In response to M. Allen Frances article in Psychology Today, pleading for less funding the fundamental research, « chasing the wrong priorities » regarding « our day to day responsibility » and calling to « more compassion » :
Wholeheartedly agree M. Professor. But don’t you led the DSM IV project ? Wasn’t it meant to contribute not to clinical use but to fundamental research ? Didn’t the series and the whole projet of DSM largely contribute to struggle against clinical concepts such as neurosis and psychosis which, in every day practice helps clinical workers to aim the goal you regret they can’t achieve ? Moreover didn’t it contribute, due to it’s very statistical and atheoritical methodology, to the viral extent of lamentable diagnostic epidemics such as, for example, depression- and the misuse of antidepressants and the ADHD spreading the kiddie cocaïne all over the country and in the world ? So many costly and deadly plagues, M. Professor that, yes, we deplore, and that scientism and lack of clinical concern has brought to us in the name of fundamental research. I don’t remember you criticizing this research DSM would contribute to serve when you where in charge, M. Professor. Would you have had that same attitude you have now, were you not retired M. Professor ?
Dr Pierre Sidon, psychiatrist, Paris, France.
PS : NIMH has been funded by $650 millions from private donation aimed at solving the genetics of mental illness. NIMH leader is neuropsychiatrist Thomas Insel, who lately criticized the DSM for being consensus based against Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) project he aims to launch based on scientific data such as genetics, imaging and cognitive science. There’s a new kid in town, M. Allen Frances !
PS2 : further readings on Thomas Insel, where he explains attachement to spouse of him more enigmatic than the one found in voles : « Why do Voles Fall in Love? », Robert Palmer, Emory Magazine, 1999 !