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Dr. Cruise Lectures Lauer

(AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

High school dropout Tom Cruise pulled his Scientology obsessed, crazy train into New York this morning - his zombie virgin fiancee in tow - to grace Today show viewers with his his mastery of psychiatry...

Cruise: No, you see. Here's the problem. You don't know the history of psychiatry. I do.

Lauer: Aren't there examples, and might not Brooke Shields be an example, of someone who benefited from one of those drugs?

Cruise: All it does is mask the problem, Matt. And if you understand the history of it, it masks the problem. That's what it does. That's all it does. You're not getting to the reason why. There is no such thing as a chemical imbalance.

Lauer: So, postpartum depression to you is kind of a little psychological gobbledygook --

Cruise: No. I did not say that.

Lauer: I'm just asking what you, what would you call it?

Cruise: No. No. Abso -- Matt, now you're talking about two different things.

Lauer: But that's what she went on the antidepressant for.

Cruise: But what happens, the antidepressant, all it does is mask the problem. There's ways, [with] vitamins and through exercise and various things... I'm not saying that that isn't real. That's not what I'm saying. That's an alteration of what I'm saying. I'm saying that drugs aren't the answer, these drugs are very dangerous. They're mind-altering, antipsychotic drugs. And there are ways of doing it without that so that we don't end up in a brave new world. The thing that I'm saying about Brooke is that there's misinformation, okay. And she doesn't understand the history of psychiatry. She doesn't understand in the same way that you don't understand it, Matt.

Al Roker, of all people, thumps Cruise on the Today Show blog (proof that blogs are now in dangerous, Shark-jumping territory), Inside the Green Room.
You're an actor, not a med student. But the best part about being American is that you can say whatever the heck you want in this country, as loopy and as goofy as it might sound.


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Comments (71)

I have to admit, as much a ... (Below threshold)

I have to admit, as much a whackjob I think cruise is, I dont really agree with the prescribing of mind altering drugs in most cases to treat children.

He's a fruit cake, but I ag... (Below threshold)
Josh Davenport:

He's a fruit cake, but I agree with this:

"They're mind-altering, antipsychotic drugs. And there are ways of doing it without that so that we don't end up in a brave new world."

When such a large portion of schoolchildren are on ritalin, so that they can deal with the school system, it masks the schools (and parents, I believe) problems.

If the system doesn't work for human's, then the system is out of wack. Doesn't mean there are not legitimate uses for these drugs, but that they are over prescribed, and helping to mask underling problems.

He can say whatever he want... (Below threshold)
Rodney Dill:

He can say whatever he wants to. His loopy jawing only hurts his own image.

Drugging kids to alter thei... (Below threshold)
Steve L.:

Drugging kids to alter their behavior is wrong. It is the asy way out. "Give 'em a pill and they'll leave you alone" does the kids a great disservice. Additionally, it teaches them at an early age to pop a pill if you don't feel right. When they get older, how are we supposed to teach them to differentiate between "good" drugs and "bad" ones?

You guys are talking about ... (Below threshold)

You guys are talking about kids and what you say is right about the over-prescribing to kids. But Cruise is talking about an adult who is experiencing a specific chemical imbalance that can be correct with temporary medication. Apples and oranges.

It's too bad that a reasona... (Below threshold)

It's too bad that a reasonable message like "there are other ways to deal with psychological issues than just by popping pills" gets lost in the El Ronner babble. What, pray, does the history of psychology have to do with Brooke Sheilds' body chemistry? Sure, they've been aiming for the quick fix all too often. Yeah, the lying-on-the-couch schtick isn't the other half of the formula, especially with post-partum issues. But if Tommy boy is suggesting that Brooke and thousands like her can think themselves well, he's really going to hit bottom when his body starts to age and reality sets in.

Dr. Tom Cruise? Nah... wha... (Below threshold)

Dr. Tom Cruise? Nah... what an idiot.

The Proper follow-up questi... (Below threshold)

The Proper follow-up question for Laurer might have been: "Tom, whose research did you read regarding psychiatry?"

Seems to me the Scientology [cult] is itself against psychiatry.

This would be a case of working from biased data?

Scientology wants it both w... (Below threshold)

Scientology wants it both ways. They want to attack psychiatric practice--ALL of it, not just its weaknesses--as unscientific and unproven. When challenged on the details, they retreat and claim you're slandering their "religion."

I wonder if Cruise did "War... (Below threshold)

I wonder if Cruise did "War of the Worlds" thinking Speilberg might help him get just that much closer to getting on one of L.Ron Hubbard's ships.

No chemical imbalances? How does he explain liberals then? LOL

I hope Cruise's publicist g... (Below threshold)

I hope Cruise's publicist gets over time pay.

Jen nailed it. What does m... (Below threshold)

Jen nailed it. What does medication for children have to do with Brooke Shield's treatment for postpartum depression?
It worked for her and she is happier for it. "Dr. Nutjob" bashes her for making her own treatment choices--what arrogance
He can't be shocked if the public now bash him for being an arrogant, misinformed, condescending actor. Not a trained physician---he's just a movie actor.

To "Dr. Cruise", high schoo... (Below threshold)
Dr. T:

To "Dr. Cruise", high school dropout and actor
From Dr. E, behavioral neuroscientist
As you well know as you are omnipotent regarding the world of psychiatry, methylphenidate, or Ritalin, is a mild CNS stimulant and not an antipsychotic psychotropic drug. Please stick to your career choice. As far as Brooke Shields, from a professional standpoint I believe it was a brave thing for her to make public her postpartum depression. This disorder affects 10-15% of pregnant women and her courage to step forward will only help to normalize instead of stigmatize this disorder.

Here's a question I have fo... (Below threshold)

Here's a question I have for the UnDr. Cruise, is Scientology the religion/pseudo-science of Arrogant Celebrities, or just Idiots? Or am I repeating myself. I think that if (and that's a big if) Cruise is factually representing the poisition of Scientology Church- Cult- Anti- Psychiatric Advocacy Group, then perhaps the debate ought to be in an academic forum, say a dozen Celebrieties with Scientology training vs a dozen Psychiatrists and Neurosurgeons. Televise it, and let the American people judge, but also let it be reviewed by JAMA and other pier review journals. For now he's sleep-taking, too many loose engrams if you ask me, maybe he needs some shock therapy to clear up his thetan. My advice to Cruise, if you want to be treated seriosuly don't try to win arguments by being clever and using ideolocal rhetoric, rather cite objective reserach, and use intelligence and logic.

I love how "Dr." Tom says h... (Below threshold)

I love how "Dr." Tom says he has studied psychiatry but did not offer any information, statistics, etc to back up his statement (s).

And he assumed that Matt is some sort of dummy.....

I think we know who the dummy is.

Would somebpdy in the media... (Below threshold)

Would somebpdy in the media PLEASE ask Cruise in an interview about the sould of those space aliens that he thinks lives inside of him! Please! I'm dying to see the reaction.

Here's a question I have fo... (Below threshold)

Here's a question I have for the UnDr. Cruise, is Scientology the religion/pseudo-science of Arrogant Celebrities, or just Idiots? Or am I repeating myself. I think that if (and that's a big if) Cruise is factually representing the position of Scientology Church- Cult- Anti- Psychiatric Advocacy Group, then perhaps the debate ought to be in an academic forum, say a dozen Celebrities with Scientology training vs a dozen Psychiatrists and Neurosurgeons. Televise it, and let the American people judge, but also let it be reviewed by JAMA and other pier review journals. For now he's sleep-taking, too many loose engrams if you ask me, maybe he needs some shock therapy to clear up his thetan. My advice to Cruise, if you want to be treated seriously don't try to win arguments by being clever and using ideological rhetoric, rather cite objective research, and use intelligence and logic.

Duoh!, Make that "Would so... (Below threshold)

Duoh!, Make that "Would somebody" and "souls of those". I hate posting with low blood sugar!

I love how "Dr." Tom say... (Below threshold)

I love how "Dr." Tom says he has studied psychiatry

Actually, he says he studied the history of psychiatry. Sheesh. If I study the history of physics (rather than, say, actually studying the topic of physics), do you think I can go around bashing physists and the laws of physics?

Come on people! I want to h... (Below threshold)

Come on people! I want to hear about "War of the Worlds." I like Tom Cruise and Steven Speilberg as filmmakers. What they do outside of that is of no concern to me whatsoever!
Besides Matt Lauer only wants to ask the controversial questions. Why don't someone ask him about his recent private life? It would all get quiet then.
Tom was on "David Letterman" and that was fun getting to know about this scary movie "War of the Worlds."

The guy is getting kindve s... (Below threshold)
james Ferraro:

The guy is getting kindve scarey.
If I wan Matt, I wouldve handed him the mic, and walked off
the stage, and said "Tom, please, go ahead and continue to make a fool out of yourself, Im going to stand over there so you cant try to direct it at me."

Freakin cult member, thats what hes become.

As a mother of two who has ... (Below threshold)

As a mother of two who has suffered the terrible effects of post-partum depression....Dr. Tom will never get $10 for a movie ticket from me again! How dare he judge me and the thousands of other women who chose to take temporary action against this debilitating condition. The drugs I took allowed me to better care for my children AND MYSELF. He doesn't have a clue...not only about psychiatry but also what impact his comments will have on his majority-female fan base! Kudos to Matt Lauer for exposing Tom for what he really is...an arrogant whackjob!

Tom Cruise is only proving ... (Below threshold)

Tom Cruise is only proving to the world how much of a loony he really is. The dude is merely trying to sell the world his brand of kool aid...problem is, his kool aid is full of loony juice. Loonies thrive in his (ahem) religion...Kirsie Alley...John Travolta...Jenna Elfman...and a whole stream of forgettable actors...LOONIES!...It just goes to show how 'intelligent' some movie stars are. Don't get me wrong - I LOVE GOING TO SEE A GOOD MOVIE!...it's entertainment...Heck, I still love watching Top Gun...it's entertaining...but the moment ANY of them try to pawn themselves off as truly intelligent members of our society, they have to be able to back it up...Scientology is a big red flag that points to LOONEYVILLE...therefore, taking away a good deal of your credibility away....this is NOT to say, that no loonies exist in other religions....but if you look at the roster of loonies in the (ahem) religion to which he subscribes...well, it doesn't take a 'Dr. Tom Cruise' to figure that on out...!

And let's not forget that his little tart du jour is nothing more than a beard for his own personal (ahem) 'preferences.'....L Ron Hubbard Bless Him, he's just a movie star...!

Quote: "Come on people! I w... (Below threshold)

Quote: "Come on people! I want to hear about "War of the Worlds." I like Tom Cruise and Steven Speilberg as filmmakers. What they do outside of that is of no concern to me whatsoever!"

Well, unfortunately Roscoe, when someone voices clearly ignorant opinions such as Tom Cruise did to the national & international media thus causing it to trickle down to the general populous, people will have opinions. Media conglomerates know that people want to hear his reasoning on those previously expressed opnions as we have opnions on his opnions. If you'd like to hear more about the movie, read a review the day it comes out. I personally like hearing him rant about that which he has no knowledge; it gives the office a good laugh.

The raw, almost comical arr... (Below threshold)
Brent Norman:

The raw, almost comical arrogance that Mr. Cruise put on display during his "Today" interview seems to show that maybe Tom is either blinded by his religion, or his apparent massive ego.

I am a parent of a child who suffers from ADHD, and although we have spent years trying many approaches with with several psycologists, the ONLY thing that allows my son to conduct a normal life at school and home is Ritalin.

Of course, I want my son off the drug as soon as possible, but right now his neurons need the connection that only Ritilan can provide.

For Mr. Cruise to ridicule the way my wife (who IS a licensed Physician, BTW) and I treat our child's disability is rude and ignorant.

I'm afraid Tom came off as ... (Below threshold)
Moon Monkey:

I'm afraid Tom came off as a psuedo-intellect with not-so-intelligent grounding. His attitude was that of one who suffers from an inferiority complex,who just discovered that it wasn't a complex after all! Get my drift?
Those who saw the programming were treated to one of those rare moments where an individual of celebrity standing exposed himself as he really is. If he wasn't so absurdly pompous I would almost consider him "scary"!

actually, tom cruise had a ... (Below threshold)

actually, tom cruise had a good point (despite the fact that scientology is retarded and he is a nutjob.) we give people people stimulants, depressants, and neurotransmitter blockers (antidepressants like prozac) which completely bypass all of the mechanisms we have developed over millions of years of evolution. exercise is a way of pushing the body to regulate and fix itself which is vastly underprescribed. drugs are a short term solution which often come with long term effects and are vastly overprescribed. our national addiction to psychotropic drugs cannot be healthy in the longrun and i'm glad someone said this on national t.v. (drug lobbyists ensure that this doesn't happen in any regular or organized fashion). but i do agree that tom cruise is not qualified to talk about this and seems to be something of a nutjob.

This pissed me off because ... (Below threshold)

This pissed me off because I was treated with Ritalin when I was younger (from 11 to 16). My parents and I did all the research we possibly could and decided that Ritalin would be worth a try (worth the side-effects!) because I was terribly disruptive due to a very short attention span. My parents had tried everything to help me concentrate, since I was tiny, but nothing had worked. During my time on Ritalin, I certainly didn't turn into a zombie or anything: on the contrary, I thrived and made many friends for the first time in my life. I was popular and outgoing.

The majority of parents who allow their children to take medication have made an informed decision to do what they feel is best for their child at that time. It's not that they are taking the easy way out - deciding your child probably needs medication has got to be difficult in itself! Tom Cruise is a brainwashed moron.

(I left school with As and A*s in my exams. And, BTW, is HG Wells going to get any credit for War of the Worlds?)

I lost all respect for Tom ... (Below threshold)

I lost all respect for Tom Cruise. He has no idea what he is talking about, but yet he acts like an arrogant expert. My favorite part of the interview is when Matt says "But a little bit what you're saying Tom is, you say you want people to do well. But you want them do to well by taking the road that you approve of, as opposed to a road that may work for them." Tom doesn't know how to respond and then plays into this by continuing to say that he disagrees with Brooke Shields. I would have to say that Matt Lauer was fair with Tom Cruise, he didnt go after the obvious lies of scientology such as Xenu and harmful body thetans planted in us by aliens. After reading about Scientology I have decided that it would be more fitting if it were renamed Science Fictionology.

With regard to Brent Norman... (Below threshold)

With regard to Brent Norman:

"For Mr. Cruise to ridicule the way my wife (who IS a licensed Physician, BTW) and I treat our child's disability is rude and ignorant."

I don't believe that he did, but I will:
It is rediculous to hook your child on speed. As things stand, ADHD is an almost anecdotal diagnosis, based on inability to conform to manufactured situations. Doesn't it seem odd that students are made to sit in one place most of the day for much of their childhood. There is nothing about our biology nor evolution which suggests that the ability to do this is normal (or that the inability to do it is pathological). The concept of we would call a "normal life at school" in today's society is rediculous, and the fact that people must be drugged to conform to it is also rediculous. Please don't be sanctimonious about your wife being a physician. Two of the things that I learned while in medical school were that most med students take the dogma fed them and that its much easier to get someone to take a pill than it is to get them to change their behavior for meaningful, lasting health.
Shoveling speed into your son's mouth on a daily basis is something that people should be ridiculed for.

In response to "kjm"<... (Below threshold)
Brent Norman:

In response to "kjm"

I'm sorry you feel that it is "rediculous" (sic) for me to treat my child as I see fit - and of course we would not advocate Ritilan except as a treatment of last choice. My son had years of therapy with several professionals before we made the hard choice to pursue Ritilan as a treatment.

Bottom line - my son is now able to enjoy his life without the neurological"short-circuits" that used to torture him. With time and other non-drug treatment methods, we see his need for the drug slowly diminishing.

I DO NOT endorse Ritilan or any other drug, but in our case, it has worked. As I wrote of Mr. Cruise, please do not criticize us until you have lived a day in our lives.

In response to Brent Norman... (Below threshold)

In response to Brent Norman-
You are in fact endorsing Ritalin (speed) by posting of your family's usage of it here. In my opinion, these "short-circuits" you describe (hyperactivity and excitability for most ADHD diagnoses) are aspects of normal people's personalities. There is normal variability in human temperament, and to treat one side of the spectrum as pathological is not, in my opinion, humane. You say that it has worked for you, but you are not the one taking speed every day. Long term use (particularly in children) may lead to cardiomyopathies and vascular problems.
My living a day in your life is irrelevant to discussion. I believe that the argument I made before still stands: Our use of these drugs in society are an indication of a sick society, not of sick individuals. We need to work at ways of modifying how individuals interact with society rather than drugging people into societal conformity.

WWXDWhat would Xen... (Below threshold)


What would Xenu do?

He's a fruit cake, but I... (Below threshold)

He's a fruit cake, but I agree with this:

"They're mind-altering, antipsychotic drugs. And there are ways of doing it without that so that we don't end up in a brave new world."

"They"? What's "they"? All psychiatric meds?

First of all, anti-psychotic meds are specific for psychosis not depression. Thanks to newer meds millions of schizophrenics world-wide are functioning again rather than living their lives in institutions. Schizophrenia effects 1 in every 100 persons. You really think vitamins are an alternative when you have chronic auditory hallucinations, cognitive impairment and delusional ideation? We understand the role of neurotransmitters now in the medical model of mental illness. The Dark Ages are over.

Mental illness is a "mind altering" situation. Thank God that psychiatry via modern pharmacology is correcting chemical imbalances in diseases that destroyed lives and families.

Penny.....a psych nurse

All I learned from this int... (Below threshold)

All I learned from this interview is that Mr Cruise is a either a narrowminded, ignorant man or he is in need of a serious psychological assessment. I hope he never has to witness firsthand the devastating effects that a mental or physical illness brings upon the sufferer or his family. Money and love will not cure a severe illness; only trained medical doctors and other medical professionals can. Sometimes drugs are the only way to help.

I would not be surprised if... (Below threshold)

I would not be surprised if you hear something in the next few days of an apology as I think he has hurt the chances of this movie becoming a success as predicted. Between his teenager actions on his "who cares" love life and his pseudo doctorial degree, he is hurting this movie before it even comes out. I would expect to see low numbers. I can understand overuse of antidepressants in children and adults as i think it is a problem and they are not prescribed properly with the right guidance, but to be so arrogant as for a high school dropout to say he studied psychiatry and to make these bold statements is very arrogant. Movie stars are just that, but their arrogance takes over and for some reason they think because they make movies they are the superiors in politics and medical science. I think we can all see why it didn't work out with Nicole, she was to mature for him.

In response to kjm -... (Below threshold)

In response to kjm -
"You are in fact endorsing Ritalin (speed) ..."

Ritalin (methylphenidate) is not speed (amphetamine), do not exaggerate. Like TC, you might consider learning a little before expressing such hurtful opinions.

I can't judge Tom Cruise or... (Below threshold)

I can't judge Tom Cruise or Scientology on the little bit I've seen online, but regardless of one's beliefs (I am a Christian), we should always speak them in patience, confidence and love -- not arrogance ("I know this, you don't") and condescension ("Matt, Matt, Matt"...translation: Matt, you poor dumb slob.)

While I also agree that most of America is over-medicated, we should not make blanket statements. Each individual situation is just that: individual. For Cruise to say he "cares" about Brooke Sheilds and then criticize her publicly is a crock. If he really cared, and wanted to share his beliefs, he should've done so privately with her and let it be.

If he was always this arrogant, I'm wondering what Nicole Kidman was so broken up about....

Dictor Cruise (and Scientol... (Below threshold)

Dictor Cruise (and Scientologists?) seem to think, for some miraculous reason, the brain is the only organ in the body which is not subject to bona fide illness. (Was Rain Man faking it? And what of epilepsy, mental retardation, etc.?) Such ignorance contributes to the continued stigma associated with mental illness and keep people from seeking treatment, viewing their (or their family member's) condition as some sort of weakness or as something which doesn't actually exist. No one, not even Scientologists I presume, expect people with heart disease, diabetes, liver disease, osteoporosis, or even cancer, to "pull themselves up by their own bootstraps." Sure, maybe exercise and vitamins would or could have contributed toward a healthier profile for anyone suffering from ANY illness of the body. But when someone is suffering acutely (and mental illness is one of the most potentially deadly illnesses there is), one does not ethically refuse them the available treatments which are proven to be of greatest help at that point in time. Of course, as an adjunct to treatment, in almost ANY illness, a good clinician would prescribe things such as exercise and proper nutrition, social support, etc. Tom Cruise, in my opinion, is a blowhard and an idiot. It is a shame that people look toward celebrities for guidance, but sadly that seems to be the state of the world in which we currently live. Therefore, I feel Cruise is a destructive force to those (or caregivers of those) who may need help, yet take his words to heart. To be honest, it seems to me that Cruise himself could likely benefit from professional (e.g., medical/psychiatric) help, sooner than later. (Or perhaps he could get his GED, complete four years of undergraduate study, apply to graduate school or med school, and then continue to educate the rest of the world, whom he seems to believe is much less enlightened than himself.)

I may not agree with many t... (Below threshold)

I may not agree with many things that Tom does, but these drugs that he is talking about have destroyed thousands of lives. It's time we wake up. Did all you also know that the World Health Organization says that 1 out of every 3 diseases and disorders are Doctor induced? Did you know that the American Medical Assn. listed the numbers and when totaled it made our medical system the leading cause of death in America.

What do you do with the facts? The media burys them. How about you? Will you bury the facts to?

You can bury the facts but they don't go away.

I'd love to see Cruise's 'b... (Below threshold)

I'd love to see Cruise's 'bibliography' of all the readings he bases his opinions of psychiatry on. I'm willing to bet they're all written by L. Ron or other Scientologists. This guy is an arrogant moron. Why do I get the feeling that the reason he seemed particularly upset about Ritalin might be because he looks like someone who could use some? He's a high school drop-out adrenaline junkie actor. Since his sister (also a Scientologist) is now his manager, I don't think any of this will bother her.

My $.02. Ritalin ... (Below threshold)

My $.02.

Ritalin is not the only drug used in all cases for ADD/ADHD. There are alternatives that are non-mood enhancing such as Straterra. I myself suffer from ADD and have since birth and I need medication to slow my brain down enough to study anything longer than 5 minutes. I used Straterra before but had to move to welbutryn (sp?) because of some inconvienient side effects.

It is a multifaceted issue, obviously there will be kids diagnosed by parents/tecachers who want to control the kid better. Sometimes it will be a learning style issue.

anyways, just my thoughts

Geez kjm, ya think the brai... (Below threshold)

Geez kjm, ya think the brain is all software and not hardware.

Sometimes the hardware glitches (schzophrenia, ADD, ADHD, bi-polar, clinical depression ,etc). I would no more deny a chemical fix to someone with such problems then I'd deny a pair of glasses to a nearsighted person and tell 'em it's just a matter of vitamins and exercise... "you effing wimp! you could really see the blackboard if you wanted to!!"

Has there been an over diagnosis of ADD ADHD? Most likely, but don't think it never existed or doesn't exist -- along with learning problems that are as hardwired as nearsightedness.

Pull that moralistic stick out of your ass.

This guy is a narcissistic ... (Below threshold)

This guy is a narcissistic whack job, destined IMHO to go off the tracks as much as Howard Hughers and Jacko. He makes my flesh crawl. While he's been in a few good movies, soooo many others have been laughable, viz. "The Last Samurai." I think as much of his acting as I do of his intelligence. Get the hook!

There is no way kjm is a do... (Below threshold)

There is no way kjm is a doctor. At least, not in the developed world. In fact, after comments such as:

"despite the fact that scientology is retarded and he is a nutjob"

"Shoveling speed into your son's mouth "

I'm wondering if kjm's even an adult.

in response to gavin:... (Below threshold)

in response to gavin:
"Ritalin (methylphenidate) is not speed (amphetamine), do not exaggerate. Like TC, you might consider learning a little before expressing such hurtful opinions."
speed is often cut with ritalin, caffeine, and any other stimulant the maker can add to it. i actually have learned quite a bit about these drugs in both medical school and graduate school in neuroscience (whether i "might consider" learning a little more is certainly a matter of contention, but i am certainly qualified to discuss such things). while methamphetamine does cause presynaptic norepi release in addition to its dopamine reuptake inhibition (the mechanism of methylphenidate), saying that methylphenidate is speed is no gross eggageration.

in response to darleen:
please read what i've written in my previous posts. there is nothing moralistic about the claim that our society is treating people of certain temperament as if they must be medicated to integrate. proper exercise, eating and sleep can go a long way towards helping with both hyperactivity and as you mention, bipolar/depression. this is true because these things activate endogenous feedback and regulation ("hardware" things) in your body than blanket pharmacology. i just do not feel that our society accomodates different temperaments healthy ways- blanket psychotropic treatments are just not appropriate in many of the cases they are implemented in.

penny's suggestion that "We understand the role of neurotransmitters now in the medical model of mental illness." is inaccurate. we do not understand the subtleties of neurotransmitters in cognition, and throwing drugs which act on all neurons mediated by a given neurotransmitter is, in many ways, a "dark ages" approach.

as for schizophrenia, that is a different matter entirely, and pharmacological intervention is most certainly indicated, but in that instance, there is a very clear pathology with little in the way of non-pharmacological alternatives. the typical and atypical antipsychotics are life-saving medications with very clear indication, but any discussion of them should be distinct from those used for "adhd" and "bipolar/depression".
and, btw darleen, i'll pull the moralistic stick out so you can suck on it.

actually kjm, hand the stic... (Below threshold)

actually kjm, hand the stick to me and I'll gladly beat you about the head and shoulders

Not one person here has disputed that drugs have been over prescribed...(and I'd include antibiotics too) however you've decided to come on and charge people with "shoveling speed into your kid mouth" with the arrogance and sanctimony of a teenager who thinks s/he has invented sex.

Some people can be helped without drugs, others cannot. So it is a matter of careful and correct diagnosis and appropriate treatment, not one of impugning the moral worth of all those who "fall short" and actually need drugs to function.

Geez, what a bedside matter. I'm sure you're a hit at cocktail parties with the "shoveling speed" schtick, too.

Well...we no longer have wh... (Below threshold)

Well...we no longer have whako jako, but now we've got dr. cruise. lauer baited him on purpose to expose the idiot that cruise really is. good job matt.

"First of all, anti-psychot... (Below threshold)
Josh Davenport:

"First of all, anti-psychotic meds are specific for psychosis not depression. Thanks to newer meds millions of schizophrenics world-wide are functioning again rather than living their lives in institutions.

Penny.....a psych nurse

Posted by: penny at June 24, 2005 07:03 PM"

OK, I painted with an overly broad brush in my post. I also can respect parents that try hard and end up giving stimulants to help with ADD/ ADHD. I am not against modern medicine or pharmacology in general.

However, as a biologist, an individual diagnosed with ADD, with a wife who is a teacher, and a member of AA, I have seen first hand the destructive force of over prescribing.

My add was managable while I was playing sports. In college, after I didn't make the team, I started having problems and went on ritalin. It helped. It was not until years later that I found I got equal benefit from vigorous exercise.

I do not consider ADD to be a disorder (under most diagnoses). It is a normative brain pattern.

In AA, I here stories ALL THE TIME of alcoholics going to shrinks - and having been told that they are alcoholics - the shrinks STILL recommend valium. This is 40 years after valium and alcohol synergistics was recognized.

Doctors are prescribing anti-psychotics for depression.

School's are suggesting ritalin for every kid with a lot of energy that the teachers are sick of dealing with. At the same time, their ability to discipline children is greatly diminished.

Hmm, kinda obvious that jus... (Below threshold)

Hmm, kinda obvious that just like there are wacko actors there are wacko doctors. Remember Kevorkian and Mengele? Just cause you took the training and can speak the lingo doesn't mean you are competent. The mistypings and -spellings, as well as the manner your ideas are presented, suggest a certain flight of ideas and lack of insight that might fall somewhere between Narcissic Personality Disorder and Bipolar/Manic Phase kjm. Have you stopped taking your medication again?

And Josh, just 'cause you'v... (Below threshold)

And Josh, just 'cause you've had experience with a disorder, or with bad docs, doesn't mean all of modern medicine is bad. Yes, there are all the bad things you speak of going on, but yes, there are plenty of good doctors, and well managed medical therapies that help people.

Patients are not totally dependant serfs under the autocratic rule of their physicians. In this day and age, you can get information from your primary care doc, or find a new one who can do so, as well as get second opinions from physicians or other providers, search the [gasp] library if not the internet for reliable information, and make your own decisions on how to manage problems with health and well being. Figuring out how to separate the wheat from the chaff can be vexing, but it can be done.

If you have the motivation and attention span to do so.

I can't think of many sane docs that don't promote a healthy diet, exercise routine and adequate sleep hygeine to any patient when they also prescribe medication.

However, the fact that most of our society is suffering from poor nutrition, lack of exercise, and is sleep deprived is explanation enough for the social and economic malaise we endure in our free society.

Eat a diet balanced in nutrients and varied [while avoiding toxins such as tobacco and alcohol], drink plenty of water, exercise your heart and muscles daily, and sleep about 8-8 1/2 hours a day, and whatever meds you take or don't take you'll do better. Attention to your spiritual self, be it old fashioned religion or new aged balderdash, is also an important to your health and well being.

Watching Tom Cruise or reading troll trash isn't.

Where are all the scientist... (Below threshold)

Where are all the scientists in Scientology???
How come it's nothing but "entertainers"?
If Scientology is so scientific, bring out all the scientists who can show empirical data as to how alien souls got trapped in our bodies in the first place, and how Scientology fixes the problem.

L. Ron Hubbard was a science fiction writer. He was also a very intelligent con-man. But he was no scientist.

"Posted by: epador at June ... (Below threshold)
Josh Davenport:

"Posted by: epador at June 25, 2005 11:25 AM
just 'cause you've had experience with a disorder, or with bad docs, doesn't mean all of modern medicine is bad."

Um, I said "OK, I painted with an overly broad brush in my post. I also can respect parents that try hard and end up giving stimulants to help with ADD/ ADHD. I am not against modern medicine or pharmacology in general"

So why the accusation? I said the same thing.

You said:
"Figuring out how to separate the wheat from the chaff can be vexing, but it can be done.

If you have the motivation and attention span to do so."

Is that an insult? I'll assume its not. I am for individual freedom. I was merely pointing out what I believe to be a systemic inbalance, an over emphasis in the value of these drugs

How am I troll trash for saying that?

"just 'cause you've had experience with a disorder"
What disorder is that? That I need excercise to function well? Its exactly what you just said. Or are you refering to the AA? Is it a disorder that my brain chemistry has a tendency to become dependent more easily than some? Or have I taken care of myself by noticing the problem and dealing with it?

I moderated my statement and I'm a troll for doing it?
I'm really not impressed with your post. I think you are the troll.

TOM CRUISE GREAT ACTOR BUT... (Below threshold)

I always suspected that there was something SCREWY with Tom Cruise. Now it has been confirmed!
(Lucky Nicole got OUT OF THE MARRIAGE ..and thank god spanish hottie Penelope seen through his BULLSHIT too!)
Katie Holmes is no dummy, she will catch on but hopefully before she has kids with this jerk!

I agree with Andra about ea... (Below threshold)

I agree with Andra about each case being individual. The number of kids on Ritalin does seem to indicate that perhaps there are some for whom dispensing pills is easier than actual parenting. BUT there are also many kids (and adults) who simply cannot function properly without medication and who is Tom Cruise or anyone else among us to make a blanket judgment like that? Maybe if he were able to get a woman pregnant and have to deal with watching her go through PPD he'd have a little more compassion. I have never been able to stand him, I have always thought he was an arrogant nutjob and a horrible actor, now I can add raging idiot to the list. Supposedly his own extra weird behavior is reportedly the result of coming off of ADD meds. Maybe that explains the sudden zealousness? I really hope he kills his career with this BS, I am so sick of seeing and hearing him. BTW, a friend was telling me about a show she saw that said Hubbard never meant for Scientology to be taken seriously, he just wanted to see if he could start a religion since people believe all kinds of nutty things, and it just took off. Has anyone else heard whether that is true or not?

Tom Cruise = Nut Job!... (Below threshold)
Adrian James:

Tom Cruise = Nut Job!

Katie Holmes = Blow Job!

Tom Cruise + Katie Holmes = A Nutty Blow Job!

Crazy Couples!

If high-school dropout Tom ... (Below threshold)

If high-school dropout Tom wants to play the knowledge game with Brooke Shields it would do him well to remember that she graduated from Princeton.

Dr. Cruise seems to be havi... (Below threshold)

Dr. Cruise seems to be having a bit of a manic episode recently. Grandiosity, extreme moods, the burst of energy, lack of control, pressured speech, lack of insight/judgment, and other behavioral cues.

He claims no such thing as a chemical imbalance can exist. I'd like to see him attempt to exlpain the hard science, backed by hundreds of studies if not thousands, regarding dopamine and seratonin levels in the brain. These two brain chemicals, when at abnormal -imbalanced - levels, yield depression. When levels are brought back to normal, depression subsides.

As a 20+ year Scientologist, Cruise only has access to Scientology-approved texts about anything related to Scientology (including psychiatry). Anything promoting opposing views is strictly prohibited for "good" Scientologists. As a "good" Christian, Hindu or Jew, I'd be free to read anything I'd care to about my religion, regardless of whether the material promotes it or is harshly critical of it. Scientologists (and members of some other religious groups) do not have that latitude. As a result, all Cruise has been permitted to read about psychiatry for the last 20+ years is Scientology's official "party line" on psychiatry, which is filled with misinformation, much of it being debunked in some press reports of his exchanges with reporters (Carl Jung, for example, was never an editor at a Nazi paper; Morphine was not originally called Adolphine for Adolph Hitler.)

Indeed, as one of Scientology's highest profile practitioners in the world, and as one who has testified before the US Congress on behalf of the group, he's a commodity who is probably more indoctrinated in the group's core positions - especially PR positions, than the "average" Scientologist.

He believes he's right because it's all he's been fed through his entire adult life. It doesn't make it right, but he's surrounded with either people who think alike, or people who won't say 'no' to him so, from his perspective, it's the general public that's painfully misinformed and doesn't understand.

In the clip I saw of the Matt Lauer interview, he seemed like a character in a movie of some kind of whistelblower no one understands, all alone and frustrated, trying to convince a stubborn, ignorant supervisor/boss/decision maker that he's going to ruin everyone's lives if he doesn't agree with him NOW. The fact that Lauer had an opinion and anecdotal evidence was just not acceptable. Cruise was not open for a discussion. He needed control of the situation, and to convert Lauer to simple and immediate agreement on the spot. He grew increasingly anxious and aggressive as that failed to happen, and you could see that increase over seconds. He appeared to be physically agitated. And dare I say it... in serious need of an Ativan. Or two.

I feel sorry for Katie Holmes.

What " - " wrote (^^). And... (Below threshold)

What " - " wrote (^^). And, yeah, I feel sympathy for Katie Holmes, too, who seems to have fallen victim to sensations and the misleading influences of her ongoing obsession. Unfortunately, without any ballast, it's simple at her younger age to assume that that is "love." It isn't. Holmes will be "amazing" (her word) as long as Cruise remains "amazing."

Further definitions can be disillusioning, and even destructive for some.

Here's a little insight int... (Below threshold)

Here's a little insight into Tom's own mental state. It's from a piece on radaronline.com. And, no, I am not making this up.

The starry-eyed chaperone who’s been accompanying Katie Holmes to Batman Begins press junkets is not only an agent of Scientology—she’s a powerful one. According to an article from the sect’s in-house magazine, Source, Holmes’ new Church-assigned handler, Jessica Rodriguez, ascended to the level of “New Operating Thetan IV” (Tom Cruise is rumored to be New Operating Thetan VII) in January 2004. What the Heck does that mean?
According to sources close to the Church, it means she’s joined the elite group of Scientologists who’ve been enlightened with the six-figure secrets of Xenu, the evil intergalactic ruler who implanted “thetans,” or alien spirits, in earth’s volcanoes 75 million years ago, after which they escaped and invaded human bodies. As a “New OT IV,” Rodriguez has the power to, “control life, thought, matter, energy, space, and time,” according to Scientology’s official web site. Having completed the Church’s “False Purpose Rundown,” Katie’s spiritual escort also has the ability to spot any “suppressive persons” (read: enemies of Scientology, like skeptical journalists and concerned friends and family members) who interact with her celebrity charge.

Yep. According to Scientology's website, this woman "has the power to, “control life, thought, matter, energy, space, and time....”" And Tom Cruise is two levels higher than she is. Who knows what he thinks he can control.

Does anybody honestly believe ANYONE has the power to control life, thought, matter, energy, space and time beyond their own? AND if YOU said this with a straight face, wouldn't it sound psychotic?

Throwing drugs at problems indiscrimately is no solution, but neither is throwing aliens at them. Common sense and a considered diagnosis is essential.

Consider this : General Practioners are bombarded by drug reps sent by manufacturers to pitch their prescription drugs, often in a misleading fashion. OxyContin is an excellent example, unfortunately - this drug, made for severe pain such as that in end-stage cancer, was marketed to general practitioners who were not especially conversant with extra-strong pain meds as being for mild to moderate pain. Additionally, this medication, with THE SAME addicition profile as morphine was promoted for several years as being virtually NON-ADDICTIVE by the manufacturer in spite of their knowing the truth. As a result, instead of being sold to a relatively small market segment, OxyContin became one of the largest selling pain meds in the nation for several years and a multi-billion dollar blockbuster drug. These facts came out repeatedly in several unconnected investigations around the country.) Most of the general practitioners, because they were not specialists, just took the word of the drug reps, and prescribed accordingly.

If you can, in the case of depression, a psychiatrist is preferable to a general practitioner for psychiatric medications as they work with them every day and really do know what they do and don't do, where a general practioner can't be expected to have the same level of knowledge.

Also, with ADD and ADHD, apparently the full diagnosing procedure is long , difficult and quite specialized. It's not easy and a lot of doctors do prescribe without the full diagnostic procedure. For anyone unsure about a diagnosis or whether a prescription is correct, the best bet is to find a specialist who has the skills and tools to do a comprehensive screening in order to arrive at a solid diagnosis. Managed care has created a lot of "drive through" doctor's appointments and consequently a lot of sped up diagnoses that serve neither the patient nor the doctor, many of whom would probably prefer to have more time to spend to reach a conclusion.

Still, a 75 million year old alien is not the answer.

Josh, you're a good guy. I ... (Below threshold)

Josh, you're a good guy. I figured you didn't mean in such broad strokes what you wrote.

There is some merit in questioning/examing the explosion of Ritalin. Child psych isn't my field by choice, but it is a compelling and controversial issue that males are so grossly over diagnosed with ADD/ADHD. Are we medicating young males for normal behavior that just comes naturally to them in grade school - more gross motor than fine motor skills versus their female counterparts?

and throwing drugs which act on all neurons mediated by a given neurotransmitter is, in many ways, a "dark ages" approach.

Give me a break. We are far more advanced than Freud's schizoaphrenicogenic mother model where mom's alleged cold behavior was the root of schizophrenia. Psychiatry isn't perfect. The brain is the last frontier in medicine.

Here's something interestin... (Below threshold)

Here's something interesting about Cruise's performance with Matt Lauer - he was using Scientology techniques in "communicating" and attempting to almost forcibly refocus Lauer and master the conversation (as instructed below), and that even included his posture, the way he was leaning into Lauer, as well as the intensity of the eye contact, as you'll see. It is described beow as a technique designed to increase tension. (It's a religion, right??)

The following is a critique incorporating part of the entry level "Success Through Communications" Course - excerpt below found at http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Secrets/TR/hqs-course.html

..... from Hubbard Qualified Scientologist Course, by L. Ron Hubbard, p. 155. Copyright © 1988 by the L. Ron Hubbard Library. Reproduced under the "fair use" provision of the US copyright code.

Although the TRs when sold at the introductory level are supposed to facilitate "communication", by TR 4 it becomes clear that the real goal is preparation for learning "auditing" -- and for being audited.

This image from the HQS book is the fourth in a sequence illustrating the TR 4 drill known as "Preclear Originations". The student auditor (the woman) has asked the auditing question "Do fish swim?" and been told in response by the coach, simulating a preclear, "I have a pain in my stomach." She dismisses (Scientologists would say "acknowledges") this "preclear origination" with "I understand", and then, as shown above, repeats the auditing question. She must persist in this manner until the preclear has answered the question. In the figure she is displaying good "confront" (TR 0) by staring directly at the preclear and remaining motionless as she repeats the question. (There are drawings shown on the site - she is leaning forward)

One wonders about the smiles on the particpants' faces; in the previous panels the preclear has a pained expression as he describes his stomach ache, and the auditor is shown with an even sorrier looking "mental picture" of his distress as she acknowledges (in reality, dismisses) his comment. The subtext in this last panel seems to be this: by forcibly refocusing the preclear's attention on adherence to Scientology ritual, his stomach pain is alleviated and he is made happy again. (This is in fact the rationale behind Scientology "assists".)

It's also worth noting the violation of norms for personal space inherent in the positioning of the student and coach in the image, a technique designed to increase tension (and especially effective with partners of mixed gender.)

Oh come on, Lauer was just ... (Below threshold)

Oh come on, Lauer was just trying to bait him. Cruise showed him up as a know-nothing talking head. No wonder he has to carry Katie's coffee for her.

Suffers of ADD/ADHD have le... (Below threshold)

Suffers of ADD/ADHD have less electrical activity in the frontal lobe of the brain where the inhibition function is located. Less electical activity means less blood flow... means less development. The brain is literally becomes, over time, immature in this area. This key area of inhibition-- where you decide (if you're normal) whether or not to respond to a stimulus, rather than necessarily attending to the next bright shiney object or thought--where you make hundreds of decisions everyday--decisions from which people gain a sense of self. That's what it means to have untreated ADD/ADHD. But Ritalin brings electrical activity to near normal levels. The blood flows. The brain develops. Tom Cruise knows things? Like what? Good God. Certainly not how to lovingly parent a child with ADD/ADHD. And shame on him for shaming loving parents of children of a serious, and sometimes debilitating disorder.

Tom Cruise fits the profile... (Below threshold)

Tom Cruise fits the profile of the unfortunate ones who fall prey to "religious" cults. He has shown himself to be a relatively uneducated, naive, and narrow-minded person who suffers from low self-esteem issues. I am glad that Matt was able to provoke Tom on the Today show. What was left of Mr. Cruise's carefully cultivated public personna dropped out of view, and people could see the evidence of what immersion into Scientology's philosophy can do to a person. It's scary to think that otherwise stable people really believe the theories of a science fiction writer and turn away from open-minded, rational debate on serious issues taking the absolutist, "my way or the highway" approach...rather like terrorists who attacked our country on 9/11. It is even scarier to think of the potentially wide=reaching damage wrought by Mr. Cruise's opinions about psychiatry and psychiatric drug therapy. While it is very important to debate and consider whether any proven, scientifically-based (and science is not perfect or absolute either), medical therapy is appropriate to use on oneself or one's child, but it is not OK to take such a close-minded approach such as Mr. Cruise does. He is apparently incapable of thinking for himself outside of what the Scientologists tell him. Katie Holmes' family needs to consider staging an intervention quickly before the daughter they know fades away into someone else...sculpted by this dangerous and intimidating cult.

#1. when Tom Cruise is perf... (Below threshold)

#1. when Tom Cruise is perfect he can lecture the rest of us - if Tom were real smart he'd have noticed Katie darling has a bad habit of getting engaged on the drop of the hat and dropping the finance at about the same speed, but then again, if they have an arrangement he likely doesn't care - besides anyone who treated Nicole Kidman the way that man did is in my a-hole book

#2. anyone who joins that Scientology cult has quite the nerve discussing issues of mental illnesses as if he is an expert

#3. no drugs are not always the answer and we do live in a society that is quick to go to pharmaceuticals, esp drs, rather than do a full review of all factors that can affect health, like diet and exercise etc however the reality is there are some chemical imbalances in life that cannot be cured or not completely cured by diet and exercise and to belittle those people who suffer from those illnesses in fact takes us back to the middle ages, when they would burn epileptics as witches - would Mr. Cruise like to suggest all epileptics need a good personal trainer and nutritionist?

#4 someone got it right, it's like old Tom is off his meds and someone needs to put him back on it

#5 of course the more simple explanation is that Tom has always been off his rocker but now that his sister is his PR person, he's been let out of the cage, I think he needs to get his old publicist back or did Nicole get her in the divorce?

. According to Scientolo... (Below threshold)

. According to Scientology's website, this woman "has the power to, “control life, thought, matter, energy, space, and time....”" And Tom Cruise is two levels higher than she is. Who knows what he thinks he can control.

Obviously not a squirting microphone. That guy is lucky Tom didn't kill him with his mind as level VII's are supposed to be able to do easily.

Well, what do you expect fr... (Below threshold)

Well, what do you expect from anyone who's studying under Ron Hubbard who has an underground unit that includes people like Manson, Son of Sam, et al?


… as for Brooke Shields:</p... (Below threshold)

… as for Brooke Shields:

Brooke, you are an idiot and a hypocrite.

According to PEOPLE Magazine, she said:

"I agree with him (Tom) about his feeling on prescribing drugs to kids. We are in accord …I don't think Ritalin should be prescribed to kids. Postpartum depression is a different matter. I think I'm more qualified to talk about that (than he is.)

Brooke, what the hell do you know about Ritalin Dr. Shields?

The rumor / conspiracy mill... (Below threshold)

The rumor / conspiracy mill in tinseltown believes tommy boy was being pressured by his "church" to pony up more of his earnings to them using dirt they have on him as leverage, meaning threatening to expose his true sexual orientation to the public which in turn would damage his box office appeal as an action star. Coincidence? You decide ...that he's going over the top at every opportunity to express his "love" for a relatively obscure B list actress (soon to be A list thanks to Tom 'ala' Nicole K.) that's he's known for less than two months. And how interesting that all of a sudden he's become very vocal about his "church" and his opinions on psychiatry, which coincide with his "church's" teachings. One would be surprised at the "rumors" one hears when he or she is actually in the Industry. That's what happens when a young, unknown actor makes a deal with the Devil.

If Tom is a "Thetan VII" an... (Below threshold)
Common Sense:

If Tom is a "Thetan VII" and has the ability to "control time, space, thought, etc" why was there ever an argument with Matt Lauer in the first place? Shouldn't he have been able to use his powers to immediately overtake the minds of everyone watching, especially that of Matt and cause them to see and accept his points?

If Scientology is so correct in their views, why wont they provide proof of anything they believe in?

Seems to me if someone thinks they found the meaning of life they would want to openly and passionately share it with the rest of the world. Instead Scientology is full of secrets and passive existence. What rubbish.






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