,500 British soldiers died or went missing
in three days. In just 35 minutes, more ammunition was
fired than in the entire Boer war. In May he fought at
Aubers Ridge, in which another 11,000 British soldiers
were lost. Shortly after, he was diagnosed with shell
Officers in similar situations were sent home to
recover, but not Farr.
After five months of treatment in France — during which
time nurses had to write letters home because he could
not hold a pen in his shaking hand — he was sent back
to fight at the Somme in July 1916. But he was not
ready and by September he had lost his nerve
He told the court martial: "On the sergeant-major's
reported to him and said I was sick and could not stand
it. He then said, `You are a f****** coward and you
will go to the trenches. I give f*** all for my life
and I give f*** all for yours and I'll get you f******
Two men were ordered to conduct Farr to the front.
"They commenced to shove me. I told them not to as I
was sick enough as it was. The sergeant-major then
grabbed my rifle and said, `I'll blow your f******
brains out if you don't go'. I then called out for an
officer but there were none there."
A captain in the 1st West Yorkshire Regiment reported
that Farr had shown good conduct and character — except
under fire: "I cannot say what has destroyed this man's
nerves, but he has proved himself on many occasions
incapable of keeping his head in action and likely to
cause a panic."
The tribunal disregarded Farr's medical history. "He
was in hospital for five months," says his daughter
now. "Would they have kept him there if he was well
enough to fight? No, he was a helpless mess."
Farr represented himself at the tribunal, which lasted
minutes. He was shot at Carnoy at 6am on October 18,
1916. He refused to wear a blindfold.
Shortly afterwards his widow received an official
letter: "It is
with regret that I have to inform you that Pte Harry
Farr has been shot for showing cowardice." It would
have been bad enough to learn that he had been killed
in action. This was much worse. She shoved the letter
away and told nobody.
However, she started to look unwell and as people
challenged her over this she admitted the truth to her
parents and in-laws. Harry's own father was a military
man. As soon as he was told, the blinds of the home
were drawn in shame. Nobody mentioned Harry in front of
Soon after, Farr's widow went to the post office to be
told that her pension had been stopped. She was 21 with
a three-year-old girl to support. Unable to pay rent,
she was turned out onto the streets. So she went
looking for a job in service, eventually finding a post
as kitchen maid at a house in Hampstead, north London,
where she was allowed to take her daughter.
She had only one photograph of her husband and every
year at Armistice Day she suffered terribly. "Nobody
knows the feelings," she once said. "Every year I feel
worse because I look at all those men who've been
through it and came home and I think my husband should
be with them."
Mother and daughter kept the secret until the late
1980s when Gertrude Harris's daughter, Janet Booth,
said that she was taking her family to France and
wanted to visit her grandfather's grave. "There was a
look passed between my grandmother and my mother,"
Booth recalls. "And my grandmother said, `He hasn't got
In 1990 the government released papers relating to the
first world war courts martial. Farr's widow watched a
television interview with Andrew MacKinlay, the Labour
MP for Thurrock, who said that he was going to try to
secure pardons. Booth got in touch with him and
introduced him to her grandmother, then 99 years old.
They brought Julian Putkowski, a military historian who
had written extensively about the executed men.
Putkowski recorded an interview with Farr's widow in
which she poured out her memories for the first time.
It was broadcast on Radio 4 and a copy remains in the
archive of the Imperial War Museum.
Three months later she died. But the campaign was
unstoppable, Booth says. "The reason I started was for
my grandmother, and when she died it was for my mother.
It's been 14 years. It's taken a long time, but we
can't take all the credit. We have had so much help.
We're delighted that not only have we got a pardon for
my grandfather but also for the other 305. That's the
icing on the cake."
Later on in the war, relatives of executed men got
letters saying they had been killed "in action". Many
relatives remained ignorant of the truth for decades,
Booth says: "One chap found out only two days ago what
had happened to his relative."
Of the 306 men who will now be pardoned, 266 were
executed for desertion, 18 for cowardice, seven for
quitting their posts, six for striking or showing
violence to their superiors, five for disobedience, two
for sleeping at their post and two for casting away
arms. Another 37 were shot for murder and three for
Gary Sheffield, professor of history at King's College
London, says a general pardon fails to distinguish
between those who deliberately let down their comrades
and those who did not....
An aside on professor Sheffield, who is a mate of professor Wessely's
at King's College London: (1) it is over 90 years ago (2) the interests
of children, grandchildren etc. are at issue, not the reputation of the
English Army (or only it it concerns stupid insensitivity close to sadism
(3) you can't do the court trails again (4) everybody who is not a
professor at King's College London and knows a little of WWI knows that
the behaviour of the English military command in WWI towards their own
troops was often atrocious and devoid of all reason, rationality and
Orla knows even more:
|#26 - Orla - 090410
A few comments on parts of
We for example have shown that the ‘flashback’,
characteristic of modern posttraumatic stress
disorder, is absent from medical files of shell shock
victims of the First World War; but this is not an
Just because they are not on
the medical notes doesn't mean it didn't happen.
I am not convinced that Shell Shock was purely a
psychological phenomenon. I wonder whether it was something
of an umbrella terms for people with a range of "unexplained"
health conditions who had been at the war front?
Having seen footage of people who had "shell-shock", some had
real difficulty walking, were sort of wobbling all over the
place, and not just psychiatric problems. I think in some
cases this carried on for years. Of course it cannot be
studied properly now but I wonder whether there was some sort
of neurological injury in some cases?
So the label of shell shock, which to our modern mind
is synonymous with psychiatric disorder, and should
automatically have meant mercy for Farr, was more
ambiguous to the people of 1916. It was already
falling into disrepute, and was being increased seen
on both sides of the trenches as a convenient medical
label for people to avoid their duties, and would be
banned completely as a diagnosis in 1917
That view was obviously
coloured by military/political policy. (He is, in theory,
putting what happened in context, but in a way accepting
politically motivated decisions as if they were acceptable or
There were no psychiatrists available on the Western
Front (psychiatrists were mainly asylum doctors
anyway who looked after the insane), but if a modern
psychiatrist had made the journey back in time to
interview Farr, it is probable the diagnosis would be
of some form of anxiety, phobic or post-traumatic
stress disorder (the diagnoses are not exclusive).
A phobic disorder is when a person experiences severe
irrational disabling symptoms out of proportion to
any actual risk. There is no rational reason to
be crippled with anxiety when confronted with a
spider, nor to have panic attacks inside a
supermarket. But there was nothing irrational
about Farr's fears that night—indeed, one might
argue that refusing to go ‘over the top’ was the most
rational response to the situation
A bit off topic for this
discussion, but when I saw this comment on phobias, I thought
I would point it out. Exercise phobia came up onanother
thread. I mentioned on that thread that phobia would mean
something in particular to mental health professionals, not
just a little rational worry about something, and that is
basically (in bold) what they would mean by a phobia.
It seems very probable that Farr was suffering from a
psychiatric disorder, even if we do not know which
And yet, he insists on being
against the pardon.
Competing interests Simon Wessely is Co-Director of
the King's Centre for Military Health Research, part
of King's College London. He is also Honorary
Civilian Advisor in Psychiatry for the British Army.
Edit, in theory he is
putting the event in conext in this article, but in practice
he is avoiding mentioning the bigger picture of the war,
motivations for the war, how the "higher up" people in the
army or government viewed the people on the front (basically
as expendable). And another poetry moment thay I think
illustrates some of what I am talking about:
by Siegfried Sassoon
If I were fierce, and bald, and short of
I’d live with scarlet Majors at the Base,
And speed glum heroes up the line to
You’d see me with my puffy petulant face,
Guzzling and gulping in the best hotel,
Reading the Roll of Honour. “Poor young
I’d say—”I used to know his father well;
Yes, we’ve lost heavily in this last
And when the war is done and youth stone
I’d toddle safely home and die—in bed.
Sassoon - if you didn't notice - satirizes the English military
command and higher officers, who indeed had a farr better chance to
survive the war than the ordinary soldiers, as is always the case since
troopleaders ceased to walk in front of the troops and fight their fights
And yet again the mighty Orla knows more:
|#28 - Orla - 090410
I have some notes I took from a documentary on the first world war
which covered the issue of shell shock. I will look for it and see
if there is anything relevant.
And if people can bear it, here is another article on Wessely, with
some interesting history and comment on CFS. Sandhurst is some sort
of military training college. I have put some of the text below in
bold and underlined to highlight some important points.
The Lancet, Volume 369, Issue 9575, Page 1783, 26 May 2007
Perspectives, Lunch with The Lancet
by Geoff Watts
I tell an acquaintance I'm having lunch with the man who
leads the UK's King's Centre for Military Health Research. He
offers sympathy. "Bit of a stuffed shirt, I suppose. Very
proper." Actually, no. In outlook and demeanour the entirely
unmilitary Simon Wessely is less Sandhurst than S & D—this
latter being his shorthand for the Sun and Doves, the local
gastropub where we met. And the royal patronage
implied in the Centre's title is merely a reference to its
home in King's College, London. Wessely, a psychiatrist,
works with the military, likes and respects them, but is
definitely not of them. "Some people go to the Amazon rain
forest to study strange tribes. I go to Sandhurst and
Colchester. They have their own rules and customs."
Set up in the mid 1990s, the King's Centre studies the health
of service personnel: Gulf War veterans in the first
instance. Wessely had already made waves with his research
on chronic fatigue (CF). The work played a big part in
changing the way that the illness is treated, and his
doubts about the popular viral theory of CF made him some
enemies. "There's a small number of people who are almost
psychotically obsessed with me. But I'm used to that."
Then came the Gulf War and its aftermath. "I started
seeing reports of soldiers who were exactly like my CF
patients. At the same time it was clear that the MoD
[Ministry of Defence] was making a dog's breakfast of dealing
with it. Every time a Gulf veteran died, the headline was
`Veteran dies of Gulf War Syndrome'. The MoD hadn't got even
the most elementary mortality statistics." Wessely saw a
research opportunity, and seized it. More controversy. Is
this something he regrets or enjoys? "A bit of both." With
hindsight he admits "I could have been more diplomatic. I
wasn't thinking about the language I used or its impact. I
was just keen to get into print." He understands why
patients would prefer to be told they've acquired a virus.
Nowadays, he reckons, he can make a better fist of handling
What Wessely loves most about psychiatry is the multiplicity
of factors that contribute to every condition. Nothing, he
says enthusiastically, is ever clear cut. Which is
perhaps why, if he had to choose an alternative occupation,
it would be history. When writing about neurasthenia in
Victorian England and charting the management of shell shock
in World War I, he's taken pleasure in these opportunities to
taste his alternative career. Leaving Wessely outside the S &
D I recall his advice on what not to do when working with the
military. "You mustn't try and pretend you're one of them",
He is saying that he would choose
his words (rather than ideas) more carefully if he had to do it
over again. I have noticed that the psycho-social school sometimes
write more diplomatically now, same ridiculous ideas, but more
manipulative language. Personally I prefer it when they come
straight out and say what they are thinking.
Note incidentally as regards to
What Wessely loves most about psychiatry is the multiplicity of
factors that contribute to every condition. Nothing, he says
enthusiastically, is ever clear cut.
This is astrofturf and lies for the media: In his published work he
never admits that he may be mistaken; he studiously avoids
mentioning any scientific publications that show he is mistaken (there
are many); and he presents his sick sadistic shrink wrapped madness
always as if it is uncontrovertible solid scientifically established
Koan is somewhat amazed by learning all of the above:
|#29 - Koan - 090410
Thank you, Orla and Mithriel, for reminding me of all the grim
details of this tragic story. I can sometimes begin to feel pity
for Simon Wessely because he begins to appear such a sad a
desperate little fool but when I am reminded of his immense
cruelty... Base Details was just right. Just right.
It's unbelievable, really, that someone could go on and on being
pathologically cruel and be well compensated for it. I forget,
sometimes, that something so bizarre is possible. I really do think
he gets away with it because ordinary people, like me, find it hard
to remember that this kind of thing really does go on and that
sadistic people can appear banal and slightly idiotic.
Actually, he also gets away with it because the people he works for
have the same feelings for him, one would confidently guess, as dr.
Mengele's superiors had about dr. Mengele: He is a very useful and
willing servant, worthy of protection and assistance, to get all manner
of dirty work done under the guise of a medical diploma, and to get all
manner of lies accepted by the public as if it were real science.
Next, I enter with a little piece of logic and an interesting literary
|#30 - Maarten
Maartensz - 090410
Originally Posted by Mithriel
Quite so: Just as I thought
(hypnotised, the brain uses other circuiting than not hypnotised,
and since hypnosis is unexplained, mostly, the reasoning used for
the "proof" is fallacious).
Also, a very nice novel about it is Reginald Hill's "The Wood
Beyond", who seems to treat Farr's case, novellistically but quite
well. I think you'll like it if you didn't read it: he is an
excellent and witty writer.
Dr. Yes is once more amazed and disgusted by learning what Orla
|#33 - Dr. Yes -
Orla, thank you once again for filling me with disgust.
"A phobic disorder is when a person experiences
severe irrational disabling symptoms out of
proportion to any actual risk"
That is an incredible statement,
even for him. The "actual risk" in this case was being blown to
bits, shot dead, or gassed. How can any concern be "irrational" or
"out of proportion" to the high probablility of one of those things
happening in WW I trench warfare? It would technically be more
irrational to obey orders...
And yet, he insists on being against the pardon.
It has to be for political
reasons, i.e. an effort to quash sympathy for and discussion of
victims of GWI and PTSD. He is doing exactly the same thing about
ME/CFS; trying to prevent the governments and insurers from having
to compensate victims of this disease (or any other one he and his
colleagues can manage to label as "medically unexplained
Btw, as you noted, I didn't know that 'cowardice' was a psychiatric
"There's a small number of people who are almost
psychotically obsessed with me. But I'm used to that."
Oooh, can I make that my
"What Wessely loves most about psychiatry is the multiplicity
of factors that contribute to every condition. Nothing, he
says enthusiastically, is ever clear cut."
Of course, that spares him from
ever having to REALLY figure anything out. It becomes a playground
for weak minds.
"Which is perhaps why, if he had to choose an
alternative occupation, it would be history."
He would be well suited to the
history departments in many universities. You can arrange or ignore
evidence however you want to fit your own biases, and rewrite
reality on a daily basis.
Great points by you as well Mithriel. I was thinking the same
thing. All the explosive devices used in WW I (and even worse since
then) are capable of shattering ear drums and damaging peripheral
vestibular systems that control equilibrium. They also induce
concussions, which cause brain damage themselves. Quite a few
American football players have suffered from something called
Multiple Concussion Syndrome; the first time I read about the
symptoms of one player, I was stunned by how closely they resembled
my own. It can't have been 'deconditioning'; these guys are of
course in incredible shape; yet they suffered some of the same
symptoms that for us are dismissed as 'deconditioning effects' by
so many doctors.
Can we get this information on Wessely out to a wider audience? Not
just within ME/CFS communities... all of this would, for example,
be the basis for a great piece in Harper's or any number of other
magazines. I can see the caricature now..
(Also, perhaps certain people within the ME/CFS community
who feel it is appropriate to try to convince or be convinced by
the arguments of people like Wessely would benefit from knowing
what they are dealing with.)
Justin Reilly registers his own amazement and provides more of a link
to Wessely busy with lying in front of cameras originally found by Koan:
|#36 - justinreilly
Wow, he never ceases to amaze me. Veterans get PTSD because they
saw in Platoon that they're supposed to get flashbacks??
Shell-shocked veterans were 'unmanly'?- look who's talking! Will
someone flush this turd already?
Youtube video footage of Wessely]
Orla answers Dr. Yes and considers a very sensible diagnosis of
#37 - Orla - 100410
Orla, thank you once again for filling me with disgust.
No problem, my pleasure
About the phobia thing, I should have quoted the full thing.
The link to the article is not working as that journal website
seems to be down today, so I cannot go back to put in fuller
quote which is what I was going to do now.[Edit, I have now
done it] But I think he was saying that you couldn't say this
guy had a phobia, because in a phobia the fear has to be out of
proportion to the risk, but in this case fear would be normal.
I just quoted what he said about what a phobia is, not because
of the discussion here, but because of the discussion on the
CAA thread where it was being implied (by some CAA matieral,
apparently) that some ME/CFS patients were exercise/movement
phobic, and I thought it was useful to be reminded of how
psychiatrists view phobias in general. It is clearly not
irrational to be a bit worried about exercise in ME/CFS.
<What Wessely loves most about psychiatry is the
multiplicity of factors that contribute to every
condition. Nothing, he says enthusiastically, is ever
Of course, that spares him from ever having to REALLY
figure anything out. It becomes a playground for weak
Yes, he can waffle to his
hearts content, and also be right so many times, as like a
psychic he is spreading the risks by saying a few different
things at the same time, so that one of the things he says
might be right.
"Which is perhaps why, if he had to choose an
alternative occupation, it would be history."
He would be well suited to the history departments in
many universities. You can arrange or ignore evidence
however you want to fit your own biases, and rewrite
reality on a daily basis.
What is that you are saying
ok just kidding
Great points by you as well Mithriel. I was thinking
the same thing. All the explosive devices used in WW I
(and even worse since then) are capable of shattering
ear drums and damaging peripheral vestibular systems
that control equilibrium. They also induce concussions,
which cause brain damage themselves. Quite a few
American football players have suffered from something
called Multiple Concussion Syndrome; the first time I
read about the symptoms of one player, I was stunned by
how closely they resembled my own. It can't have been
'deconditioning'; these guys are of course in
incredible shape; yet they suffered some of the same
symptoms that for us are dismissed as 'deconditioning
effects' by so many doctors.
That is very interesting.
Orla has more on how Wessely made out - for the financial benefit of
the aithorities, the insurance industry and himself - that people who
were poisoned with aluminium in their water supply made it all up by
#39 - Orla - 100410
Camelford water incident
Thanks for the link. Is there
no end to what this man well get up to? He is like a gun for
hire to help cover things up.
That second article there has this:
In the Journal of Psychosomatic Research, Vol 39, No 1.
pp.1 9. 1995, Wessely together with his colleague
Anthony David, published a paper entitled 'The Legend
Of Camelford : Medical Consequences Of A Water
Pollution Accident' (http://tinyurl.
com/3a4fev). "There was little cause for concern,"
announced Wessely. He also accused Camelford residents
of somatisation and the media of irresponsible
reporting of this water-poisoning incident. Wessely
apparently also blamed those affected of
sensationalising their symptoms in order to get
Here is one recent comment from a Green party member:
"It was a scandal. As in the Black Report on the
Seascale leukaemias, they used the scholastic method,
not the scientific method, to decide that there was no
causal link between the chemicals in the water and the
I have heard about a few other
things Wessely has been involved with (when I have the energy I
will look for the information). He seems to have roughly the
same script for every condition.
And Koan, thank you for that lovely little video of him
waffling away as usual. I have the notes from his speech at
Gresham college (aren't I lucky?).
V99 imagines what would be the case if Wessely had spoken about 9/11:
|#40 - V99 - 100410
Imagine what he would make of those who were at ground zero
breathing in the dust.
Orla knows what happened in fact:
#41 - Orla - 100410
Unfortunately we don't have to imagine V99. I have out some of the
text below in bold.
World Trade Centre syndrome
We are healthier than ever - but fear is making us ill.
by Simon Wessely
Similarly, the emergence of 'World Trade Syndrome', a
vague collection of symptoms among the residents of Lower
Manhattan, blamed on various 'toxins' released after the
collapse of the Twin Towers, only makes sense in the context
of a seemingly endless list of other mysterious symptoms and
syndromes that are blamed on similar toxic disasters.
.... it is precisely because we are healthier, with higher
expectations of the power of medicine, that we have actively
encouraged the spread of medicine into areas where it has not
gone before. We medicalise the non-pathological - and this is
instituted not just by the medical professions but by the
consumers themselves. So the normal symptoms and malaise that
are part of the human condition, exacerbated by encounters
with adversity such those on and after 11 September, are now
more likely to be medicalised.
Who do I blame for this? In the UK, I blame generations of
politicians who have been in charge of the health service,
and who have found it hard to say 'enough is enough' -
instead writing 'patients' charters', which perpetuate the
idea that unrealistic expectations can be met.
...research has shown that one explanation in particular is
on the increase, and that that the 'environment'.
Increasingly, it is the environment - mystery bugs, toxins,
chemicals, pollution, and so on, that is blamed for those
non-specific symptoms that have always been with us.
One reason why this has happened is our increasing awareness
....We only have ourselves to blame for allowing this to
happen. Anthraxiety and World Trade Centre Syndrome are the
latest consequences of an ideology that tells us that our
physical environment is responsible for most of our bodily
discomforts and ills. We have created a climate in which
a maverick, disgruntled individual can bring a society to its
knees by adding anthrax to a letter.
Simon Wessely is professor of psychiatry at King's College
London, and is speaking at the spiked conference After 11
September: Fear and Loathing in the West, on Sunday 26
These are just some extracts,
worth reading in full if you can stomach it.
Note Wessely's witchdoctor-like claim (amidst a lot of insane prose,
in which he promptly and impertinently found yet two more 'somatoform
psychiatric disorders': 'Anthraxiety' - full cousin of 'kinesophobia' -
and 'World Trade Centre Syndrome', which is no doubt the New York
firebrigades' form of 'Chronic Fatigue Syndrome') that
"We only have ourselves to blame for allowing this to happen.
Anthraxiety and World Trade Centre Syndrome are the latest consequences
of an ideology that tells us that our physical environment is
responsible for most of our bodily discomforts and ills."
That is: Unless you are a rich or powerful private patient of Simon,
who always promptly paid Simon's hefty bills also, you are not really ill;
you are yourself responsible for dysfunctionally believing that you are
ill; you are yourself responsible for dysfunctionally feeling that you
have pains; YOU THOUGHT YOURSELF SICK YOURSELF;
you are a wimp, a malinger, a liar or a financially costly personally
worthless parasite; and you urgently need CBT + GET in order to
brainwash you back to a proper ordinary well-adjusted lover of society
while righeously punishing you with work you cannot do for having the
temerity to say you are ill while the savants of King's College deny you
Moreover, Simon the Sadistic Shrink tells you and everybody else "our
physical environment" has nothing to do with your
beliefs and feelings that you - yes you, who are not rich or powerful,
and can pay private practice and real science from your own pocket - are
merely "ill": Professor Simon the Sadistic Shrink has personally proved that all
medicine, all biochemistry, all physiology, indeed the whole "physical
environment" is nothing but an illusion or a text in the mind, about
the truth-value and probability of which ONLY psychiatrists
approved by Professor Simon have the right to judge (you are a
dysfunctional with dysfunctional beliefs, unless rich, powerful or staff
From Professor Wessely bio-medical science is an illusion, is "all in
the mind", is "only between the ears" ('see' Simon the Sadist yells here
triumphantly: 'See that I allow the brain as a valid explanation, since it
is between the ears?!'), and in fact the inquisition had it pat long ago:
Confess you are insane when you think you are ill to an inquisitioner
with a CBT diploma, or get ready to be stretched on the rack by
KCL-diplomaed givers of GET.
Back to Koan, who still is amazed and asks a very relevant, indeed
psychiatrically justified question:
#42 - Koan - 100410
This diatribe is dated May 23, 2002. So, SW had formed and was
shopping a theory regarding what ailed people who lived in an
environment which was literally blanketed in a thick snow of
pulverized buildings and airplanes - a hitherto unique situation -
following a terrorist attack which took place just 8 months
I cannot understand how he is allowed to carry on with his half
baked ideas which drip with psychopathology consistent with having
a big, big issue with illness in others. I am left, always,
wondering who in this man's early life was ill -- one of his
parents, his mother perhaps? Why did that upset him so much and why
has he been unable to come to terms with his anger and anxiety as
an adult doctor.
No matter what scenario he is faced with, he finds a way to explain
all symptoms and distress as whinging. It's stunning. It's also
pathological. I do not believe he is a happy or a well adjusted
Here I enter again, for I happen to have some relevant knowledge and
background, psychologically, psychiatrically and personally speaking:
|#43 - Maarten
Maartensz - 100410
Partial elucidation of professor Simon Wessely's many mental issues
This is an amazing thread with lots of facts I did not
know but that certainly strongly support my analysis of the
man. I'll probably work this over for my site.
I do have one elucidation. You wrote (I snip what I don't react
Originally Posted by Koan
He clearly isn't and seems to
be compensating a lot. My own guess is that it may have to do
with his father, who was in a train to Treblinka during
WW II, which was a German death-camp ('Vernichtungslager', in
German). The least this caused in many people who survived this
(few) was PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). He may well
have been maltreated by his father.
I don't think that excuses anything he did - and my
father survived almost 4 years of German concentration- camp,
but not for being Jewish, but for being a communist resistance
fighter. These tended to survive the camps in better condition
than people arrested for being Jewish.
As it happens, I am an atheist who is circumcised (not a common
operation in Holland, as it is in the US), and I have known
several Jewish Communist comrades of my father - "Jewish
Bolsheviks": The most hated by the SS in the
concentration-camps - who indeed were in the same camps as my
father was, for the same reason (and who didn't let on they
were of "an inferior race", in Goebbels' terms).
This is one of the reasons, by the way, I am no fan of 'human
equality' all the way down, or 'respect' for anyone for being
there, in an apparent human form: I know more than most of my
generation and later ones about what happened in German
concentration-camps, and there simply were human beasts, like
Anyway... Simon Wessely is a very despicable man, and the fact
that there may be some sort of lame excuse and partial
explanation changes nothing about it and is no exonaration or
Also, if necessary I will needle him in this way,
psychoanalytically perfectly justified also, on my site, for I
despise people out on harming, hurting, denigrating,
maltreating and deceiving people who did them no harm
whatsoever. And I despise post-modern dr. MEngeles who can't
even excuse themselves they did their misdeeds during a war, in
a totalitarian state.
They make me sick with moral disgust, as indeed my father was
sickened with moral disgust on seeing the razzias on the Jews
P.S. One reason Simon Wessely sickens up to the military
so much may well be that after WW II many of the surviving Jews
blamed themselves for not having resisted (more).
A little later: See
Title: ME: Elucidating professor Simon Wessely many mental
for some posts of mine to the Phoenix Forums - new logo in
place: Yay, as they say - with some added frills.
For Dutchmen: Here is my father on his experiences in the camps
when applying for a socalled Resistance-Pension, which he got -
a miserably small one, on purpose, because he still was a
Title: Mijn vader verhaalt van concentratie-kampen:
And about there it stands at the moment, and I have compiled this in
one file, with my remarks, so that it is available in one file as food
for thought about modern psychiatry in general and professor Simon
Wessely in particular, the sick sanctiomonious sadist, who will no doubt
like to say that I am one of those who belongs to this class of people:
"There's a small number of people who are almost psychotically
obsessed with me. But I'm used to that."
No Simon Wessely: You are just a despicable
piece of human shit, a degenerate sadist, an evident dr. Mengele in human
motivation. You're the born personal physician of Heydrich,
Goebbels or Hitler. If you want to section me, you must go to court - and
I am glad you have to go to court in Europe, and then we will see whether
your tales, your lies, your deceptions, your misrepresentations,
also in the light of the God knows how many
people you have indirectly killed or driven to suicide, hold water
when an independent judge takes an independent look at the evidence, some
of which you find in ME-documentation.
For my part,
I hope that you die, and your death wil come soon
I'll follow your casket on a pale afternoon,
And watch while you're lowered unto your deathbed
And stand over your grave till I am sure that your dead.
P.S. This is it for the moment, and eventual corrections must
wait till later, in view of my many dysfunctional beliefs, Simon says.
And only I have the responsibility for my words - and Maarten
Maartensz is mad iff Simon Wessely is not mad, according to Simon
Wessely's own teachings, also as seen above.
Indeed, dear reader: I fear you are mad - KCL-style(**)
- if you dare disagree with Simon Wessely's teachings. I can't help it
that he is that manner of a man.
See also: P.S. of 12 april
(*) End of "Masters of War" by Robert Zimmerman, as
it sits in my memory.
(**) KCL = King's College London, an English
university where Wessely teaches.
($) Correction Apr 14 2010 (as informed via the
Phoenix Forms) from "British Medical Association".
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