Skip to comments.Loughner a "textbook" case paranoid schizophrenic
Posted on 01/12/2011 12:26:57 PM PST by worst-case scenario
It wasn't long after news of the Tucson, Ariz., tragedy broke that the words "paranoid schizophrenic" entered the conversation. Armchair psychiatrists across the country looked at Jared Loughner -- 22, history of antisocial behavior, with a cache of rambling YouTube videos on government mind control -- and diagnosed him. But is there any truth to this? And if so, how does it help make sense of his horrific actions?
To try and untangle the influences that might lead one lone gunman to fire his Glock at a political rally, we turned to Dr. E. Fuller Torrey, respected psychiatrist and one of the foremost experts on paranoid schizophrenics. Torrey has written several books on the mental illness, including the bestselling classic "Surviving Schizophrenia." He is founder of the Treatment Advocacy Center in Virginia, a national nonprofit for the mentally ill.
Quite early in the news cycle, the media more or less diagnosed Jared Loughner as paranoid schizophrenic. Do you think that's accurate?
He's a textbook case. Most psychiatrists will tell you they need to examine a patient before diagnosing him, but this guy has all of the symptoms. He has the right age of onset. He has a deteriorating social course, as they say in the [DSM], social and occupational dysfunction. He has delusions, and they're pretty strange. It's common for schizophrenics to think people are trying to control their mind, but thinking the government is trying to control your grammar -- I've never heard that before. The real tip-off is the markedly disorganized speech, which you see in the rambling videos. This is the kind of disorganized speech that you virtually never get in any other condition. It's what we call pathognomonic of schizophrenia. That is, when you hear that symptom, it's "schizophrenia until proven otherwise." He's also got the affective flattening of emotion, which you see in that mug shot.
That was my first thought when I saw his YouTube video, but what do I know?
“Dave’s not here!”
Pot is not a good mix for a paranoid schizophrenic.
That was my first thought as well.
not too long ago he was calling his friends at 2am asking them if they were sitting outside his house. He pushed them away out of fear they were trying to kill him. Clearly he was paranoid.
Yet he was a contributor on Daily KOS and fitted right in.
Seriously, Leftist websites are great places to conceal pathognomoneia. Like hiding leaves in a forest.
It was obvious to me and I don’t even work in this field. The media and that idiot sheriff should be ashamed of themselves.
YEP....my sister has gone thru paranoid schizo phases...one time she wouldn’t eat at my home...”because I might poison her.” She is cut off from family because of her behavior. It’s not easy being a family member....believe me.
Isnt Salon a liberal website ???
I posted this Sunday but it’s worth a short excerpt.
Loughner posted on a board called abovetopsecret.com. Last July another member TOLD Loughner he was a schizophrenic and to seek help before hurting himself or others.
I’ve since gone back to see if this user posted any follow-ups and could find none. But it’s amazing to me that this one guy who never met Loughner and only “diagnosed” him via Loughner’s posts, was dead-on.
Below I have just one post of Loughner’s to give you a taste of the guy’s mental ability and then the exchange between the other (sane) member and Loughner:
Loughner Post -
Though shall wish the alien zombie away!
If this is a nightmare situation then hope that the alarm is set.
This is a nightmare situation.
Hope the alarm is set.
This next one is a statement by another user, mordant1, to erad3 (erad3=Loughner), telling him to seek help. Then a response from erad3 (date is July 11, 2010):
(mordant1) I have maybe made a mistake is my assessment of your avatar, because for that to be the case, you’d have to be at least somewhat rational, but I think youre frankly schizophrenic, and no that’s not an amateur opinion and not intended as an uninformed or insulting remark, you clearly make no sense and are unable to communicate. I really do care. Seek help before you hurt yourself or others or start taking your medications again, please. Maybe, it’d be better for some there be an infinite source of haldol or cogentin then fiat currency.
[edit on 11-7-2010 by mordant1]
reply by erad3 I can occasionally change the avatar into other stick figures for humor. I didn’t say anything about an amateur opinion from anyone. I enjoy the concern because of the misspellings of words that occur.
There’s trouble with misspelling of words in all posters. This is fine because of the Edit button. Don’t stereotype the misspellings of words ! The inductive argument is frightening for scholarly research. Ill get to the location of the currency in the next post. Thank you for the concern.
Many years ago, I lived upstairs from a woman and her elderly mother. The woman seemed a little odd but OK but we did not know them at all. Turned out, that was when the daughter was taking her meds.
One day, mom shows up at my door pleading for help. He daughter was off the meds and had held her mom prisoner for several hours. During the course of the next several hours, I had to be with the daughter to make sure the mom was going to be safe (the police were useless). Among other things, the daughter accused me of preventing her from driving by putting severed heads on the front seat of her car. She was serious and it wasn’t a rant. She knew it to be true and was trying to tell me reasonably that she knew about the whole thing.
Had she listened to Rush Limbaugh and thought he was telling her to imprison her mom, does that make him responsible for the woman’s acts? Insane has its own internal logic that reaches out and gets random stuff from the world and works it into the craziness. I just happened to be around so I got to be the severed heads guy.
“Isnt Salon a liberal website ???”
Most of the comments there continue to blindly insist that Sarah Palin or Glenn Beck made him do it, anyway.
Frankly some of the commenters are exhibiting the same type paranoia that schizophrenics do. They keep insisting on obviously untrue scenarios despite all evidence. They have their delusion and they won’t let go.
Are you sure? There was some original speculation that the killer was Daily Kos member BoyBlue who had worked for Giffords but recently said she was "now dead to me". That turned out to be incorrect. I haven't heard any other connection to Kos than that.
Confirms what I have always believed that the shooter not only has mental illness but I do believe demonic possession as well.
Confirms what Michael Savage has said, “liberalism is a mental disorder”.
I have a sister who has been a COMPLETE nightmare for me and my family since around 1985.
I believe you.
You’re right about that too. Another reason it should taken by prescription only.
Just occurred to me....are there support groups for the FAMILY members of Schizo’s....? I had never thought about that before...it might be useful...we’ve been dealing with this since about 1977
Right! Practising psychiatry without a patient should be a crime! How the hell does this jerk KNOW anything about Jared? It is all remote hearsay.
No true professional would ever do this. This guy is a QUACK!!!
My Schizo Sister is also OBSESSED with alcohol.
Not a good combo.
If she doesn’t have at least her one beer a day (usually 5 or so, she’s not that bad an alkie don’t you know) there will be major problems.
My mom is always “what am i gonna do” “Who can i talk to?”
I always tell her that maybe Al-Anon might be a start.
She doesn’t listen.
it’s been that way for 25 years now.
It’s practicaly ruined my own life.
Yes, it is, which is a testimony to how badly this episode has backfired on the left. It’s too easy for conservatives to use alternative information sources to quickly fix “the big lie,” and then make the left it.
Which is why there remains an abiding interest in suppressing internet and talk radio venues. The old game plan not workin’ so good. From their point of view.
...Did I say point? I meant harmless little fuzz ball. :)
Oops! should be:
“and then make the left OWN it”
The problem I see it is that as a society we’ve “defined deviancy down” to such a degree it’s increasingly harder to tell the paranoid schizos from the headbangers, or the Beavis/Butthead types, or the victims of BDS etc. etc. etc.
Paranoid Schizos have always been with us. The problem is that the mainstream is a hell of a lot nuttier than it used to be! So the paranoid schizos might be just that or they might just be tree hugging new agers or 911 Truthers or Bush Haters or Medical Marijuana users or or or - you get my point!
Sorry, was on long phone call. To answer your question - I’m not sure, so likely the KOS link is indeed incorrect.
Paranoid schizophrenic = typical liberal.
Very interesting, thanks for posting.
Wow. Just reading that exchange makes my stomach twist into a knot. Everything that Loughner wrote has that crazed “logic.” Creepy, but also sad.
Truly sorry to hear it. I have a cousin who is schizophrenic.
Sometimes it is just as hard to get family members into support groups like Al-Anon as it is toget the afflicted person to agree to help.
Quack? Probably not. Maybe he’s just a tad irresponsible. I am not a medical professional, but I’ve had occasion to work with people who were diagnosed schizophrenics, and I immediately picked up on the bizarre, disorganized verbal patterns. Going from that to a specific diagnosis is, as I said, irresponsible for a doctor, because their opinion is supposed to carry more weight. But the textual evidence is out there, public domain, so his opinion is not entirely without a basis in fact.
By analogy, if a plane crashes, the authoritative word on that particular crash has to come from the actual investigators after a thorough investigation, but thats not going to stop Fox or CNN from bringing in crash experts to give an opinion on whether that flock of geese that everybody saw get sucked into the engine was the cause of the crash. Whatever else it does make them, it doesnt make them quacks. Just sayin
Yep. That’s how it is. Sad thing to see.
How can you pretend to diagnose a human from hearsay? You have no way to assess the credibility of the evidence.
Whenever you read about airplane accidents, the vast majority observations are just plane nuts. As a pilot of many years it has never ceased to amaze me how many of the commenters are clueless.
There are some. This is an OK place to start:
Keep in mind there are different perspectives on treatment, and psychotropics can sometimes be little more than chemical lobotomies. Best to minimize the medication where possible, as there are some theories that suggest a correlation between excessive medication and a worsening of the long term prognosis. I’m talking young adult onset scenarios.
Loughner allegedly has a YouTube channel depicting the same verbal qualities. I’ve seen it myself. I know, I know, theoretically, it’s just an amazing coincidence of names and timing and content. Discovery would be necessary to set the proper foundation for use in court, but it’s not inadmissible hearsay just because the discovery hasn’t been done.
And those bits and pieces that really are hearsay are not automatically inadmissible either, as there are many exceptions to the hearsay rule. My evidence law prof thought the multiplicity of exceptions proved the uselessness of the rule, and that the jury should be allowed to hear everything and make up their own mind as to credibility.
As to the content, the thing about it is a sane person would actually have a hard time coming up with the verbal sequences produced by a sick mind. An orderly mind is not too good at producing genuine gobbledy-gook, even when it tries. That pattern on his YouTube channel feels just like what I am personally familiar with, and I am sure the doctor is using a much deeper reservoir of experience to form his opinion.
Sorry about the plane crash analogy. I had no idea you were a pilot. What were the chances? :)
Totally agree. The old joke is that it’s hard to tell the cellphone/bluetooth users from the schizophrenics. The new joke is that it’s hard to tell the leftists from the schizos.
Did you even read the doctor’s interview? Or do you just refuse all information that you think might come from a “liberal” website? Try reading the article and then see what you think.
Every side has its spin. Every side, out of necessity, publishes only a part of the facts - otherwise they’d be an encyclopedia. I read as many sources of info as I can, and collect knowledge from a wide variety of places. I figure that I can come to my own conclusions.
“Insane has its own internal logic that reaches out and gets random stuff from the world and works it into the craziness.”
I agree with you completely. I had to babysit a schizophrenic myself once (a relative.) He wasn’t paranoid, but he also had elaborate explanations of the hidden forces that were running the country. For him, it was all about UFOs and the return of Haley’s Comet. He also talked about how Ronald Reagan had actually been replaced by a duplicate.
It was as if he had picked bits and pieces of information and notable events out of the ether, and woven a storyline around them. It was arcane and made no sense to anyone but him - which to him was proof of his unrecognized genius.
Of course, for Uncle Mike, there was no “evildoer” to focus upon. If he’d been a true paranoiac, I wouldn’t have spent the afternoon watching him while his wife tried to make arrangements to have him committed. (It was pretty tough for her, since he wasn’t considered a danger to himself or others, and had no desire to commit himself.)