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Another good read

Old 10-31-2014, 02:13 PM
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Another good read

Would love to hear peoples ideas on this article.
http://lifeprocessprogram.com/the-tr...ion-a-disease/

Having been around recovery for 10 years myself and coming at addiction from all angles, it is easy to see (from a place of skepticism) how various models with set Dogma's more often than not have no scientific evidence. Many times in the past would just believe it because an oldtimer said it or a Therapist recommended it, much of recovery today seems a mash up of personal experiences with erroneous conclusions.
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Old 11-01-2014, 06:12 AM
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Mr. Peele makes some good points but few of his can be proved . Massive data collection, not do-able at the time this book was written, would give his arguments some credibility. The word "disease' has been diluted to include all things uncomfortable (therefore needing "treatment"). Giving alcoholism dis-ease status may have been the beginning of this trend. The Progression is a toughie. By my life course you could prove the progressiveness. I've also been hearing of permanent progressiveness since '81 so is it subliminal (like learning French in your sleep....Moi?)? I do believe Mr. Peele had some financial motive to get a piece of the disgruntled AA-ers buying his books too (but Ernie Kurtz writes so much better). It really boils down to the money. AA's biggest asset is it's self support. If the same altruistic spirit were applied to the science of recovery (vitamins vs. prayer double-blind maybe?) we could get somewhere. I've said more than once " the meeting could be an hour of quilting or doing the hokey-pokey and would have the same results as long as not drinking were the theme. The baby need not be thrown out with the bathwater but given the devotion some AA-ers have for Bill's writings, throwing out what doesn't help or make sense could turn violent. AA is dying a slow death and others are finding the peer-group-model of counseling without the god nonsense works just fine or better. The internet has changed the game for the good. Information is good!
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Old 11-01-2014, 07:00 AM
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If it 'really boils down to the money', then throw a half hour of your life away learning about Marty Mann and R. Brinkley Smithers, two people who are primarily responsible for this specific corruption of science. This theory you mention is based on a study funded by Smithers and designed by Mann, a person of no particular ability or training in medicine or psychiatry. The paper's owner, a Dr. Jelinek, withdrew his findings once the scientific community exposed the absence of rigor and false conclusions he made in it. Regardless, Dr. J served his purpose as his flawed results are still touted as 'proof'.

Information is scary and threatening too, and is only 'good' if that mindware gap discussed on another thread here is a small one, with effective equipment available to the individual to bridge the gap. If that gap is significant, then information is deemed to be bad.

I am astounded a law needed to be passed requiring that efficacy of any treatment regime be demonstrated before public funds are made available. It will take at least a generation before this particular flavor of common sense becomes common again.
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Old 11-01-2014, 10:20 PM
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Good article, although most of those ideas are not the author's, rather he is just taking bits and pieces from others.

Of course there is no such disease as alcoholism, everyone knows that deep down. Unless you believe that people who smoke cigarettes are diseased and nicotine-aholics, or that coffee drinkers are diseased and caffeine-aholics. When you continually use an addictive substance, you will become addicted, that is the substance's nature. There's no mental or character defect involved, no genetic secret code in play, no "sickness."

But society is brainwashed and conditioned differently when it comes to alcohol. It's shoved down our throats from an early age that alcohol relieves stress, is one of life's true pleasures, is a gift to mankind, etc etc etc. Because of that, those who are harmed by it more than others were labeled as "diseased" but the funny part of that is most of those doing to the labeling are addicted to the substance themselves (even if they don't know it and believe themselves to be "social" drinkers).

Addiction is not and never could be a disease. Plain and simple.
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Old 11-05-2014, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by anattaboy View Post
AA's biggest asset is it's self support. If the same altruistic spirit were applied to the science of recovery (vitamins vs. prayer double-blind maybe?) we could get somewhere. !
!

Thanks for your response anattaboy. I do agree that data on addictions is incomplete and lacks vigor, as addiction tends to sit outside of the more exact medical sciences (there are no blood test or genetic marker or exact brain state or tumor or growth in the body) so no doctor can really do a test and say there it is you have an addiction, and therefore the Disease model is kind of a strange approach as the diagnosis tends to be subjective. There is so much to consider with diagnosis of addiction and my biggest issue is (and I am not sure Mr Peele isn't part of this as well) there are many voices making Hardline conclusions as if addiction was within the realm of exact science. The world is overflowing with camps of people who express recovery with a " I have the answer" attitude and yes much of this is to make money and almost none of it has Good and rigorous science backing it up, much of the time new ideas rely on a anti stance towards old ideas, and that kind of either/or expression often is the main selling point to get people to buy a book or attend a therapist or follow a new program (I totally agree these approaches tend to throw the baby out with the bathwater). I am still a skeptic with Mr Peele's conclusions of what does and doesn't work and sometimes the either/or fallacy puts me off on my contemplative days, But can spark me up on my annoyed angry days (I tend to favor the ideas presented by Mr Peele, but when I turn the skeptical disposition on myself I don't really have much data apart from a very small world in recovery revolving mainly around my personal experience)


You mentioned AA's biggest asset is its self supporting and I am not so sure this is an asset for society in general. What seems to happen is when you sit a program outside of the marketplace (in economic terms) that it tends to sit the program outside of the Marketplace of ideas. I think what may need challenging here is the ideas that being self supporting equals altruism, altruism as I understand it is selflessness and I think its a mistake to equate altruism directly with internal versus external financial interests.
I suppose it depends on what is measured as selfless acts, I understand concepts that helping others, helps ourselves, I don't think this is altruism.

You mention altrustic spirit would maybe help to make the science of recovery better, I disagree here. Time, expertise and equipment that helps collect and analyze the data requires money. I was often (before I became a skeptic) of the belief that Money spoils things, that selfishness wins over wanting to make the world a better place, however once I started getting interested in how science works, Much of my beliefs (things like big Pharma ) were unfounded.(just another version of throwing the baby out with the bath water)

These are just some of my thoughts on the matter.
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Old 11-08-2014, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by SoberHoopsFan View Post
Good article, although most of those ideas are not the author's, rather he is just taking bits and pieces from others. .
"Good article, although most of those ideas are not the author's, rather he is just taking bits and pieces from others"

There is no real value of an idea just because its original, it tends to be a strawman argument to suggest otherwise. Most affective Science and inquiry is building on others ideas including falsification. Perhaps Mr Peele needs "validation" for originality, I personally don't care as long as the ideas stand up.

"Of course there is no such disease as alcoholism, everyone knows that deep down"

How do you know this and what do you actually mean with this statement?

"Unless you believe that people who smoke cigarettes are diseased and nicotine-aholics, or that coffee drinkers are diseased and caffeine-aholics. When you continually use an addictive substance, you will become addicted, that is the substance's nature"

I certainly believe a persons Body is diseased as result of these actions emphysema, cancer, blood pressure, heart disease etc: , I am more reserved on the idea that the Bodies physical addiction should be called a disease, and question the value of the mental/emotional state of a person with the addiction also should come under that banner. However I don't think there is much evidence that the addiction lies within the substance itself, that anything has its "own" nature in that way.
To make this argument you would need to separate addictions to chemical substances that enter the body in some way from behavioral addictions like gambling. For example would you say Sex had a nature of addiction, or eating. Yet these are dysfunctional behaviors for some people that follow patterns that are very similar to substance abuse and latest research show various brain states produced by behaviors like this match those that are produced by taking drugs. In other words there seems to be more similar about addictive patterns No matter where they arise then there are differences.

" no mental or character defect involved, no genetic secret code in play, no "sickness."

I agree character or objectively moral defects are questionable in regards to addiction, But Mental states brought about by, our genes and our environment (although can be hard to confidently pin down as causes) must have some role, and this perhaps is where Addiction Research should focus. There seems to be alot of study around Genetics and most studies only seem to pin point genetic pre-dispositions to things like Metabolism of Alcohol, But there seems to not be any specific Gene that marks addiction (like you would find in eye color).
Is it a Sickness?? It depends how its measured, by which standard, Sickness is one of those words that has multiple meanings, if we are describing a state of being Unwell (separate from well being) then the word makes sense, however if its back to the disease problem then it can be challenged (but even then disease can also have multiple meanings that can just be a simple describing word to a representation of attitude towards addiction)

"But society is brainwashed and conditioned differently when it comes to alcohol"

I assume this is an idea from Mr Vale
For me this is a "isn't it obvious" fallacy, and can be applied to almost any aspect of modern society from media, internet, porn, fashion, gambling, food, religion... The list is endless.
As a social observation, its obvious that Alcohol has been part of society for thousands of years and has been promoted as something that seems to have more benefits than problems. But this is an aspect of human nature and society, firstly based on ignorance of possible damage and then on promotion to keep it legitimate and maintain it as normal. This is how we function as a Free society, when things like Alcohol have been around for so long and used for so long, society judges them as legitimate parts of happy living and the majority don't become addicts.
As alcoholics, Alcohol is poison but for people who it is not, it is an important part of their livelihood, economy, culture and even wellbeing. I understand the conspiracy idea Mr Vale promotes, that we are all addicts in respect to drinking and its affect on the body and brain is Fake happiness, But by what standard is this measured against, to argue this there would have to be an objective morality that nothing we do, drink, eat that alters our perceptions is legit happiness.


"It's shoved down our throats from an early age thatalcohol relieves stress, is idence one of life's true pleasures, is a gift to mankind, etc etc etc. Because of that, those are harmed by it more than others were labeled as "diseased" but the funny part of that is most of those doing to the labeling are addicted to the substance themselves (even if they don't know it and believe themselves to be "social" drinkers)."

Where is the evidence for this?

"Addiction is not and never could be a disease. Plain and simple"
Making assertion of absolute only hinders rational thinking on a subject.
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Old 11-09-2014, 12:32 PM
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this subject is a point of curiosity for me. a member named "gamer" was in the newcomer forum with challenge to the disease model this am. the post is gone now. it seemed a bit baiting in nature.

i have yet to decide if all of addiction is disease. i understand the arguments from both sides. when i was in my major research mode,when i admitted i had a problem, i read alot of anti-disease lit that was quite convincing. RatRec ultimately views the addiction as a faulty belief system with skewed logic.

the reason i still entertain the disease model comes down to cause and effect. regardless of the logic that leads the user to repeatedly expose themselves to a substance, the exposure has effects on physiology at a chemical level. these effects are seen in every tissue the substance interacts with. i think we all agree on this. cigarettes, as an example, affect skin, mouth, nose trachea, lungs,heart, blood vessels, etc. the active drug in the smokes also chemically and physically changes the BRAIN. this includes structure, blood flow, receptor density, and neurotransmitter activity. the same can be said for most drugs of addiction, and also behaviors that are performed often. even meditation causes change in the brain over time.

So...AFTER the faulty logic that led to misuse of whatever, is a resultant change in neurology enough to warrant a "disease" label? if someone has amped up or dampened their system to the point that logic no longer functions, i consider it to be at least an injury. if an injury is severe enough that it causes chronic disfunction, is it not a disease process?

there is a blurry line here. OCD is a disease. it has been proven to be treatable with chemical manipulation of the brain. but it results in illogical behavior. you just cant argue logically with someone suffering with this, no matter how smart they are intellectually. you can say "youve already washed your hands 13 times! how could they possibly be getting any cleaner? you realize your doing more harm that good-your skin is bleeding!". if the sufferer has a jacked-up feedback loop on a chemical level, you can just talk yourself blue in the face.

with addiction, i think that at some point new habits of thought are crucial. otherwise illogical ways of thinking will translate into pathological behavior and relapse.but the disease model includes addressing the physical/chemical issues detrimental to recovery.

as a hypothetical example: you have two guys with an equal level of alcohol dependence they have the same overall physical health and intellectual capacity. after a two week, medically supervised detox, they are back with their families and knee-deep into rational recovery, and AVRT. the difference-one guy exercises, eats well, and manages stress in his life effectively. the other lives on coffee and microwave burritos, and sleeps when he has to. on the couch! in front of the TV! LOL! -who we gonna bet on?

poor health is a disease process. some of us may have more going on than stinkin thinkin.
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Old 11-09-2014, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by leviathan View Post
this subject is a point of curiosity.
Great points Leviathan. thanks for that
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