You Should Care About The Imprisonment of Brandon Raub

September 3, 2012

One of the most troubling news stories of the last few months is the story of Brandon Raub. It shows us why we should be watchful for when the government uses “psychology” to label private citizens as a “risk”.

Brandon is an ex-Marine, and wrote about how he supported a revolution against Obama’s tyrannical regime. He made some Facebook statuses. Kind of like how I do. The response, of course, proved what he was saying. Police, FBI, and even Secret Service showed up, locked him in their police car, never charged him with a crime, and then sent him to a mental hospital — John Randolph Hospital. He was held for days before being released. No charges filed.

I’m sure we’ve all seen a dystopian movie or at least a TV show where the “establishment” uses claims of insanity to enslave the people. What’s horrifying is that the the “science” of psychiatry is hit and miss, at best.

It’s one reason the government shouldn’t be allowed to lock random people into jail for political views unless they are an active threat to others. Not a potential threat — an active threat. Anything else is just psychobable “pre-crime” tyranny, much like the movie Minority Report.

The disconcerting Rosenhan experiment

The Rosenhan experiment was a test done by psychologist David Rosenhan in 1973. It was published in the journal “Science”, and was titled, “On being sane in insane places”. The results of the study are disconcerting, to put it mildly.

Rosenhan’s experiment utilized 3 men and 5 women in each experiment. They would fake auditory hallucinations to be admitted to 15 different mental hospitals in 5 different states. Once admitted, the men and women would then act perfectly normal, and explain that they had no symptoms. So what did the doctors do?

They diagnosed them with illnesses, of course.

All but one were diagnosed with schitzophrenia. All were forced to admit having a mental illness. All were forced to take mind-altering drugs. None was actually ill.

One hospital heard of the story, and challenged Rosenhan. They challenged him to send fake patients to their hospital so they could show the world that they could detect the fakes with real science.

They came to an agreement, and after several weeks, out of under 200 patients, the hospital identified 41 people as being fakes. Unfortunately for them, they were tricked. Rosenhan never sent anyone to the hospital.

In the journal article, Rosenhan explained that when it comes to psychiatry, doctors will dehumanize the patients, and turn normal things into “symptoms”. Everyone’s different, so everyone ends up being seen as at least a little insane. Everyone’s sick.

This dehumanization of people and the labeling of them as “insane” is horrifying. Do you get jealous when your significant other flirts with someone else? That’s a disorder on your part. Do you raise your voice when angry? Disorder. Do you disagree with the establishment? Narcissist. Do you support cutting the welfare state? Psychopath, you don’t care about the poor.

These are the thoughts of statists who view the world in a little closed-minded box, and want to use force to accomplish their goals.

What Brandon Raub’s detainment is really about

Collectivists and statists don’t like liberty. They don’t like the idea that people can be actually different than they are. The radical Islamic collectivists hate all sin and Christians and others. The theocratic Christians hate all sin and want to use violence on it. The leftist statists hate economic liberty. The socialists hate property and the fact that some people are just worth more economically to society than others.

They all share one thing in common: they want to control other people and force them to fit into a little box the statist happens to like.

The moment people begin to show how strongly they reject that social box the statists hold so dear, then the statists believe the person is broken and dysfunctional. Dehumanized. Anything they say is just the ramblings of a crazy person who is obviously defective. They’re not acting the way “people should” act. And since the statist believes government violence is the answer to everything, that’s the response they immediately use.

This is behind every major tyranny in history. Obama’s “light” tyranny, Hitlers, the Chinese, the Soviets, the Cubans, even some modern European countries. They have a box, and they want you to fit into it — or else.

This is why the psychiatric angle is something we should pay attention to. The trend toward labeling angry dissenters as “risks” or “psychologically off” is similar to what Obama did before by labeling the Tea Party types as “potential” home-grown terrorists. Spot your enemy, label him, isolate him, and then dehumanize him. It’s a basic strategy used constantly in politics.

We’re capitalists

We, of course, aren’t statists. I don’t know how you should live your life. And it’s not my business how you live it. I might disagree, and I might even talk with you about it. I’m an opinionated Christian, so that’s probably going to happen.

But I’m not going to try to figure out if I can label you as “crazy” so I can call the cops. That’s absurd.

But I’m not going to outlaw you.

I’m not going to steal your property.

I’m not going to put you in jail.

I’m not going to regulate your life.

I’m not going to tax you.

I’m going to leave you alone. I’m a capitalist. If you’d like to learn more about capitalism, make sure to check out our introductory article What Is Capitalism? It’s a primer for beginners.

Copyright Capitalism Institute, 2011-present.