Wondering about madness again:
There is a book about how to diagnose mental illness called the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual put out by the American Psychiatric Society.  Version 5 is coming out soon.  Not everybody is going to be impressed.  (David Dobbs A Very Sad Story NATURE vol. 497 no. 7447 May 2, 2013 page 36 reviewing Gary Greenberg The Book of Woe: The DSM and the Unmaking of Psychiatry Blue Rider 2013)

For instance Asperger’s syndrome appears to be going out.  It is (no I haven’t read the book) a condition marked by difficulty forming relationships with other people.  My impression is that it is on the rise.  The new criteria is expected not only to eliminate the term and sweep the patients with it into different categories, but maybe half of the patients will not find a category.  The first problem is that they will then lose some health benefits.

But my low suspicious mind senses more.  Back in 2011 I was at a fertility convention when it was announced that the UN was lowering the “normal” range of sperm counts … again.  In other words sperm counts have been steadily falling the world over.  But by moving the goal posts, so to speak, the UN was avoiding having to announce a sperm count crisis. 

I was in the audience and, in what seems in retrospect to be pure cowardice, I failed to stand and challenge them. 

So now they are doing something similar with Asperger’s, obscuring the troubling trend by changing definitions. 

They may need a new diagnostic category for people who think like me. 

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