Psychology is Manufacturing Victims
March 17, 2009
David Cloud, Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061
The book “Manufacturing Victims: What the Psychology Industry Is Doing to People” by Tana Dineen is a powerful warning of the negative effect of psychology on modern society. She warns,

“The Psychology Industry casts a long shadow over life in North America. And the shadow is threatening to shroud the Western world. ... The Psychology Industry is not concerned about, and would prefer to overlook, the damage it wreaks not only on users but also on society as a whole. ... What is overlooked entirely is the larger social effect of the industry, how the Psychology Industry is manipulating everyone to accept its mythology and how it is using its persuasion to enforce conformity” (pp. 269, 270).

Dr. Dineen, who was a licensed clinical psychologist for two decades in Ontario and British Columbia before turning her attention full-time to research and writing, documents how that psychology has become a big business that has created a victim mentality, turning healthy people into victims that need the psychological product to survive.

The book is valuable in understanding modern Western society, which has become not only psychologized, but also feminized, Lennonized, mysticized, environmentalized, rationalized, lawyerized, and socialismized, among other things. All of this is the result of turning away from the truth of God’s Word and rejecting the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables” (2 Timothy 4:3-4).

Since the mid-20th century, psychology has offered itself as the solution not only to individual problems but also to corporate ones, entangling itself within every segment of society, the courts, the military, business, you name it. In fact, psychologists are deeply involved in global affairs, offering their “science” as the key to world peace. When Anthony Marsella accepted an Award for the International Advancement of Psychology in 1998, he said:

“Psychologists, as knowers and helpers, can do many things to address the problems and possibilities emerging from our global community. ... They can assist in envisioning, negotiating, designing, and evaluating a human social order and a meaningful world peace” (
Manufacturing Victims, p. 282).

Dineen pulls no punches. We would wish that Bible preachers would be as outspoken today against heresy and compromise as this psychiatrist is against the Psychology Industry!

The very first paragraph of
Manufacturing Victims sets the tone for the rest of the book:

“Psychology presents itself as a concerned and caring profession working for the good of its clients. But behind the benevolent façade is a voracious, self-serving industry that proffers ‘facts’ which are often unfounded, provides ‘therapy’ which can be damaging, and exerts influence, which is having devastating effects on the social fabric. The foundation of psychology, its critical thinking, if not an illusion from its inception, had by the end of the 20th century been abandoned in favor of power and profit, leaving only the guise of integrity, a show of arrogance and a well-tuned attention to the bottom line. ...
Manufacturing Victims intends to expose psychology as an industry out to sell services, gain influence and make money at the expense of both the authentic victims, which it fails to respect or to protect, and of the fabricated victims manufactured by it” (Manufacturing Victims, third edition 2001, pp. 15, 33).

Since the first edition of
Manufacturing Victims was published in 1996, Dineen has been attacked and ridiculed by the psychology industry. She had to endure an 18 month investigation after a psychologist lodged a formal complaint with her licensing board. She was “diagnosed” at long distance as suffering from “burnout” or “depression”!

Dr. Dineen does not discuss the root of the problem of psychology, that being its rejection of the Bible as God’s infallible Word and its gross misunderstanding of human nature and spiritual realities (e.g., the Almighty Creator God and Satan), but she does well document its wretched fruit in modern society.

She deals extensively with the exceedingly dangerous practice of recovering memories through hypnosis, guided imagery, and suggestive counseling. She also deals with addiction counseling, grief counseling, sensitivity training, and many other things.

Following are some sample quotes from this powerful book:

“The psychological way of life has infiltrated our society to such an extent that it goes unseen, accepted and undetected, affecting our thoughts and language, emotions, behaviors and beliefs” (p. 283).

“By 1995, according to the American Psychological Association, 46 per cent (128 million) Americans had seen a mental-health professional” (p. 21).

“This business, which presents itself authoritatively in a language that appears to be scientific, has succeeded in turning American society into what Charles Sykes recently termed ‘a nation of victims’” (p. 24).

“[A] hairdresser whose personal warmth had always impressed me suddenly changed, there was no sparkle and no animated conversation. When asked why, she spoke of discovering that she was a ‘victim of incest’ and described how memories had begun coming back of how her father had sexually abused her from the time she was six months old. She had lost her vitality and independence, relying on her psychologist to interpret her past, explain her present and predict her future. For the psychologist, a profitable business relationship had been established. ... Once individuals accept a ‘victim’ label, their lives become centered on this new identity” (pp. 26, 27.

“The therapists transformed age-old human dilemmas into psychological problems and claimed that they (and they alone) had the treatment. ... The result was an explosion of inadequacy” (Charles Sykes, quoted in
Manufacturing Victims, p. 37).

“America has become a ‘psychological society’ in which psychologists are allowed, even expected, to interpret what people say, feel and do, and to explain their words, moods and actions. ... This psychological concept holds remarkable similarity to the astrological idea that what happens in the sky determined what happens in people’s lives. Both rely on the assumed ability of trained, gifted or selected people who can see either what is written in the sky or what is hidden in the unconsciousness” (pp. 43, 44).

“[O]ur mental health practitioners and researchers are predisposed by interest, investment, and training in seeing deviance, psychopathology, and weakness wherever they look” (Norman Garmezy, quoted in
Manufacturing Victims, pp. 64, 65).

“The Psychology Industry, with its beliefs and practices, has been largely responsible for the creation of a world in which people live in fear that they will crumble” (p. 66).

“RMT, or ‘memory work’ as it is often called, is based on the fixed belief that psychological problems are caused by traumas, most likely sexual and most often experienced in childhood, and that any inability to remember them fully is due to ‘denial’ and ‘repression.’ ... Proponents of this approach rely on false interpretations, along with leading suggestions and supportive encouragement, to convince people that there may be things in their past that they have forgotten and that ‘repressed memories’ are the cause of their problems. Since virtually everyone has a span of time they can’t remember clearly, and recalls relatively little from early childhood, a psychologist probing these gaps and connecting them with some hidden trauma can make people receptive to the idea” (pp. 76, 77).

“What all fabricated victims have in common is not some extraordinary experience but rather the expectation of a future made brighter by virtue of victim status. Fabricated victims are given permission to lead psychologized lives, where guilt and shame are banished and responsibilities are diminished. ... Fabricated victims of all types run the risk of becoming trapped and tangled up in their victim identities. Unsure of their ability to take care of themselves, they become dependent, immature and helpless, needing protection, support and ‘nurturance.’ Surrendering their autonomy, self-determination and personal power, they come to be identified as helpless individuals, lacking the ability to think clearly and make decisions. ‘Protected’ from situations that test or demand their abilities to deal with conflict, they resign themselves to the unreal compassion and soothing of therapeutic, self-help and support group relationships. Cutting themselves off from family members and friends who may challenge and confront their beliefs, they lose their roots both in their personal histories and in their communities. Tied only to psychologists, who remain ‘allies’ only as long as funds last, they enter a ‘freefall’ into eventual self-destruction” (pp. 68, 99, 100).

“[After studying more than 7,000 psychotherapy cases and comparing them with a control group of 500 people who had received little or no treatment, British psychologist Hans Eysenck, in 1952, concluded] that roughly two-thirds of a group of neurotic patients will recover or improve to a marked extent within about two years of the onset of their illness, whether they are treated by means of psychotherapy or not. ... Many similar studies have supported the overall conclusion that most of the improvement attributed to psychotherapy is due to the general effects of talking to a warm, kind person and the effect of just naturally eventually feeling better anyway” (pp. 116, 117).

“Ditman studied three groups of alcoholics who had been arrested and charged with alcohol-related offences. The court had assigned these individuals to AA, an alcoholism clinic, or a nontreatment control group. A follow-up found that 44 per cent of the control group were not re-arrested, compared wot 31 per cent of the AA group and 32 per cent of those treated in a clinic; those that received treatment did worse than the untreated. ... Such findings are not rare. Robert Spitzer, of the New York Psychiatric Institute, comments that ‘negative effects in long-term outpatient treatment are extremely common,’ and researchers Truax and Carkhuff state that ‘the evidence now available suggests that, on the average, psychotherapy may be harmful as often as helpful, with an average effect comparable to receiving no help’” (p. 122).

“The ominous cautions about the effectiveness of psychotherapy have been echoing throughout the halls of the Psychology Industry for decades. In 1961, Hobart Mowrer succinctly wrote, ‘There is no shred of evidence that psychoanalyzed individuals benefit from the experience’” (p. 147).

“But now, in the first decade of the 21st century, psychologizing has taken over virtually every aspect of human existence. There are psychological experts in death and dying, obesity and eating disorders, being married and being single, sexual pleasure and dysfunction, being fired and being successful, midlife crisis and growing old, child care and elder care, and so on” (p. 154).

“Nowhere, however, is the entrepreneurial psychologist more evident than in the courtroom. ... ‘the pursuit of truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth has given way to reams of meaningless data, fearful speculation, and fantastic conjecture. Courts resound with elaborate, systematized, jargon-filled, serious-sounding deceptions that fully deserve the contemptuous label used by trail lawyers themselves: junk science’” (pp. 154, 155).

“The Psychology Industry prefers to ‘abolish the hospital only to make the whole world a hospital’ and everyone a patient” (p. 161).

“Self-esteem has become embellished to the point where lack of it is generally accepted as one of the major causes of personal and social problems, which must be directly addressed before people will change or social problems can be solved. As one psychologist wrote: ‘every theory of mental health considers a positive self-concept to be the cornerstone of a healthy ego.’ Such a belief led the California State Assembly to set up a task force charged with the mission of promoting self-esteem. The legislature believed that raising self-esteem would reduce welfare dependency, drug abuse, teenage pregnancy and other social ills. ... The problem they encountered was that what they ‘knew’ to be true turned out not to be. The editor of the report admitted that ‘one of the disappointing aspects of every chapter ... is how low the association between self-esteem and its consequences are in research...’ But contradictory findings have never daunted the Psychology Industry. So, despite the admission that ‘there is no basis on which to argue that increasing self-esteem is an effective or efficient means of decreasing child abuse,’ the report went on to recommend that ‘policy interventions to reduce child abuse that involve increasing self-esteem should be encouraged and should include interventions at the individual, family, community and societal levels’” (pp. 171, 172).

“... recent research of the current, psychologically-based ‘Sex Offender Program’ used throughout the Canadian prison system, indicates that those deemed to have benefited the most from the program--were cooperative in group therapy sessions and apparently learn to emphathize with their victims--are also those most likely to re-offend” (pp. 173, 174).

“In one study of 106 people given trauma counseling right after being involved in car accidents, it was shown that their long-term recovery was adversely affected” (p. 182).

“A battalion chief in a large metropolitan fire and rescue agency, writing about the ascendance of the CISD movement in his field, noted a comment made decades earlier by a hook and ladder captain. ‘We used to have steel men and wooden wagons; now we have steel wagons and wooden men.’ He is one of an increasing number of people who are expressing concern that such procedures undermine the natural support and adaptation that keeps those with jobs like firefighting resilient. Adding support to this concern is the growing scientific literature that finds that the debriefing movement appears to have no appreciable preventive or palliative effect, and may, in fact, be responsible for an iatrogenic effect of causing the problems it claims to treat” (p. 184).

“When people who have suffered major traumas are studied, almost half seem not to experience intense anxiety, depression or grief after the loss. And over the years, the roll-with-the-punches people are found to remain well adjusted and healthy. [James] Pennabaker, critical of this simplistic approach [e.g., pop grief counseling] says: ‘Not everyone progresses through stages in grieving or coping. In fact, as many as half of all adults may face torture, divorce, the loss of a loved one, or other catastrophe and not exhibit any major sign of depression or anxiety. By definition, then, a substantial number of people may not benefit from attempts to influence their coping strategies’” (p. 207).

“Another researcher, George Bonanno, a clinical psychologist at Columbia University, offers his empirical analysis of the so-called grief-work hypothesis: the widely held assumption that venting negative emotions and ‘telling your story’ are necessary for regaining mental health. So far, his experiments have yielded intriguingly counterintuitive results, suggesting that grief-stricken people who express intense negative emotions when discussing their loss appear to do worse in the long term, than those that keep it in. ‘There’s really no evidence that these things are effective--and there’s even some to suggest that they can actually be detrimental,’ says Bonanno” (pp. 207, 208).

“Project DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) reached an estimated 26 million US students at a cost in excess of $1 billion in its first decade. And it continues despite a growing mass of evidence that it does not work. Reporting on a ten-years follow-up, researchers concluded that DARE has no long-term effect on drug use or drug attitudes. Curiously, it was even found to have a negative effect on students’ self-esteem with those exposed to DARE having lower self-esteem ten years later. ... It seems that, whatever the results, addiction treatment is identifiably a business that ignores its failures. In fact its failures lead to more business. Its technology, based on continued recovering, presumes relapses. Recidivism is used as an argument for further funding rather than as evidence of an ineffective treatment” (pp. 214, 215).

“The Psychology Industry operates a powerful technology of victim-making. Sometimes the evoked emotionality of the users is mistaken for authenticity, and the emphatic statements of the psychologists for expertise; however, what their actions reflect is a simplistic process that ignores the individuality of people, the intricacies of thoughts and feelings, and the mysteries of the darker side of life” (p. 226).

“Put simply, the Psychology Industry considers and treats people as children who, regardless of age, experience, education or status must be protected, guided, sheltered, excused and disciplined” (p. 268).

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