I went to the book-launch of a new book on well-being policy yesterday, which brought together some leading figures in this nascent movement – including David Halpern of the government’s ‘nudge unit’, Canadian economist John Helliwell, psychologist Maurren O’Hara, and Juliet Michaelson of the new economics foundation. The book – Well-being and Beyond – is Read more…

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One of the things that has happened in our culture over the last 300 years is the shift from theology to morality to psychiatry. Conditions that were once deemed vices are now considered diseases. Gluttony has become obesity. Despair has become depression. Lust has become sex addiction. A few ornery voices on the right, like Read more…

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Radio 4′s Moral Maze this week looked at the government’s expansion of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and at a new report from Lord Richard Layard of the LSE (the principal arranger of the government’s embrace of CBT), which warns that local and national governments are failing to honour the spending commitments they made to CBT. Read more…

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Psychiatry is at war with itself. The battlefield is the forthcoming publication of the DSM 5 – the latest version of the diagnostic manual that defines mental illnesses for the industry. At stake is the authority of psychiatry, and our society’s whole approach to the mind and mental illness. This is the second of a Read more…

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This from the Guardian: Britain is turning into a nation of pill-poppers as people become increasingly unwilling to tolerate even the slightest discomfort, according to new research. The study finds that, in the past two decades, the number of prescribed medicines dispensed per person has risen from eight a year to more than 16. Its Read more…

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