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July 22, 2019


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Sten Helmfrid

In poker terms, Professor Crawley bet all her money on jack high in a game of Hold’em. When all the cards were on the table, she declared that they now were playing lowball and raked in all the chips in the pot. The BMJ Editor—who managed the poker game—declared that he accepted the assurance from Professor Crawley that she intended to switch to lowball already before she saw her own cards.

Nancy Blake

In her paper, Crawley acknowledges that many children did not want to enter the trial. Reports from others who have completed the Lightning Process (and been made much worse by doing so) indicate that the NLP processes for belief change and increasing motivation were used to get patients to deny that they were sick (told to say they were fine no matter how they felt) and to enact this denial by giving up aids and practices they had adopted to manage an illness characterised by muscle failure upon minimal exertion, and exercising.

The US IOM (now Academy of Medicine) report on ME/CFS
states that this is a chronic, disabling disease which of which the central characteristic is that ‘exertion of any kind - physical, cognitive or emotional - may adversely affect many organ systems...’. It is not psychogenic.

This confirms that encouragement to believe otherwise, and to behave otherwise, is a serious level of medical abuse. Additionally, the children were told that the treatment ‘wouldn’t work if they told anyone what it was’.

This adds psychological abuse to the physical abuse. The treatment includes being told to lie about how you feel. But you mustn’t tell anyone that it does. Now researchers are asking you to answer a questionnaire about how much the treatment has helped, and they are persistent (ringing parents repeatedly) in their demands for replies.

This fulfils the three conditions for what Gregory Bateson calls a ‘schizophrenogenic double bind’. The person is asked to do two opposite things at the same time (lie/tell the truth), cannot comment on their situation (mustn’t tell anyone what the treatment is), and cannot escape from the situation (researchers persistently demanding answers). Bateson believed that this could cause a psychotic break with reality. I believe that there has been one suicide.

Not only should the treatment be identified as criminal medical abuse, so should the trial itself.

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