August 2007 Monthly Archive
(Finally watching the series on DVD.)
Carmela Soprano, wife of mobster Tony Soprano, is so unhappy in her marriage that she goes to see an old, Jewish, psychiatrist, which is a leap for her as she is not too keen on psychiatrists-- or Jews, for that matter. She describes her ambivalence about her husband:
"The Other Soprano Psychiatrist" ››
Here's an example of what I've been talking about.
I'll spare you the details, but John Couey is found guilty of kidnapping, raping, then burying alive, 9 year old Jessica Lunsford. Here's the part relevant to our disussion: defense attoneys said Couey could not be executed because he was mentally retarded-- his IQ was tested by the defense at 64. (They even let him color with crayons during trial.)
But, and I'm quoting:
Circuit Judge Ric Howard in Citrus County ruled that the most credible intelligence exam rated Couey's IQ at 78, slightly above the 70 level generally considered retarded.
That's it, people. 8 points. We may not agree whether the death penalty is good or bad, but can we at least agree that decisions of life or death shouldn't come down to, well, how stupid you are?
So the Fed has an interesting problem: whatever it does-- raise rates, cut rates, etc-- it causes a Moral Hazard, but to different people. To whom does it want to teach the wrong lesson?
Or, choose: rich get decimated, poor get poorer; or rich get richer, poor get by?
"The Fed's Dilemma: The Moral Hazard" ››
(This is Part 2-- click to read Part 1)
If you behave badly because you know you'll get away with it, that's being "bad."
A Moral Hazard is different. If you behave "worse" than you would have otherwise, solely because you know that you won't have to bear the consequences, then you have a Moral Hazard.
I'll emphasize: the key is that your behavior is in itself not necessarily "bad." It is simply worse than your behavior otherwise would have been, because you know there won't be consequences.
Here's why it's called a Moral Hazard: if there are no external consequences, the only thing that would prevent you from behaving worse is an internal set of rules.
Where do these internal rules come from?
"The Moral Hazard" ››
Here’s what’s happening in the stock market: people bought stocks on credit, and now they can’t pay it back because the interest rates are too high, and their collateral caught on fire. And the lenders want their money back, now.
This has everything to do with psychiatry.
"Interest Rates and The Moral Hazard: Why You Must Buy GOOG Now" ››
A reader asked me to help promote the Hong Kong Mental Health Support Group. My first reaction (after being flattered) was to silently muse, "well, why Hong Kong only?" What's the difference? I realize that people from Hong Kong might like the sense of community, but I'd bet anyone from Hong Kong is already plugged into a community-- why another one for mental health issues? What's the real advantage? Understand that I am not an idiot-- I see how people would feel more comfortable, but I'm asking whether there is any real, actual, measurable benefit to a culture specific group vs. a general group.
Which got me thinking of this: in the massive push for biological bases for mental illnesses, have we ignored the very real influence of culture on mental health? And suicide? Cultural influences so strong, that they not only overwhelm biology but even probability?
"Hong Kong Suicides, Revisited" ››
"How To Take Ritalin Correctly" ››
Do I look like I'm bluffing, bee-atch?
Can you correctly identify emotions if they only briefly flicker across the face? How good do you think you are?
Was a certain emotion harder or easier for you? Did it seem like some of the faces flickered faster than others? It may not have anything to do with the emotion. It might be the test.
"Are You Good At Reading Faces?" ››
Sponsored post: as many bloggers are, I was offered $30 to review someone else's site/product. Ordinarily I pass, but this one caught my eye for reasons which will become clear.
"Lawsuit Funding" ››
"How Do You Treat Atrial Fibrillation?" ››
MY PSYCHIATRIST WANTS TO GIVE ME TWO ANTIPSYCHOTICS AT THE SAME TIME. WHAT SHOULD I DO?
Undoubtedly, your first impulse will be to punch him in the testicles, but as you know, the Kellogg-Briand pact (1928) expressly forbids this. However, it is notably silent on the issue of voodoo/ shark attacks, which can be used with discretion.
"Aren't Two Antipsychotics Better Than One? The Most Important Article on Psychiatry, Part 3" ››
For more articles check out the Archives Web page ››