Talk:MKULTRA

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Led to Milton Keynes of course, which is a British "newtown" designed by persons obviously on something. They used to have concrete cows! Instead of using substances they made everywhere in MK look identical (think Stepford10) A rumour exists that the road system was designed to trap the unwary into staying there whether they wanted to or not. Sat-nav systems are rendered useless there. Toast& marmitechat 02:06, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

I went past Milton Keynes on a train once. Was pleased to be past it. AceMcWicked 02:13, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

[edit] "Conservative Editing"

So, I parodied the government's story that they really thought LSD would be an effective research subject for 20 years. This is obviously nonsense as they spent a great deal of time doing other things and spent a lot of time publicizing the LSD research. If you would like to alter the material, you are welcome to, however, the primary source I cited, as he is one of the few historians in the country who has extensively covered the subject, is very liberal, very opposed to torture, and even went so far as to imply that the torture seen in Abu Ghirab is the fruits of MKULTRA research (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_W._McCoy). I assume because I made a joke about "tax dollars spent on looking at cats," that I must be militantly against wasting money on fruitless research? Any half-wit could clearly see that LSD is not a promising method for mind-control. There are only two conclusions that can be drawn from the MKULTRA results that were discussed by the CIA - either they were utterly incompetent at the time, or they were lying/obfuscating the true nature of the research. Put yourself in the position of a researcher... how much time and money would you spend on one single psychotropic compound before you were convinced it was not effective at controlling minds? The article as it was before my edits concentrated ONLY on LSD research, which is not remotely what most MKULTRA finances were spent on due to the fact that, as I stated earlier, the CIA does not hire researchers that are so incompetent as to spend 20 years doing LSD to discover it doesn't control minds.

In short, just because the CIA has been engaged in war crimes and unethical human experimentation for many decades, doesn't mean you should censor it due to the fact that it is "too conservative" to say so. (Ironically, it's usually the far left that is ostensibly opposed to torturing people). I strongly suggest reading Dr. McCoy's book, "A Question of Torture," given that it elucidates the actual nature of the MKULTRA programs which were actually quite a serious endeavor by the U.S. Government and, as silly as it makes them look talking about LSD research, they engaged in a number of other avenues of research which are both far more practical and likely effective. Yes, MKULTRA is a hotbed for conspiracy theories, but, it also was an incredibly serious program involving hundreds of millions of dollars, a significant portion of academia, as well as other institutions around the nation. It is extremely foolish and simply intellectually dishonest to simply dismiss such an endeavor as MKULTRA due to the fact that a bunch of right wing nut cases attribute to it nearly every absurdity they can conjure up. A thing doesn't become false because a large portion of people believe false or completely un-evidenced things about it.

Dr. Alfred McCoy even writes for Huffington occasionally - I'm not really sure why you believe my citing him is "conservative." (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alfred-w-mccoy/how-americas-wars-are-sys_b_355798.html) Bloomingdedalus (talk) 03:24, 8 January 2014 (UTC)

Any point you are trying to make in the above post is rendered incomprehensible by what, I can only assume, is an attempt at stream of consciousness writing. Your edit is poor, the one reference you are using is a book that none of us have access too. Putting that aside, you are extrapolating beyond the available evidence (which is limited because of the destruction of most of the relevant documentation by the CIA). You might believe that the CIA wouldn't be so incompetent to focus on LSD, but the extant evidence begs otherwise. I am not aware what special insight you have into this program, but given your history of tendentious editing I would suggest you come back with some iron-clad, readily accessible sources for what you are saying.
Also, stop editing your own talk posts constantly - one or two for spelling/grammatical errors is fine, but talk posts aren't meant to evolve; it will make talk pages impossible to understand. Tielec01 (talk) 04:22, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
My apologies on talk posts. I am not contradicting any mainstream established views on MKULTRA. Dr. McCoy's research is quite thorough and he is a prominent member of academia with a PhD in history. His book is well cited and it only contradicts the mainstream sensationalism about the LSD research by discussing the sub-projects which involved little LSD research. He is prominently cited on MKULTRA's Wikipedia page and the book is a history book. He states very clearly that it's his opinion that Abu Ghirab is a direct result of MKULTRA research due to the fact that the methods employed there are the same methods which were researched during MKULTRA. However, his coverage of the MKULTRA project is historical, sourced, and only opinionated in the sense that it could be more thorough and a little less "shock value" oriented in the sense that various subprojects are quickly combed through and summarized in a few paragraphs or less. However, given the sparse information about the program. I am not particularly certain how I can make a copyrighted book available for you to review for veracity - you can visit a library for that. You can also reference Wikipedia's article which incorporates this source. I was of the impression that this wiki made fun of woo, whether that is government woo or the woo the Alex Jones types come up with. When the government says "we spent 20 years and spent a billion dollars finding out whether LSD is good for mind control and it's not" - that sounds like woo to me - so I put a few jibes in there rhetorically because their argument is prima facie absurd, as I noted, to the point of being farcical. Dr. McCoy's book is well sourced, there isn't a single statement he makes other than in his concluding chapter and his introduction that is opinion. It's very much the work of a history professor, which is exactly what he is. I will revert my edit and remove statements that are clearly parody such as the joke about the CIA seeing a cat on LSD and stating that they were going to spend 20 years working on that - though I thought it was kind of funny. I'll readily admit I'm no historian, so I can't be certain that Dr. McCoy's own source work is credible, however, he does remain employed by a notable and accredited university and he did get a PhD from Yale, so I have trouble simply dismissing his work as "too against the mainstream to be true." I also am uncertain what I included that was particularly "against the mainstream consensus." The article as it has been reverted includes patently false information like that Ted Kaczinsky was dosed with LSD. On the contrary, he was subjected to an extended verbal and psychological abuse experiment that involved no drugs at all that I'm aware of or can find references to: (http://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/2000/06/chase.htm). It is true that I have some personal experience with government psychological torture methods, but I in no way have referenced those methods and relied, instead, on sourced materials by academic experts in their fields, and have cited everything except the comment about Midnight Climax which I can provide numerous citations for if it is desired. Bloomingdedalus (talk) 04:51, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
Here is another source refuting that Kaczinsky was subjected to drug experiments, but was instead subjected to psychological abuse experiments: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/mind-wars/201205/harvards-experiment-the-unabomber-class-62 And another source stating that it was a verbal abuse experiment: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/unabomber-decoded-did-harvard-study-fuel-rage/
Contrary to your claim that my edits contradict the mainstream view, the article as it is reflects a wholly ignorant view. Bloomingdedalus (talk) 05:00, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
Here is an extract from the wikipedia page:
"Early CIA efforts focused on LSD, which later came to dominate many of MKUltra's programs."
McCoy appears to have one reference on the wikipedia page (the book) and is mentioned twice - from a cursory glance he doesn't appear to disagree with the statement above. The information we have access to indicates that LSD was the largest avenue of research in the program, although other methods were extensively looked at to be sure.
I have no doubt that McCoy's work is solid - if you wanted to create a section detailing out the hypothesised link between American torture methods and the MKUltra I'm sure no-one would argue (assuming sourcing is solid). Stylistically there were problems with your edit too, for example you immediately stated that MKultra was not all about LSD with no prior mention of the drug on the page, but we can iron that out with some judicious copy-editing I'm sure. I'm not sure about Kaczinsky, perhaps someone with more experience will enlighten us? Tielec01 (talk) 05:09, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
I purposely left that out because I believe it's purely conjecture and "parallelist" interpretation - similar to Dr. Richard Carrier's view that Jesus was made up because he shares some aspects with mythological deities from other cultures. Simply because something contains a great deal of overlap doesn't mean that it necessarily springs from the same source (though it does appear that Dick Cheney possessed one of the manuals on interrogation produced during the MKULTRA years by the CIA). The reason I didn't include much on LSD is because I don't have much information about that avenue of research. McCoy's book hardly focuses on LSD at all. He talks about hypnosis, sensory deprivation, sexual abuse, electroshock, verbal abuse, physiological abuse (such as forced standing, sleep deprivation, etc), but hardly mentions LSD at all. This is probably because, well, LSD wasn't effective in the slightest and he only focused on things that actually had some "positive" (in the sense that they were affirmatively effective to varying degrees as torture/interrogation/psychological coercion techniques) results. The introductory paragraph, which I left largely untouched, mentioned LSD, though I was uncomfortable with how I followed that up with "they were not solely focused on LSD."
Here is a quote from the book which both vindicates your position that LSD was a major area of research, and my position that it was not the main area of research: "The CIA's "defensive" [meaning in response to Soviet mind control research] behavioral research soon culminated in the creation of its largest and most notorious mind-control program, MKUltra. In retrospect, this secret research moved through two distinct phases: first, esoteric, often bizarre experiments with hypnosis and hallucinogenic drugs, from 1950 to 1956; then, more conventional research into human psychology until 1963 when the agency compiled the fruits of this costly investigation in a definitive interrogation manual." The CIA's and the public's insistence on examining LSD research during the time period which was utterly silly from what I've read seems very "wooish" to me - so I threw in a few jokes about it because it really seems like it would, in quite short order, be dismissed as a promising avenue of research. In fact, it belies common sense to believe it would not be swiftly abandoned by any slightly competent scientist. For example, here is a publicized British test of LSD on soldiers showing that it produces massively inconsistent behaviors in individuals: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWodyapGNxI
It is true that a fair amount of documentation we have does involve LSD research. However, according to McCoy's work, studies into regular old sensory deprivation and other less esoteric aspects of human psychology commenced as early as 1951. I think it's pretty fair to make the statement that the emphasis on LSD was mostly a distracting but entertaining story (the "obfuscating stupidity" archetype) given that over half of the years that MKULTRA was active, drug use had mostly been abandoned as an area of research. I would love to read more books about MKUltra, and hence, reference someone other than McCoy, but they are almost non-existent from credible academic sources. Bloomingdedalus (talk) 05:59, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
To be fair, the vast majority of things presented in contemporary media, particularly in contemporary popular journalism, qualifies as "obfuscating stupidity," but that's probably a discussion for another day.
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