Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Army's spiritual fitness test

This story is absolutely astounding, the type of thing out of a Huxley horror story, but real. The intro:

"An experimental, Army mental-health, fitness initiative designed by the same psychologist whose work heavily influenced the psychological aspects of the Bush administration's torture program is under fire by civil rights groups and hundreds of active-duty soldiers. They say it unconstitutionally requires enlistees to believe in God or a 'higher power' in order to be deemed 'spiritually fit' to serve in the Army."

I know some of you also appreciate Chris Hedges, quoted in the article. Regarding positive psychology he feels that "the practice has thrived in the corporate world where the refusal to consider negative outcomes resulted in the current economic crisis." He says:

"Positive psychology, which claims to be able to engineer happiness and provides the psychological tools for enforcing corporate conformity, is to the corporate state what eugenics was to the Nazis. Positive psychology is a quack science that throws a smoke screen over corporate domination, abuse and greed. Those who fail to exhibit positive attitudes, no matter the external reality, are seen as maladjusted and in need of assistance. Their attitudes need correction. Academics who preach [the benefits of positive psychology] are awash in corporate grants."

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