Pyramid Comment

This journal takes an alternative view on current affairs and other subjects. The approach is likely to be contentious and is arguably speculative. The content of any article is also a reminder of the status of those affairs at that date. All comments have been disabled. Any and all unsolicited or unauthorised links are absolutely disavowed.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Petition: Antipsychotic Drugs and Children

Please Sign the Teen Screen Petition
Original Posting by: ""
Mon Dec 25, 2006 6:47 pm (PST)

  • For months I have been going to pass this link along and ask you to sign the Teen Screen Petition. I have testified to school boards about the dangers of this program and would encourage you to do anything you can to stop this program! It is clearly one of the greatest tools of the drug companies to get more vulnerable victims addicted early in life to these deadly drugs. And if the program does not endanger your child directly via consuming these drugs themselves, it will endanger your child by getting those they associate with in school to take them.
Ann Blake-Tracy, Executive Director

To: School Board Members and State and Federal Legislators

Whereas children as young as 9, who previously had not thought of the concept of suicide, are being asked invasive and leading questions by TeenScreen such as: Have you tried to kill yourself in the last year? Are you still thinking of killing yourself? Have you thought seriously about killing yourself? Have you often thought about killing yourself? Have you ever tried to kill yourself?" and kids are being lured into doing the suicide survey by TeenScreen's offers of free movie passes, food coupons, pizza parties and $50 mall gift certificates.

Whereas the goal of TeenScreen leaders is to screen every American child before they graduate from high school;

Whereas TeenScreen is based on the controversial and unscientific Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, written by psychiatrists with financial ties to drug companies and children screened by TeenScreen are not given valid medical testing such as brain scans, blood test, urine tests, X-Rays or any other valid medical tests to detect evidence of any possible physical abnormality that may be contributing to certain behavior.

Whereas, according to TeenScreen psychiatrist David Shaffer, mental disorders in the DSM were developed by psychiatrists "shouting out their opinions from all sides of the room and whoever shouted loudest tended to be heard. My own impression, coming straight from England, was it was more like a tobacco auction than a sort of conference." and according to Shaffer, TeenScreen "... does identify a whole bunch of kids who aren’t really suicidal, so you get a lot of false-positives. And that means if you’re running a large program at a school, you’re going to cripple the program because you’re going to have too many kids you have to do something about";

Whereas TeenScreen has screened children across the nation without written parental consent in violation of federal law and state laws and has screened children across the nation without fully informed consent and did not warn parents that after taking the TeenScreen suicide survey, certain children have been and will be labeled with false mental disorders, based upon the unscientific DSM and the "chemical imbalance of the brain" theory, which relies solely upon observation and for which no scientific or medical test exists;

Whereas a federal lawsuit has been filed against a school and psychiatric facility by the Rutherford Institute on behalf of parents who did not give permission for their child to be subjected to the TeenScreen suicide survey which resulted in a false diagnosis of a mental disorder;

Whereas an epidemic already exists with children using psychiatric drugs and will further skyrocket if children are referred to psychiatrists after screening. According to a survey of recently trained child psychiatrists it was found that treatment for 9 out of 10 children consisted of prescription drugs (Journal of the American Academy of Child Adolescent Psychiatry 2002);

Whereas TeenScreen's leaders and advisory board members have ties to pharmaceutical companies and front groups for pharmaceutical companies;

Whereas antipsychotic drugs are not approved by the Food and Drug Administration for children; the FDA's "black box warning" states antidepressants increase the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior in children and adolescents with psychiatric disorders; and drug safety experts have recommended additional "black box" warnings be placed on ADHD drugs: for the increased risk of stroke and heart attack;

Whereas potential recruits are ineligible for military service if they have taken Ritalin and other stimulants to treat the unscientific "disorder" called ADHD in the previous year;

Whereas most states have laws restricting the purchase of firearms based on an adjudication of mental illnesses or disorders, and mass screening of all American children for mental disorders will increase the number of persons labeled with a mental disorder, directly infringing upon the citizenry's right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the 2nd amendment;

Whereas TeenScreen only partners with and seeks to immediately refer students to "mental illness" practitioners and does not refer students to medical disciplines that could test for underlying health problems such as allergies, nutrition, toxicities and physical illnesses;

Whereas child suicides are very rare and have been on a decline for years; and even according to former TeenScreen director Rob Caruano, "suicides are so rare that you'd have to screen the whole country to see a difference in mortality between screened and unscreened students.";

Whereas many and various groups, individuals and legislators across a spectrum of political, religious, scientific and common sense views are opposed to screening for mental disorders in schools;

Whereas TeenScreen is very secretive about their suicide survey and refuses to allow parents to obtain a copy and is also very secretive about which schools they've convinced to use their suicide survey;

Whereas the United States Preventive Services Task Force reported in May of

There is no evidence that screening for suicide risk reduces suicide

attempts or mortality,

There is limited evidence on the accuracy of screening tools to identify
suicide risk,

There is insufficient evidence that treatment of those at high risk reduces

suicide attempts or mortality;

Whereas Ned Calonge, the chairman of the United States Preventive Services Task Force, who is also the chief medical officer for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, was quoted in the June 16, 2006 Washington Post: "the panel would reach the same conclusion today... Whether or not we like to admit it, there are no interventions that have no harms... There is weak evidence that screening can distinguish people who will commit suicide from those who will not... And screening inevitably leads to treating some people who do not need it. Such interventions have consequences beyond side effects from drugs or other treatments... Unnecessary care drives up the cost of insurance, causing some people to lose coverage altogether.";

Whereas TeenScreen is an intrusion into the rearing of children and false psychiatric labels could embarrass students and cause turmoil at home;

Whereas many school districts have reservations about using TeenScreen because of liability and risk issues;

Whereas legislators in various states are proposing legislation to stop state and federal funding for screening of mental disorders in schools;

Whereas schools should be in the business of educating our children instead of probing each for unscientific mental disorders;

We, therefore, petition school board members and state and federal legislators to stop using the TeenScreen suicide survey and to adopt firm policy that will prevent the implementation of TeenScreen in the future.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Mid Kent Water Profits And Hosepipe Ban

Mid Kent Water posted a strong increase in first-half (2006) profits despite imposing a hosepipe ban and severe water restrictions on its customers during the summer drought of that year. Pre-tax profits rose by 14% to £5.5m for the six months to the end of September. The company just happens to be in the midst of a merger with neighbouring South East Water and is to be sold to Hastings, the Australian fund manager. Last month (November) it agreed to buy South East Water for £665m from its fellow Australian bank, Macquarie. Hastings Diversified Utilities Fund (HDUF) Hastings Funds Management Limited There seems to be some implied amazement that any profit is peculiar even though it is necessary to impose these restrictions. Water users pay their yearly account bills whether any ban is imposed or not. It seems more likely that profits should go up (by 14%?) since there is less outgoing, but an unchanged income. Spin?

Friday, December 08, 2006

A Voice In The Wilderness

Last night (7th December, 2006) on the BBC‘s Question Time there was a comment from a young woman in the audience responding to an item concerning the USA , UK and the Afghanistan, Iran and Iraq situation and how it has descended (predictably) into deeper chaos. It’s as though the politicians have just woken up to the fact that something should be done. The lone voice? Simply that she had alluded to the funding of a ‘poor nation’ by the USA and the ever meddling CIA. The true masters of terror? Audience reaction? Chairman reaction? Panel reaction?
Typically deaf and blind
  • A thinker among an audience of...
...well, isn't it obvious?