Monthly Archives: July 2014

Meditations On Moloch

I. Allen Ginsberg’s famous poem on Moloch: What sphinx of cement and aluminum bashed open their skulls and ate up their brains and imagination? Moloch! Solitude! Filth! Ugliness! Ashcans and unobtainable dollars! Children screaming under the stairways! Boys sobbing in … Continue reading

Weird Psychiatric Ads Of The Seventies

There’s a really famous ad for thorazine, a drug that came out in the fifties and was the first effective antipsychotic. Less well-known are all the other weird, wonderful and creepy psychiatric ads from the past century. I was able … Continue reading

More Links For July 2014

The most embarassing part of the Slavoj Zizek plagiarism scandal isn’t that Zizek committed plagiarism. It isn’t even that he plagiarized a white supremacist website. It’s the way the plagiarism was discovered. Steve Sailer was reading a Zizek book and … Continue reading

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Some Antibiotic Stagnation

In the past week I’ve written about antibiotics and the rate of technological progress. So when a graph about using antibiotics to measure the rate of scientific progress starts going around the Internet, I take note. Unfortunately, it’s inexcusably terrible. … Continue reading

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The Other Codex

I did okay for myself this first year at my job and had a little bit of money left over. I told myself I was allowed to buy one moderately ridiculous luxury item as a reward. And ever since I … Continue reading

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No Skyscraper Stagnation

Since we’re on the subject of whether technological progress has stagnated, I thought I’d address an issue that always seems to come up sooner or later. Is there a decline in American skyscrapers possibly indicating a decline in American civilization? … Continue reading

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Promising The Moon

I. The year 1969 comes up to you and asks what sort of marvels you’ve got all the way in 2014. You explain that cameras, which 1969 knows as bulky boxes full of film that takes several days to get … Continue reading

Open Thread 2: Free Minds, Free Threads

Time for another Open Thread / Housekeeping Thread. 1. Commenter Lila wants to signal-boost the existence of psychiatric advanced directives, where you can write a (somewhat legally binding) plan for a future in which you become too mentally ill to … Continue reading

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HeartMath Considered Incoherent

[Note: all opinions expressed here are my own. Nothing to be taken as medical advice.] A group called the Institute of HeartMath has been remarkably persistent at making their way into my hospital. A couple of months ago I had … Continue reading

Psychotropic Base Rates: The Argument From Antibiotics

The obscure antiprotozoal drug suramin has the prettiest molecular structure I’ve ever seen. It also has some evidence as a potential treatment for autism based on a cell danger response model of the condition. I’m not going to get too … Continue reading