Monday, May 18, 2009
Saturday, February 28, 2009
"Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose."
Even though I am regularly forced to watch all six episodes of the Star Wars movies, including recent Clone Wars episodes, I always find Master Yoda to be incredibly profound. I've been fortunate to have my own Jedi Masters, and consider myself to be a Jedi in training. In this clip, Anakin receives counsel from Master Yoda, and it's the last thing he wants to hear. He is fearful and does not want Padme to die. In our own greed, insecurity and fear, we become captives to the very thing we fear the most. Cognitive behavioral therapists refer to this as paradoxical intention, or asking the client to do or wish for the very thing they fear most.
Friday, February 27, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Article by: Mark R Wicclair, Center for Bioethics and Health Law, University of Pittsburgh, 3708 Fifth Avenue, Suite 300, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA; firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: The popular television series House M.D. is drawn upon to provide a critical examination of medical paternalism and how it is presented in the show. Dr Gregory House, the character named in the title of the series, is a paradigm of a paternalistic physician. He believes that he knows what is best for his patients, and he repeatedly disregards their wishes in order to diagnose and treat their illnesses. This paper examines several examples of medical paternalism and the means used to portray it favourably in the series. It is argued that the positive depiction of medical paternalism in the fictional world of the series does not apply in the real world. The paper also considers why a show that features a paternalistic physician who so blatantly flouts mainstream medical ethics might appeal to health professionals and members of the general public.
Alas, I am unable to review this article for you, because I am poor and cannot afford to buy it. I think the implications for medical paternalism, as portrayed in the television show House, are particularly relevant for the issue of involuntary commitment, hospitalization and mandated treatment. At what point, do we as professionals, have the right to impose treatment, and deny basic civil liberties (even when it is in their very best interest for recovery)?
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
The cooperation (or altruism) of people has long been investigated before the days of Batman or the Joker, using non-zero sum games, or games in which the gains and losses do not sum to zero. In these games, if the players cooperate they minimize their losses and maximize their total gains. The findings indicate that even if it is in the players' interests to cooperate, most people compete anyway.
The best-known game of this kind is called Prisoner's Dilemma. Pairs of subjects role-play being suspects in a crime. They get interrogated separately by the district attorney and are given two alternatives - to confess or to remain silent. The game is worked out so that if both remain silent, there can be only minor charges lodged against them. If one confesses and the other remains silent, the confessor receives immunity from punishment and the other one gets the severe punishment. If both confess, they both get severe sentences. The best strategy is for both to be cooperative and not confess. The research shows, however, that players tend to confess in the hope of beating out the other. But since both confess, both lose. Maybe the Batman movies aren't so dark after all.