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Tags 2020 elections , anti-depressants , marianne williamson , presidential candidates

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Old 26th July 2019, 05:30 PM   #1
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Marianne Williamson - Antidepressants Are Overprescribed for Normal Human Despair

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article...ntidepressants

"Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson told BuzzFeed News’ AM to DM that she believes antidepressants are overprescribed by doctors and that they aren’t needed to treat situations she categorized as instances of “normal human despair” instead of a mental illness."

this should go over well
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Old 26th July 2019, 06:43 PM   #2
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How did she end up running for president and not running a crystal shop in Sedona, Arizona?
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Old 26th July 2019, 07:59 PM   #3
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She has a good heart.
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Old 26th July 2019, 08:03 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Travis View Post
How did she end up running for president and not running a crystal shop in Sedona, Arizona?
As I understand it, she's using the proceeds from her crystal shop to fund her run.

She's a nut, but I am glad she's running for president. There need to be more people on that fringe, to stretch the Overton Window out a bit in that direction.
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Old 26th July 2019, 08:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Venom View Post
She has a good heart.
And a poor mind.
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Old 26th July 2019, 08:32 PM   #6
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I agree she's a nut in many respects. But on this specific idea, she's not far wrong. Americans are far too likely to run for some sort of psychotherapy, pharmacological or otherwise, to treat every little psychological "ouchie." Steve Salerno put it very well in his book "SHAM. How the Self-Help Movement Made America Helpless" (Crown, 2005, p. 141): "Today, as never before...given the genuinely apocalyptic threats unfolding around us, Americans have an obligation to themselves, their families, and society to quit whining, stop comparing notes on who is more diseased, addicted, or dysfunctional, and just get down to business."
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Old 26th July 2019, 08:44 PM   #7
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I'm not a fan of the "over prescribed" narrative since I've seen several people deny their own obvious mental illness until they met untimely early deaths. The idea that maybe some people being too cautious weighed against "I've got no problem" while clearly engaged in constant suicide idealization until one day they actually do it....well I break on the give them pills side.
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Old 26th July 2019, 10:15 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Travis View Post
I'm not a fan of the "over prescribed" narrative since I've seen several people deny their own obvious mental illness until they met untimely early deaths. The idea that maybe some people being too cautious weighed against "I've got no problem" while clearly engaged in constant suicide idealization until one day they actually do it....well I break on the give them pills side.
And I've seen normal people who drop into a bought with depression change for the worse in the long term, affecting their own lives as well as those around them due to eager to give prescriptions when other methods might have worked better. We all have personal anecdotes that we can reference, but I don't think this is a over the top statement.

It might come down to the specific drug prescribed at any given point, but I do understand your point of view. I have never been seriously depressed for any long period of time, but experiencing a short window where I was changed my perspective on those in which this is an ongoing issue.
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Old 26th July 2019, 10:44 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by applecorped View Post
https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article...ntidepressants

"Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson told BuzzFeed News’ AM to DM that she believes antidepressants are overprescribed by doctors and that they aren’t needed to treat situations she categorized as instances of “normal human despair” instead of a mental illness."

Her crystals aside - in this case she seems to have a valid point:

Quote:
"For patients with depression, if you narrow down to those who have a biologically-based depressive sub-type, the antidepressants are distinctly effective," he says.
"For example, biological depression or melancholia shows a 60 per cent response to medication, compared to only a 10 per cent response to placebo. If, however, you include other depressive disorders with no primary biological basis—as occurs, if not dominates, in most studies—antidepressants appear to be ineffective."
Antidepressant efficacy is the new fake news (MedicalXpress, Aug. 2, 2018)
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Old 26th July 2019, 10:46 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Travis View Post
I'm not a fan of the "over prescribed" narrative since I've seen several people deny their own obvious mental illness until they met untimely early deaths. The idea that maybe some people being too cautious weighed against "I've got no problem" while clearly engaged in constant suicide idealization until one day they actually do it....well I break on the give them pills side.

You are not at all worried about side effects? Caution isn't relevant in that respect?
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx

Last edited by dann; 26th July 2019 at 10:48 PM.
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Old 26th July 2019, 10:54 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Her crystals aside - in this case she seems to have a valid point:
You need to be careful interpreting psych treatments. If 40% weren't helped you don't know if it's because there is a different cause and said meds don't have the right mechanism of action.

The brain and the immune systems are complicated. And you can add genes/viruses causing cancer to that. We don't have all the diagnoses and treatments yet. That doesn't mean you need to sing Kum ba yah around a campfire. It means we need more research.
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Old 26th July 2019, 10:56 PM   #12
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I'll take my normal human despair without antidepressants, thank you.

And I'll take it without platitude advice from a life coach.
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Old 26th July 2019, 11:28 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Apathia View Post
I'll take my normal human despair without antidepressants, thank you.

And I'll take it without platitude advice from a life coach.
I think that's great.

It doesn't work for everyone. If I don't take my antidepressants, I find myself crying for no reason among other symptoms.

Not everyone is depressed to the same degree and in the same way. If one doesn't need meds, they shouldn't be prescribed for them.
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Old 27th July 2019, 12:09 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
I think that's great.

It doesn't work for everyone. If I don't take my antidepressants, I find myself crying for no reason among other symptoms.

Not everyone is depressed to the same degree and in the same way. If one doesn't need meds, they shouldn't be prescribed for them.
I wasn't speaking of clinical depression. That is a matter for meds.

I'm not sure what Williamson meant by "normal." Usually the life coach and spiritual advisor crowd want to tell anyone to enlighten up and get off their meds. I've seen people under New Age and meditation guru influence go off their meds to horrible and tragic results.
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Old 27th July 2019, 01:23 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
You need to be careful interpreting psych treatments. If 40% weren't helped you don't know if it's because there is a different cause and said meds don't have the right mechanism of action.

The brain and the immune systems are complicated. And you can add genes/viruses causing cancer to that. We don't have all the diagnoses and treatments yet. That doesn't mean you need to sing Kum ba yah around a campfire. It means we need more research.

Notice that she doesn't tell you to get off your meds. Nor does she advocate less research.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 27th July 2019, 04:11 AM   #16
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Despair and depression must be hard for some people to differentiate
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Old 27th July 2019, 05:11 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Apathia View Post
I'll take my normal human despair without antidepressants, thank you.

And I'll take it without platitude advice from a life coach.
As I always say...life is meant to be endured, not enjoyed.
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Old 27th July 2019, 06:47 AM   #18
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Life is not meant to be anything.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 27th July 2019, 06:55 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
She's a nut, but I am glad she's running for president. There need to be more people on that fringe, to stretch the Overton Window out a bit in that direction.
In the woo direction? Why? How could that possibly be a good thing?
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Old 27th July 2019, 07:12 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Apathia View Post
I wasn't speaking of clinical depression. That is a matter for meds.

I'm not sure what Williamson meant by "normal." Usually the life coach and spiritual advisor crowd want to tell anyone to enlighten up and get off their meds. I've seen people under New Age and meditation guru influence go off their meds to horrible and tragic results.
Far be it for me to defend her. That said, Williamson should be criticized -- or not -- for the positions she actually takes, as opposed to what we may expect as typical from new age types.
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Old 27th July 2019, 07:34 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
Far be it for me to defend her. That said, Williamson should be criticized -- or not -- for the positions she actually takes, as opposed to what we may expect as typical from new age types.
Reading the Buzzfeed article, it seems that railing against anti-depressants and the pharmaceutical industry is one of her hobby horses.

Quote:
Williamson also appeared to agree with a tweet claiming antidepressants have played a role in the motivation behind mass shootings, suggesting they influenced the attacker in the 2017 Las Vegas shooting.
So that's a claim that antidepressants cause mass shootings. I doubt there's any truth to it, although it's conceivable that mass shooters might be more likely to have been prescribed antidepressants at some point in their lives. Whether that's been researched properly, I don't know.
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Old 27th July 2019, 08:22 AM   #22
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Old 27th July 2019, 10:02 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
As I always say...life is meant to be endured, not enjoyed.
But with a little bit of twisted humor, despair can be enjoyed (just a little bit).
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Old 27th July 2019, 10:06 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Her crystals aside - in this case she seems to have a valid point:
I was thinking the same thing. I'm not a fan of how she phrased the point, and given her anti-pharma history, I doubt she thinks about this issue the way I do, but there's nothing inherently ridiculous about the idea that a lot of people are depressed for reasons that have nothing to do with biologically-based depression.

A lot of people these days seem to be depressed because of a general sense of alienation, meaninglessness, and absence of direction. Late capitalism has done a number on how a lot of people see their place in society, and it's not hard to see how many people have been trying to cope with that lately. Millennials are getting into astrology, fad diets, and lifestyle trends to find meaning. Some feel like climate change has gotten so bad, there's no hope. Pseudoscience like anti-vax and flat earth have grown because people crave the community those movements offer. MLMs are growing for the same reason. Figures like Jordan Peterson and Stefan Molyneaux has grown popular among young white men who feel like society is being taken from them. There has been a global rise in far-right politics driven by figures who promise to give people back their identity.

Now, I don't know if I would call that "normal human despair," but I've seen clear trends indicating that tons of people alive right now feel depressed about a variety of things in their life that biology doesn't have a lot to do with. And I think it's really important that some of these things start being addressed, because otherwise, people are going to keep coping in seriously unhealthy ways. That being sad, I don't think Marianne is the right person to talk about it; as a new age spiritual leader, she's kind of the problem, as far as I'm concerned, she doesn't seem to offer any meaningful solutions, and some of her criticisms seem to come from a "pharma bad" ideology. To me, this is just another example of her saying something that sounds good superficially, but without any really substance behind it.
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Old 27th July 2019, 10:19 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
Far be it for me to defend her. That said, Williamson should be criticized -- or not -- for the positions she actually takes, as opposed to what we may expect as typical from new age types.
Yes. Very much so. All she said was that the meds are over prescribed.

I got fried once myself for saying that. A mental health professional got quite angry with me. Though after she had deep fired me for my ignorance and insensitivity, she herself said the meds were often prescribed inappropriately.
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Old 27th July 2019, 11:47 AM   #26
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the justifying is impressive and expected. Good thing she wasn't a Republican
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Old 27th July 2019, 11:55 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by applecorped View Post
Despair and depression must be hard for some people to differentiate
Don't they belong together? It doesn't seem possible to have depression and not experience despair. Or despair without depression.
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Old 28th July 2019, 07:27 AM   #28
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I'm sure Brooke Shields agrees with Marianne Williamson or not
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Old 28th July 2019, 08:20 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by applecorped View Post
the justifying is impressive and expected. Good thing she wasn't a Republican
I don't see any justifying. What in Odin's name are you referring to?

Edited by jsfisher:  <snip> Removed Rule 0 violation.
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Old 29th July 2019, 09:08 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by thines View Post
I agree she's a nut in many respects. But on this specific idea, she's not far wrong. Americans are far too likely to run for some sort of psychotherapy, pharmacological or otherwise, to treat every little psychological "ouchie." Steve Salerno put it very well in his book "SHAM. How the Self-Help Movement Made America Helpless" (Crown, 2005, p. 141): "Today, as never before...given the genuinely apocalyptic threats unfolding around us, Americans have an obligation to themselves, their families, and society to quit whining, stop comparing notes on who is more diseased, addicted, or dysfunctional, and just get down to business."
Yep only scum lets apocalyptic threats get them down. They should just accept the futility of life and despair.
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Old 29th July 2019, 09:53 AM   #31
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Williamson is polling at a whopping 0% (if she is even included on the poll at all). She is only a candidate in the most literal sense. Practically speaking, she's nobody at all.

Don't really see the election as a good reason to give her a platform. She's a crank using the primary to elevate her personal brand.
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Old 29th July 2019, 12:11 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
She's a crank using the primary to elevate her personal brand.
So was Trump, until he wasn't.

Marianne actually kind of scares me in a way than none of the other non-frontrunners do. She already has a cultish following (thanks to the support of Oprah) and knows how to use the kind of language that tons of Americans already get behind. Given enough exposure and legitimacy by the media, she could easily become a major force. I'm really, really happy that doesn't seem to be happening the way it did with Trump.
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Old 29th July 2019, 12:34 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
So was Trump, until he wasn't.

Marianne actually kind of scares me in a way than none of the other non-frontrunners do. She already has a cultish following (thanks to the support of Oprah) and knows how to use the kind of language that tons of Americans already get behind. Given enough exposure and legitimacy by the media, she could easily become a major force. I'm really, really happy that doesn't seem to be happening the way it did with Trump.
I dunno. "The kind of language that tons of Americans already get behind" covers a broad spectrum of language.

There's the crypto-racist, crypto-fascist language that supposedly appeals to so many Trump voters.

Then there's the peace, love, and cooperation language that Willamson seems to be using. The presidential election is about rallying enough Americans behind one message or another. Rejecting Wiliamson's message because it appeals to a lot of Americans seems unrealistic and anti-practical.
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Old 29th July 2019, 01:02 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I dunno. "The kind of language that tons of Americans already get behind" covers a broad spectrum of language.

There's the crypto-racist, crypto-fascist language that supposedly appeals to so many Trump voters.

Then there's the peace, love, and cooperation language that Willamson seems to be using. The presidential election is about rallying enough Americans behind one message or another. Rejecting Wiliamson's message because it appeals to a lot of Americans seems unrealistic and anti-practical.
Wait where is that even coming from? I'm not "rejecting Williamson's message," I'm just pointing out that Marianne has a lot of qualities that could make her a popular figure, and that it might not be smart to label her as a wacko that no one could possibly take seriously. That's why I was using the abstract language; I (hopefully) obviously wasn't comparing the two ideologically, just in terms of her potential to gain the kind of cult following Trump did.
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Old 29th July 2019, 01:18 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by wasapi View Post
Don't they belong together? It doesn't seem possible to have depression and not experience despair. Or despair without depression.
I'm not sure they do. To me, it seems entirely possible to experience despair without also experiencing the clinical condition of depression.

I think that healthy people can and should experience the entire spectrum of human emotion, both highs and lows, when appropriate.

Depression in the sense that we're talking about here - a psychological infirmity requiring medical treatment - is a condition of experiencing the low end of the spectrum more or less continuously, as a baseline condition. It's not a temporary state of mind, caused by a healthy reaction to a real circumstance. And it's not a state of mind that responds fully to positive circumstances that would otherwise cause temporary and appropriate elation.

If one is struggling with despair, and with recovering from despair, one might treat it similarly to depression, with anti-depressants and other treatments. But these would be temporary, in the understanding that the person will hopefully soon return to their normal, healthy state. Actual depression is more of a chronic illness that requires ongoing mitigation, in order for the sufferer to enjoy the kind of life that most people think of as "normal".
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Old 29th July 2019, 01:19 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by ArchSas View Post
Wait where is that even coming from? I'm not "rejecting Williamson's message," I'm just pointing out that Marianne has a lot of qualities that could make her a popular figure, and that it might not be smart to label her as a wacko that no one could possibly take seriously. That's why I was using the abstract language; I (hopefully) obviously wasn't comparing the two ideologically, just in terms of her potential to gain the kind of cult following Trump did.
Ah, sorry. I misunderstood. I read "cult following" to imply a rejection of Williamson on that basis. My bad.
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Old 29th July 2019, 01:25 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Williamson is polling at a whopping 0% (if she is even included on the poll at all). She is only a candidate in the most literal sense. Practically speaking, she's nobody at all.

Don't really see the election as a good reason to give her a platform. She's a crank using the primary to elevate her personal brand.
I agree. Just reviewing some of her quotes about angels was enough to reaffirm that for me.


There is, I believe, an urgent need for humanity in the next election. Something entirely different then we have seen in this current president. But not Williamson.
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Old 29th July 2019, 01:33 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Williamson is polling at a whopping 0% (if she is even included on the poll at all). She is only a candidate in the most literal sense. Practically speaking, she's nobody at all.
I disagree. According to the DNC (as reported here by NPR), practically speaking she meets the basic requirements to be "somebody":
All "qualified" candidates are eligible to participate. A DNC official said a candidate could qualify by meeting one of two criteria:
1. Garner at least 1 percent support in three separate polls

2. Meet the grassroots fundraising threshold, which requires obtaining 65,000 unique donors and a minimum of 200 donors per state in at least 20 states
She's qualified for the debates, that makes her at least somebody.

Last edited by theprestige; 29th July 2019 at 02:13 PM.
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Old 29th July 2019, 01:48 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by wasapi View Post
I agree. Just reviewing some of her quotes about angels was enough to reaffirm that for me.
I went though a ton of her most "ridiculous" tweets (found on various compilations usually classifying them as such) and I honestly didn't see much that was more "out there" than the kinds of things most religious or "spiritual" Americans consume regularly. Lots of politicians, too, for that matter. For example, "Visualize the oil spill plugged. Close your eyes for 5 minutes and see angels coming over it, filling it with sane and sacred thoughts" comes up a lot. Yeah, it sounds weird and funny, but it's really not much different than saying you'll pray for a situation to get better.

Shortly after reading one of those lists, I read several of Marianne's tweets out loud to my girlfriend, who grew up in a very Catholic midwest household; her first response was "Wow, my mom would love that stuff. She loves reading quotes like that about Christianity and Jesus, so without the crystals, she would be all over that." Not anything about how funny or crazy they were, that it sounds exactly like how her mom (again, very Catholic and even works at a church) likes to experience her religion. That really shocked me, and made me start thinking about Marianne completely differently. Of course, that's a lot of the appeal of new age - you can say a lot of things that sound good and are vague enough to appeal to a lot of people. Granted, she does say a lot of things that are flat out whacky, but lots of people out there are really into certain kinds of whacky.

Originally Posted by wasapi View Post
There is, I believe, an urgent need for humanity in the next election. Something entirely different then we have seen in this current president. But not Williamson.
I'll absolutely agree about that. She's a typical new age huckster with a lot of bad ideas, and I don't want her to be able to claim concepts like love in politics as her own brand. Hopefully, she'll have trouble visualizing enough angels to accomplish that.

Last edited by ArchSas; 29th July 2019 at 02:10 PM.
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Old 29th July 2019, 03:58 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Williamson is polling at a whopping 0% (if she is even included on the poll at all). She is only a candidate in the most literal sense. Practically speaking, she's nobody at all.

Don't really see the election as a good reason to give her a platform. She's a crank using the primary to elevate her personal brand.
THIS.
But because she is a Democrat some people here are going to defend her idiocies.
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