Wednesday, July 06, 2005
First of all, I was disappointed by the lack of public interest in seeing my exposed ass. I posted a few days ago that I'd be willing to share with my readers pictures of my American-flag-tattooed posterior if they would only shoot me an e-mail to express interest. I got one.
It's not that I expect any of my regular Bucketeers to be interested in seeing my naked ass. Truth be told, I'm not particularly thrilled about the idea of nude pictures of any of you either. A little too familiar, thanks. But when you consider that the #1 referral to my blog is still people looking for naked pictures of Brad Pitt, you'd think there would be some kind of crossover audience for my star-spangled heiney.
To the one person who did respond, I'm sorry, but I'm so disgusted that I'm calling it off. I have my pride. If I can't get a crowd clamoring for Pops nudity, then I'm taking my balls and going home.
I know these days Tom Cruise is an easy target. He rants, he screams, he jumps up and down like the rhesus monkey he is. See Tom explain! See Tom proselytize! See Tom scold! It's all so silly. And through it all, at bottom we all realize it's impossible to take a man seriously when we know he's wearing lifts.
Besides the outright crazy-crazy stuff, the conspiracy theories about his very public relationship as a beard to cover his homosexuality, he's mostly getting pilloried for wandering (stupidly and ill-advisedly) into the realm of conception, labor and childbirth, which in my experience is the shortest route to getting kicked in the nuts with a pointed shoe. It works almost as fast as "Hey baby, nice tits. How much you pay for those?"
Here's a thought I've been having, something I can't seem to shake and--because I used up all my good vomit material yesterday and I'm desperate for blog premises--I wanted to share with you, loyal readers:
What if Tom Cruise is right?
What if underneath that whole giant pile of obviously retarded Scientology wrongness about space aliens and bodies possessed by multiple misanthropic spirits and secret handshakes and Xenu and the whole thing they completely by accident are on to something with this whole anti-psychiatry thing, especially with regard to psychiatric drugs?
I'm not saying necessarily that I believe that to be the case. But consider the fact that neuroscience, for all its advances, is still in its infancy in all respects. I only know a couple of people who are on regular anti-depressant or anti-anxiety medication. They are constantly having their dosages and combinations altered and messed with. They're only anecdotal examples, but it seems like there's a great deal of trial-and-error going on with these drugs after they're prescribed, which seems somewhat backward to me.
The problem is that anti-depressants aren't antibiotics, where the scope of the drug's job is narrow and clearly defined and can be accomplished in a fixed dosage regimen where the benefits clearly outweigh the risks from side-effects. I think if asked, most people would prefer some achy joints and nausea to rampant infection, sepsis and death.
It's like the difference between the First and Second Gulf Wars. The First Gulf War was about clearing the Iraqi army out of Kuwait to the tune of a Lee Greenwood song and the roar of football stadium jet flyovers back home. This Second Gulf War is... um... well, we're not really, sure. We're just trying this, trying that... we're not really sure when we'll be done. Whenever Iraq decides it "feels better". Or at least tapers off on the self-mutilation.
For me the complicating factor is the pharmaceutical industry. The same way dedicated political interests have (in California anyway) completely bypassed the State Legislature by appealing directly to voters in the form of ballot initiatives (the California State Legislature's only remaining job now is to fight with governors over the budget every year) pharmaceuticals have run around the roadblock of doctors and prescriptions with heavy direct advertising to potential patients that promises to cure you of all your bad feelings, ever. That vague public awareness in addition to the financial pressure on doctors to promote one drug or another (the assortment drug-name-emblazoned tchochkes you see in doctors offices are astounding... I know I couldn't resist the allure of free pens and sun visors) compromises the whole enterprise.
This is of course completely separate from the lame, brainwash-y Scientology party-line about psychiatry being inextricably linked to Nazism. It's the trap you fall into when your propaganda was built in the early 1950s by a man embittered by the psychiatric establishment laughing at his touchy-feely Dianetics hooey. The last 60 years of pharmaceutical psychiatry is all-American, baby, with everything that entails, positive and negative.
And it's not like convention medical wisdom has never been wrong. Who else remembers thalidomide?
I know, I've never had post-partum depression so I have no idea what I'm talking about. And anything out of the mouth of Tom Cruise is suspect, I concede that as well. I guess what got me thinking about it was a quote by Tom's Scientology cohort Kelly Preston. She's married to John Travolta, so automatically I question her judgment a little bit as well, but she said this about the Brooke Shields thing:
"If you're going to be advocating drugs, which she does in her book, you need to be responsible for also telling the people of the potential risks."
Now I haven't read Brooke Shields' book (it's on my list right after I finish my Carol Channing unauthorized biography) so I don't know what she says or doesn't say about risks and side-effects. But I think that's a fairly sensible quote.
And NO, I'm not just siding with Kelly Preston because she has a nicer rack than Brooke Shields. Although it doesn't hurt her argument.
This post on the Narcissus Scale: 7.7
PS- Don't get all uppity and yell at me for saying I don't think drugs help people, because I do think drugs help people. I think keeping the psychotics all doped up is a really good thing, socially speaking.
PPS- I only included a link to an anti-Scientology site. In fairness, I am including a link to their official site so you can get the information with a whole different color of varnish. The frustrated journalist in me demands that I let the goofy fuckers have their own say.