Precious Cargo

Refreshingly Bitter And Twisted Observations On Life's Passing Parade.

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Location: Valley Village, California, United States

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Dr. Phil, Anti-Therapist

Dr. Phil: The Anti-Therapist?
by Michael Ventura

Published in Psychotherapy Networker, 7-2005

Dr. Phil is the opposite of you. With, according to his
website, 22 million books in 37 languages, countless hours of internet log-ons, plus (when you include reruns) an infinitenumber of television hours worldwide, he takes his
viewers and readers to the limits of simplification. If they need to go beyond the banal and simple, they need you. Which is to say, they need the patience to be patients--they
need the gradual fix, the personal touch. The working therapist is everything Dr. Phil isn’t.

So the most famous psychotherapist in the world is the most famous therapist in the world precisely because he doesn’t do therapy. And therein lies the secret of his
phenomenal success. Therapy is personal, messy, and takes time. What Dr. Phil sells is standardized, efficient, and takes eight minutes. Therapy is expensive, and insurance covers less and less of it. Dr. Phil’s website and TV show are free, and you can purchase the books at a discount at Border’s. You can buy Dr. Phil, or click him on your remote.
Your assumptions and defenses can remain intact, because, unless you’re one of his unlucky guests, you’re always at a safe distance from him. Therapy is serious work. Dr.
Phil, by his own disclaimer, is entertainment--given that you’re entertained by the heartbreak of strangers.
“Get real,” counsels Dr. Phil.
But, alas, those two words take us back to where Dr. Freud began: What is the nature of human reality? What does it really mean to “get real”? And then the complications start. And where complications start, Dr. Phil stops.
Dr. Phil -- the Anti-Therapist.

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Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose.

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"Megaloid momworship has got completely out of hand"

Meanwhile, Megaloid momworship has got completely out of hand. Our land, subjectively mapped, would have more silver cords and apron strings crisscrossing it than railroads and telephone wires. Mom is everywhere and everything and damned near everybody, and from her depends all the rest of the U. S. Disguised as good old mom, dear old mom, sweet old mom, your loving mom, and so on, she is the bride at every funeral and the corpse at every wedding. Men live for her and die for her, dote upon her and whisper her name as they pass away, and I believe she has now achieved, in the hierarchy of miscellaneous articles, a spot next to the Bible and the Flag, being reckoned part of both in a way. She may therefore soon be granted by the House of Representatives the especial supreme and extraordinary right of sitting on top of both when she chooses, which, God knows, she does. At any rate, if no such bill is under consideration, the presentation of one would cause little debate among the solons.

Philip Wylie, "Common Women," from Generation of Vipers (1942)

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