Bent Science and Bad Medicine: The Medical Profession, Moral Entrepreneurship and Social Control

Disrupted Physician

IMG_9005The Medical Profession, Moral Entrepreneurship, and Social Control

Sociologist Stanley Cohen  used the term “”moral panic” to characterize the amplification of deviance by the media, the public, and agents of social control.1  Labeled as being outside the central core values of consensual society, the deviants in the designated group are perceived as posing a threat to both the values of society and society itself.   Belief in the seriousness of the situation justifies intolerance and unfair treatment of the accused.   The evidentiary standard is lowered.

Howard Becker describes the role of “moral entrepreneurs,” who crusade for making and enforcing rules that benefit their own interests by bringing them to the attention of the public and those in positions of power and authority under the guise of righting a society evil. 2

And according to cultural theorist Stuart Hall, the media obtain their information from the primary definers of social…

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4 thoughts on “Bent Science and Bad Medicine: The Medical Profession, Moral Entrepreneurship and Social Control

  1. I’m a pharmacist and would like to reblog this if you have a version of under a thousand words, or if you would simply like to compose another version that is between 600 and 1,000 words, I’ll run it as a guest blog.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Indeed- the target is not ASAM but some of the practices and policies espoused by certain hierarchies within ASAM such as those written in the ASAM white paper on drug testing and those regarding “professional health programs.” Many of these practices and policies are indefensible and represent both bad science and bad policy. When this was written ABAM certification had not yet been accepted by the ABMS. The recent acceptance as a “specialty” does not change any of the arguments as is analogous to certain political events. Bad science is bad science and bad policy is bad policy. That is what needs to be addressed and debated. There are many many good people in ASAM with the right mind and the right heart as is the case with most organized entities. But policy and science needs to be addressed specifically and directly.


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