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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 15 (1973) 1, 157 - 164

Korte bijdrage

La philosophie dans le boudoir, of vergeefs geworpen handschoenen van W&C

J. Strich

It is argued that the main mental pollution of our environment is the ubiquitous reality-based credibility-crisis which augments anxiety, alienation and district of authorities. Frustrations having lost their social significance, light- and flightreactions become more extreme in intensity and extension. Authorities in turn tend to abuse their power, thereby, while making vain promises, attributing to unreliability. An attempt is made to show that medical authority as such is crumbling too. In psychiatric circles awareness of 1 threatening loss of credibility and 2 inevitable need for social involvement, is fended of by various mechanisms. Mentioned are intellectualization and abuse of language to avoid actual commitment. Retreat into bulwarks of bureaucratic institutions ensues; those called 'health-services' tend to create new but like institutions in an attempt to shift blame for impotente and failure onto others. Our responsibility entails, to start with: cooperation to try and increase our credibility by self-scrutiny, honesty, verbal clearness, and learning down our own strongholds. We ought to politicize, and inform governors according to wellcollected data and considered opinions, instead of wishful thinking and rendering lipservice. We should take action even if that seemingly jeopardizes our 'secure' position. Our collective defense-mechanisms doorns us to be mentalpollutors ourselves, draw us info the maelstrom, and prevent us from taking steps as partly competent but wholy responsible people towards a more hygienic approach. It is suggested that meetings should no longer be 'about discussion' but actual discussions about issues where, with assistante of a polemologist, our discipline might possibly be of help. Primary prevention should be our main concern.