Johann Hari on How Neoliberalism Drives Depression and Anxiety in the U.S.
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Here on Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, I’m Amy Goodman with Nermeen Shaikh. NERMEEN SHAIKH: We turn now to mental illness
and its treatment in the United States. According to the National Institutes of Health,
the disease is widely prevalent: Almost 20 percent of adult Americans suffer from mental
illness every year. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental
illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the U.S., or 18 percent of the population,
every year. About 7 percent of adult Americans suffer
from major depression. According to the World Health Organization,
the U.S. is one of the most depressed countries in the world, and, globally, depression is
the leading cause of ill health and disability. Depression is also the major contributor to
suicides worldwide, which number close to 800,000 a year. The National Alliance on Mental Illness finds
that more than half of Americans don’t receive treatment for mental illness. AMY GOODMAN: Well, we now turn to a new book
that argues that people who do receive treatment for depression and anxiety are not being treated
adequately. Author Johann Hari says too much emphasis
is placed on brain chemistry, to the exclusion of equally and often more important environmental
causes. He points specifically to what he calls, quote,
“junk values,” writing, quote, “Junk food has taken over our diets, and it is making
millions of people physically sick. A growing body of scientific evidence suggests
that something similar is happening with our minds—that they have become dominated by
junk values, and this is making us mentally sick, triggering soaring rates of depression
and anxiety.” Johann Hari has experienced mental illness
himself, found he was still depressed after having been on antidepressants for well over
a decade, starting when he was a teenager. In his research, Johann Hari found his experience
was far from unique and that a staggering 65 to 80 percent of people on antidepressants
continue to be depressed. Well, Johann Hari joins us now from Washington,
D.C. He is a writer and a journalist. His book on depression is called Lost Connections:
Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression—and the Unexpected Solutions. His previous book, Chasing the Scream: The
First and Last Days of the War on Drugs. Johann, welcome back to Democracy Now! Let’s start with the title, because I think
that very much conveys what your underlying thesis is: Lost Connections. JOHANN HARI: Yeah. So, everyone watching this knows that they
have natural physical needs, right? You need food, you need water, you need clean
air, you need warmth. If I took those away from you, things would
go real wrong real fast. One of the things I learned on the big journey
I did for this book, over 40,000 miles, interviewing the best experts in the world on what causes
depression and anxiety and what solves them, is there’s equally strong evidence that
we have natural psychological needs. You’ve got to feel you belong. You’ve got to feel your life has meaning
and purpose. You’ve got to feel that people see you and
value you. You’ve got to feel you’ve got a future
that makes sense. And our culture is good at lots of things,
but we’ve been getting less and less good at meeting people’s deep, underlying psychological
needs. And that’s one of the key reasons why we
have this exploding depression and anxiety crisis. So, that can sound a bit weird in the abstract,
so I’ll give you a specific example. I noticed that lots of the people I know who
are depressed and anxious, their depression and anxiety focuses around their work. So I started to look at the evidence. How do people feel about their work in our
culture? Turns out Gallup did the best research on
this. Thirteen percent of us like our work most
of the time. Sixty-three percent of us are what they called
“sleepworking”—you don’t like it, you don’t hate it. Twenty-four percent of people hate their work. So you think about that. Eighty-seven percent of people don’t like
the thing they’re doing most of their waking lives. I started to think, “Could that have some
relationship to our mental health crisis?” So, I discovered the incredible Australian
social scientist called Professor Michael Marmot, who discovered the core, in the 1970s,
of what makes you depressed at work. If you go to work and you feel you have low
or no control, you are significantly more likely to become depressed, or even more likely
to have a heart attack. That’s because human beings have a need
to feel their life is meaningful. And if you’re controlled, that disrupts
your ability to create meaning. And I started to think, chemical—so, I believe
strongly that chemical antidepressants have a real role, they give some relief to some
people. But I started to think, “What would be the
antidepressant for that problem?” Right? Which is so prevalent in our culture. And I learned there is one. In Baltimore, not far from where I am now,
I went and met a woman called Meredith Keogh. Meredith used to go to bed every Sunday night
just sick with anxiety about her work. And one day, with her husband Josh, she did
this quite bold thing. Josh had worked in bike stores since he was
a teenager, which is, you know, insecure, controlled work. And Josh and Meredith decided they were going
to set up a bike store with their colleagues that ran on a different principle. It’s a democratic cooperative. You might call it democracy now. The way it works is they don’t have a boss. They take all the big decisions together. They share the profits, obviously. They share out the good tasks and the less
good tasks, so no one gets stuck with the, you know, more depressing tasks. And one of the things that was so fascinating,
spending time with them, and in other democratic cooperatives, is how many of them talked about
how depressed and anxious they’d been in their previous workplace, but they weren’t
now, which is completely in line with Professor Marmot’s findings. And as Josh put it to me, there’s no reason
why any workplace should operate like this. We have a society that is putting in place
all sorts of structures that are causing depression and anxiety, yet we tell people this—so,
your depression and anxiety, if you’re watching this—I learned about these nine causes of
depression and anxiety for which there is scientific evidence. Two are biological, and the rest are in the
way we live. If you’re depressed, if you’re anxious,
you’re not crazy. You’re not a machine with broken parts. You’re a human being with unmet needs. And there are ways we can change our society
so that those needs are met and you won’t be in such pain. NERMEEN SHAIKH: Well, Johann Hari, I want
to ask you about some of the criticism your book has received. In a Guardian piece headlined “As a psychiatrist,
I know that Johann Hari is wrong to cast doubt on antidepressants,” Carmine Pariante writes,
quote, “[J]ust as knowing that you have broken your legs in a car crash does not miraculously
heal your broken bones, knowing the ‘rational reason’ for being depressed does not make
depression any less real, or the sufferer any less in need of support and treatment.” She [sic] disputes the argument in your book
that depression and anxiety are treated only as a chemical problem by the psychiatric community. She goes on to say, quote, that your “suggesting
that prescribing antidepressants to a patient who suffers from clinical depression is the
equivalent of treating them as a ‘machine with malfunctioning parts’ is wrong, unhelpful
and even dangerous.” JOHANN HARI: Yeah, the— NERMEEN SHAIKH: “Antidepressants are no
cure-all, but demonising them plays into stigma meaning that, tragically, more people will
be held back from receiving help for a debilitating condition.” JOHANN HARI: Yeah, the individual you’re
quoting—yeah. NERMEEN SHAIKH: So, Johann Hari, can you respond
to that, and specifically— JOHANN HARI: Yeah. NERMEEN SHAIKH: —the claim that she makes
that your book demonizes an illness that’s already demonized and stigmatized, and that
people already hesitate to go on antidepressants precisely because of this stigma? JOHANN HARI: Yeah. The individual you mentioned admits they’ve
not read the book. In the book, I’m very clear: I want to expand
the menu of options for people with depression and anxious people; I don’t want to take
anything off the menu. Some of the people I most love, some of my
closest relatives take chemical antidepressants. I’ve never urged them to stop. Chemical antidepressants do give some relief
to some people, which is really valuable. They don’t solve the problem. This isn’t just my position, this is the
position of the World Health Organization. World Health Organization explains, mental
health is produced socially. It is a social indicator. It needs social as well as individual solutions. So we need to be able to have a serious conversation
about these causes that doesn’t just descend into kind of ridiculous straw men. Of course I’m not against chemical antidepressants. I took them for 13 years. Some of the people I most love take them. But we have to be able to talk about the wider
context that’s happening and how we deal with that. One thing that helped me really change how
I think about this is when I went to interview a professor called Derek Summerfield, amazing
South African psychiatrist. And he explained to me—he was in Cambodia
when they first introduced chemical antidepressants, right? And the doctors there didn’t know what they
were. So he explained. And they said, “Oh, we don’t need them. We’ve already got antidepressants.” And he said, “What do you mean?” They explained. They talked about a farmer in their community
who worked in the rice fields, who one day got blown up by a land mine. They gave him an artificial limb. He went back to work in the fields. And he started just to become very depressed. Apparently it’s very painful to work underwater
with an artificial limb. He—I imagine it’s pretty traumatic—starts
just crying all day, didn’t want to get out of bed. They said, “We gave him an antidepressant.” Derek said, “What did you do?” They said, “We went. We sat with him. We listened to his problems. We realized that his pain made sense. We figured if we bought him a cow, he could
become a dairy farmer, he wouldn’t be so depressed.” They bought him a cow. Within a few weeks, his crying stopped. Now, what those Cambodian doctors knew intuitively
is what the World Health Organization has been trying to tell us for years, that our
depression makes sense. Far from stigmatizing depressed people, I
think this destigmatizes them. There’s actually a really interesting experiment
I go through in Lost Connections that demonstrates this really powerfully. Because what we’ve done up to now is we’ve
told people an exclusively biological story about their distress. That’s what my doctor told me. Now, there are real biological factors to
depression, but most of the causes are in the way we live. And I think that’s much more powerfully
destigmatizing. It says it’s not you. You’re actually surrounded by loads of people
who feel this way. You feel this way for perfectly understandable
reasons. And, of course, Dr. Pariante, who, to be fair
to him—it’s a man, not woman—said he agrees with me on these social causes and
that we need to deal with these deeper social causes. I think part of the problem is we’ve been
in this funk of pessimism where we think we can’t change anything. There are loads of experiments that have demonstrated
that we can powerfully change them. I’ll give you one example. In Canada, in the 1970s—something that’s
been covered by Democracy Now! really well—in Canada, in the 1970s, they
did an experiment. They chose a town, at random, called Dauphin—it’s
near Manitoba—and they gave a huge number of people in this town a guaranteed basic
income. It was the equivalent of $15,000 a year. They said to them, “We’re just going to
give you this money in monthly installments. There’s nothing you have to do in return
for it, and there’s nothing you can do that means we’ll take it away.” And they followed what happened over the next
three years. The most powerful thing for me is, there was
a massive fall in depression and anxiety. Depression and anxiety that was so severe
people had to be hospitalized fell by 9 percent. Now, that tells us something. It tells us the financial insecurity of neoliberalism,
that guys document so brilliantly, is causing a lot of that depression and anxiety. Firstly, it’s very empowering to people
to tell them, “Your depression is caused by these factors in the way we’re living. It’s not that just your brain is broken.” There are factors in your brain going on,
of course. We are biological beings. But that’s not the primary driver here. And there are solutions that we can band together
and fight for. That’s much more destigmatizing and empowering,
and it’s not a kind of straw man about saying the drugs are bad. Of course they’re not. AMY GOODMAN: Johann, earlier this month, British
Prime Minister Theresa May appointed a minister for loneliness, following a year-long investigation
which found 14 percent of the population in the U.K. often or always feels lonely. Can you talk about the connection between
loneliness and depression? And you have 20 seconds. JOHANN HARI: Yeah, we are the loneliest society
there’s ever been. Professor John Cacioppo, with Chicago University,
has shown that. There are doctors that have started prescribing
lonely people to take part in voluntary gardening groups. That is twice as effective as chemical antidepressants
in reducing depression. We’ve got to look at the wider solutions. The book goes through the nine causes of depression
and anxiety for which there is scientific evidence, and seven different kinds of antidepressant
that we should be utilizing, alongside chemical antidepressants. AMY GOODMAN: We’re going to do Part 2 of
this discussion. We’ll post it online at democracynow.org. Johann Hari’s new book is out. It is called Lost Connections: Uncovering
the Real Causes of Depression—and the Unexpected Solutions.

81 thoughts on “Johann Hari on How Neoliberalism Drives Depression and Anxiety in the U.S.

  1. The will to fix the problem we have to get over this need for money. All money. You don't need something for your effort.

  2. This system is the so horrible. It keeps you awake with worry and racing thought wondering if tmrw will be the day that your life and finances that are already on its last thread will break.

  3. The reason why Americans are depressed is mainly the culture.
    Sex which is a natural impuls is supressed and full of guilt.
    Violence is glorified from a young age.
    This is the the reason from depression to school shootings…
    In the US a person can fire a gun at 10, drive at 16 but can (legally) only have sex at 18 and have some form of independence over their body at 21. This is not natural… So the brain doesn't like it and the chemistry gets messed up.

  4. He cant compare the US to Cambodia. In the U.S. your a human resource not a person. Just look out side at all the homelessness.

  5. This is amazing. Economist Richard Wolff comes to the same conclusion that worker coops are the answer from the angle that capitalism is the inherent problem. https://youtu.be/T9Whccunka4

  6. Neo-Liberalism… we should just call it what it is… farming. Do you ever worry that cows are depressed?  Yeah… neither do the corporate bastards behind… "Neo-Liberalism".  We've always known that greed will be the downfall of humanity.  We even have a saying for it:  "Love of money is the root of all evil".  We've learned to shorten it so that we tend to think that money is the root.  But love of money is the root.  And love of money is greed.  We are facing the consequences of creating a violently ignorant populace who are being abandoned by the gods the media created for them.  There is a relatively easy way to bring an end to the dominance of corporations.  Just stop playing their game.  Stop paying them… all of them, for anything. Just like any strike a non payment strike needs massive support… But if people stop paying, the corporations fall.

  7. It's the paradox of freedom of choice. Believe corporations intentionally do that to control and subdue people into a consumer market.

  8. More like Oppression in society. Depression is a mind game. To shift blame victims of American dictatorship. America is failing it's Citizens miserably with healthcare system drugs Slavery. Making excuses enabling rich people. To dictate how we receive resources. Along with political beuarocracy of Congress.

  9. He's actually on to something.

    This has already occurred in Japan and persist even today. 541,000 young Japanese will not leave the house. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5Pwn6JX4eY

    We have been told, for centuries as Thomas Curran stated, "The Market and Marketwise forms of competition, are the only organizing principle of human activity." How narrow and selfish and idea for a any society. It may help, again, a very narrow subset of society, but marginalizes the larger group. This buys into one of the innate drivers of human beings which is survival.

    Researchers studied over 40,000 students in Canada, U.S. and Great Britain from 1989-2017. A sizable swath, I would say.

    Over the last 50 years, communal interest and civic responsibility have been progressively eroded, replaced by a focus on self-interest and competition in a supposedly free and open market place.

    In this new market-based society, young people are evaluated in a host of new ways. Social media, school and university testing and job performance assessments mean young people can be sifted, sorted and ranked by peers, teachers and employers. If young people rank poorly, the logic of our market-based society dictates that they are less deserving – that their inferiority reflects some personal weakness or flaw.

    Perfectionists
    Broadly speaking, perfectionism is an irrational desire for flawlessness, combined with harsh self-criticism. But on a deeper level, what sets a perfectionist apart from someone who is simply diligent or hard-working is a single-minded need to correct their own imperfections.

    Perfectionists need to be told that they have achieved the best possible outcomes, whether that’s through scores and metrics, or other peoples’ approval. When this need is not met, they experience psychological turmoil, because they equate mistakes and failure to inner weakness and unworthiness.

    It’s no wonder that there’s substantial evidence indicating that perfectionism is associated with (among other things) depression, anorexia nervosa, suicide ideation and early death.

    Excerpts from: http://theconversation.com/how-perfectionism-became-a-hidden-epidemic-among-young-people-89405

    Unreasonable demands lead to substantial rise in perfectionism among young people
    o The extent to which young people attach an irrational importance to being perfect, hold unrealistic expectations of themselves, and are highly self-critical has increased by 10%
    o The extent to which young people impose unrealistic standards on those around them and evaluate others critically has increased by 16%
    o The extent to which young people perceive that their environment is excessively demanding, that others judge them harshly, and that they must display perfection to secure approval has risen by 33%.

    The authors suggest a correlation between neoliberal governance in the US, Canada and the UK from the 1980s onwards with growing perfectionism across all three countries. Neoliberalism, they argue, has emphasized competitive individualism and people have responded by agitating to perfect themselves and their lifestyles.

    Previous work from the research team looked at the growing relationship between perfectionism and burnout.

    Excerpts from: https://www.myscience.org/wire/unreasonable_demands_lead_to_substantial_rise_in_perfectionism_among_young_people-2018-Bath

    Millennials And Gen Z Are Perfectionists, Resulting In Depression

    Dr. Barbara Greenberg, a clinical psychologist specializing in family and relationship issues, points to one glaring factor: social media, saying, “These people grew up being constantly evaluated on social media.”
    Striving to be perfect all the time can lead to increased depression and anxiety. The study authors observe that, “Research among college students and young people, for example, has found self-oriented perfectionism to be positively associated with clinical depression, anorexia nervosa, and early death.”

    Greenberg adds, “When self-consciousness and perfectionism increase, anxiety and depression increase as well. They go hand in hand.”

    Again an excerpt from: https://www.immortal.org/36130/millennials-gen-z-perfectionists-resulting-depression/

  10. This man is a discredited plagiarist and opportunist. And democracy now should have done their homework. He's an utter fraud and its incredible that he's been allowed on.

  11. Antidepressants help to minimize symptoms of depression so the person can work on their particular depression!
    Depressed people need the supportive help of antidepressants to be able to see how to help themselves

  12. The biggest problem is people talk and belive everything about neolibralism bc they think what they see in there daily lives reflects its truth
    Not to mention if you are from the middle class you and yours have been rewarded by this system

  13. fascinating, "87% of american's don't like the thing their doing most of their working lives." lol, not exactly a roaring endorsement of capitalism is it? turns out capitalism isn't much better than feudalism… of course, ya think the idea that 3 people can make 68 billion in the last 9 months while the average worker saw a 4 cent wage increase has something to do with that?

    co-operatives are the future. as in horizontal societies, not the unequal hierarchal societies have now.

  14. Guarantee of a basic income would be a nelibral wet dream granddaddy milton himself wanted to do it with negative income tax
    Then destroy the last remaining refuge of a public space or social saftey net
    A fed job guarantee administered on the local level blows that out the water we could redfine work
    We could set a minimum salary floor force the private sector to be more competative and pin income to labor instead of the abomination of wall st. Or the fantasy of the market

  15. The "studies" he states are ridiculous. Like of course if you give people money they will become less depressed. It's been a known fact for a very long time that money is usually the biggest stressor for people. And giving a guy a cow in Cambodia? That is just simple psychiatry at work of people listening to the guy's problems. People who go on anti-depressants usually see (and should) a therapist too. You need both to have better and more well rounded care. So I really don't understand his point on any of this to be honest.

  16. He's absolutely right. I've been diagnosed with depression for over 24 years, and I can state outright that the medication hasn't changed my life in any way for the better. I was asking for help with the conditions in my life that make me depressed, and there was none available – only pills, and quarterly monitoring meetings, which treats nothing. They have defined as treatment a kind of care which does not help and does not even expect, and in plenty of cases has no intention of trying, to fix you. Mental illness is a rational response to an unfair, cruel and insane world, which has been made insane and unhealthy by the sociopaths who run the worlds of business and politics, and the dominant ideology of neo-liberalism which is the philosophical expression of and rationalisation for sociopathy. Mental illness is the inevitable product of the insanity of the world under capital and under the profit-motive. I have given up on the psychiatric profession not only because they are catastrophically under-resourced by neo-liberal politics, but because the pills only alter affect, not circumstances or lifestyle or skills or society. They are just another set of commodities proffered spuriously as the answer to all our problems, which do nothing but generate profits for the pharmaceutical industry, just like every other commodity which is sold on the false claim that it will make you happy and solve your problems.

  17. "Stating the obvious here." – Randle McMurphy

    Although "needing to belong", "being seen"… not so sure about that. Let's start with being acknowledged as an individual with inalienable rights. Being held to one's word, and holding others to theirs. Then "belonging", if it has an added value for oneself and for the others. If not, being free to stand alone without having to wonder how to survive. Being heard and listening, and sometimes not being seen… at all ! Being open to social exchange, and categorically closed to social control. Being able to live one's life according to one's principles, and not pushed into any kind of subservience. Being the master of one's time. Having one's own headquarters from where to roam ingenuously. And creating… creating without boundaries !

    No pill's gonna help you with any of that. Aside from a cash cow for modern charlatans, depression is merely a conceptual invention defining one's state of mind when one realizes one is being deprived of all that by everyone one encounters, because the system one lives in, which psychiatrists endorse, is one of badly disguised servitude. Depression is not madness. Depression is lucidity. It IS sanity in an insane society abiding by pressure. It is a discreet revolt against this pressure and what it aims to accomplish : the eradication of Humanity.

    Maybe I should write a book…

  18. Thank you both Johann and Democracy Now, this is a narrative that people very much need to hear. As Democracy is good politically, being heard sympathetically coupled with a genuine interest is good emotionally.
    Curing the causes of depression will as heal our broken society.

  19. Ummmm, common sense? But, of course, us nutjobs are crazy cuz we live in a world that has no use for common sense…..

  20. He is basicly saying it is the stresses of mordern Americian life style and environmental effects. I came to these conclusions back in my mid 20s. It is the food we eat. The work we do. All of ot comes down to being valued in an inclusive community. We all lack wholesome purpose. When living for basic needs is a struggle. This is a sickenness that hurts us all gobally as a whole. Even the ultra wealthy are not exempted from the sickness. As we all are lulled into a self destructive sense of what it takes to be contented purpose. When the meaningless becomes the driver for seeking purose(happiness) then depression takes hold. In the case of the supposedly powerful and wealthy. This takes on a corrosive aspects that mirror insanity. This is why sociopaths are so prevalent in governments, government administrators, lawenforcement, heads of corporations, entertainment, and media. When the definition of life life and living is centered on money and power. The sickness spreads like a pandemic, and this pandemic is worse than all the wars and biological pandemics like the black plague. And the cumulative effects of centuries of stagnant and static supposed living, is what we are seeing in modern times.

  21. Though distilling this topic down to one exact causal factor is an inexact science, if forced to do so, one can compare today's rates of affliction to those in the '60s, and know that there's simply no way five times as many Americans today have a screw loose as compared to yesteryear. These psych drugs are very profitable. You do the math. If you told me the number were double, then we might be able to have a conversation.

  22. What is so enlightening about what he saying. If you get depressed it means that you have working neurons. Anti depressants can be linked to violent behavior.

  23. I disagree with him very strongly. Positive values are NOT the problem in our society. Neoliberal values, as with all Liberal values, are positive values. Violent Authoritarianism (aka: Conservatism) is driven by negative values… and that is what causes harm at all levels.

  24. Buddhism doctrine is eminent in school to eradicate depressions in western community but don't say liberal ideology that cause xenophobia on capitalistic dummy theological religion and dictatorial regime inherited cultural society

  25. I'm practically disabled with fatigue of uncertain origin that reached its peak in 2008 and has hasnt resolved since then. The public loses too, my $50k in student loans might never get paid off at all. I do not contribute to the economy, I subsist. Disability admins dont consider me disabled simply bc they do not know the specific cause, analogy: a murder victim was never murdered if you cant identify the killer. And it effects my 75yo widowed mother, whom I can't care for in anyway.

  26. If you LEFTIST CUNTS were in charge, the U.S would be another Venezuela! If you truly believe capitalism is immoral, move to CUBA or some other SHIT HOLE country. If you have a problem with income inequality and you're RICH like Amy Goodman, give away 85% of your assets and income. Show us by example and maybe we'll follow. Otherwise, STFU you hypocritical PUSSIES! Finally, Israel won the war, they keep the land and dictate the terms. Thats how every State was established – bloodshed and brutality. GROW UP!

  27. Happiness doesn't come in a pill or serum. Economic inequality is the greatest cause. Job insecurity causes the most stress. The affordability crisis has exiled me to China.

  28. No Jesus in your life will also cause depression. Having piles of cash won't make you happy in the long run. In my 53 years, that's what i have come to understand living here in the USA. If anybody is interested in learning what the whole Jesus journey is all about, the site teachingfaith com is one of the better ones (bible teaching) out there. All their content is free. Start with a teaching series titled, ''change of mind''. That one lays down one of the best foundations of understanding that i have come across…You never know unless you try…

  29. 0:05 …. Geez … what a grim depressing looking woman.  I think I mostly agree with this guy, but as the messenger for this message he is problematic because of his ethics and behavior.  I am not sure how to look at that objectively, but there is something I do not like about Hari.

  30. American society's meme seems to be righteous murder*, a kind of playing the wrathful God.  In other words we encourage people to be hateful, bullying, violent and judgemental, but we disguise that by setting up these fake scenarios … like war movies, or cop shows … how many of them do we have.  Or we have these hugely violent action movies where some huge injustice or murder or hurt of someone or someone close, and then the rest of the movie is revenge as a reason for us to enjoy watching the *"righteous violence"

  31. If you're interested in an eye opening, jaw dropping video about why there are so many mental health issues in first world countries….. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVQ4LIp39Xo

  32. I disagree with this guy about anti-depressants. They worked very well in my family. One type that works on one family member, it works very well with the other family members. Yes, problems don't get solved. But not everybody has the privilege like him to be able to fix all their issues.

  33. 7:43 – "The World Health Organization explains, mental health is produced socially. It is a social indicator, it needs social as well as individual solutions."

    This is brilliant, all the best most useful ideas fit and are simple. This is both, and it explains why Americans are so mixed up and angry and in conflict with each other and the world, and that is the way the billionaires like it.

  34. the headline is misleading. He discusses depression and gives a clear-sighted insight and, happily, a wonderful way forward.

  35. Some "breakthrough". I'm more likely listen to a PhD in a science field than I am to a journalist regarding this subject.

  36. huge democracy now fan and pretty much agree with the argument. But Johann Hari has a very very questionable background and he should be looked into before we all rush out and get the book….

  37. He isn’t demonizing anything. But now, obviously, the ones that are exploiting people earning their money with pharmaceuticals will hunt him and demonize him.

  38. sick society is trying to cover up for the real reasons people are depressed(powerlessness to fulfill deep human needs make people lose hope and lead to depression, addiction to shopping, internet porn, alcohol, non legalised drugs and legal drugs, working, all compulsive behaviour, suicide, exessive risk behaviour…

  39. My meds made me sleepy, and going to a therapist made me feel like I had to pay someone to just listen to me. "Time's up-I don't care about you until next week." This is wonderful. My family says, "Call if you need me." I need to hear them call me to say, "I was just thinking about you." Reach out to me! Don't cross me off your "to do" list-"Told her to call so the responsibility is on her, not me. Check."

  40. Any psychiatrist I've been to would agree with Hari's claims. They have told me, quite directly, that their job is to help people function and be able to have jobs, family, etc. i.e. their job is to help people function in a capitalist system.

  41. Are Trump’s supporters capable of understanding that they are complicit with the evil things his regime is doing? Do they feel shame or guilt?

    They do not think in those terms. A colleague of mine, Steven Hassan, has been talking about the cult of Trump for a long time. He is an expert on mind control. Trump’s followers fit the model, the stereotype of a cult follower. But with Trump there are tens of millions of cult members. Most cults are relatively small. Maybe the largest had a few hundred people. The cult of Trump is millions of people. We've never seen a cult of that magnitude. These are the people who are going to vote Donald Trump back into office in 2020. This is a truly scary nightmare situation.

    How do presumably good people — the guards and ICE enforcers — end up doing the horrible things that are taking place in Trump’s concentration camps? Research shows that people attracted to law enforcement tend to be authoritarian. But that does not explain the cruelty we are seeing done in Trump’s name.

  42. We have a Coop Bike store next door in San Francisco- Yellow Bike. It was started in Austin, Texas, where I used to live. Then in San Juan Capistrano, where I also used to live, we have Buy My Bikes which MUST be a Coop, how the guys Love their work, I bought a KONA Dew touring bike there in 2008 and a Trailer to haul my Guitars and Amplifiers, also I worked Amateur Radio 'Bicycle Portable" on it. These guys at Buy My Bikes were like a fun shop to visit. I was treated better than I ever…well I am 70 years old and have 'selective memory syndrome, LOL

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