Viagra for the Mind??!!?!?!!!??
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Viagra for the Mind??!!?!?!!!??

Anyone heard of Provigil? It is a narcolepsy drug that, when taken by non-narcoleptics, is said to significantly improve concentration and memory function, and raise IQ. Some have dubbed it "Viagra for the mind."

Johann Hari has written an interesting essay about his experience with Provigil. "It’s not an amphetamine or stimulant," he explains. "It doesn’t make you high, or wired. It seems to work by restricting the parts of your brain that make you sluggish or sleepy. No significant negative effects have been discovered."

Here he describes his experience while on the drug:
I picked up a book about quantum physics and super-string theory I have been meaning to read for ages, for a column I'm thinking of writing. It had been hanging over me, daring me to read it. Five hours later, I realised I had hit the last page. I looked up. It was getting dark outside. I was hungry. I hadn't noticed anything, except the words I was reading, and they came in cool, clear passages; I didn't stop or stumble once.

Perplexed, I got up, made a sandwich — and I was overcome with the urge to write an article that had been kicking around my subconscious for months. It rushed out of me in a few hours, and it was better than usual....The next morning I woke up and felt immediately alert. Normally it takes a coffee and an hour to kick-start my brain; today I'm ready to go from the second I rise. And so it continues like this, for five days: I inhale books and exhale articles effortlessly. My friends all say I seem more contemplative, less rushed — which is odd, because I'm doing more than normal. One sixty-something journalist friend says she remembers taking Benzadrine in the sixties to get through marathon articles, but she'd collapse after four or five says and need a long, long sleep. I don't feel like that. I keep waiting for an exhausted crash, and it doesn't seem to come.

Hhhhmmm... any thoughts out there on something like this?

Here is a negative piece from the LA Times on Provigil... it is particularly critical of the drug-maker's direct-marketing campaign on television, in magazines and through direct mailers, etc.

Again, any thoughts or knowledge out there on this?

It does seem a little Aldous Huxley-an to me, like soma in Brave New World.

WHO Guidelines for the Treatment of Malaria, 2006
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These guidelines are based on a review of current evidence and are developed in accordance with WHO’s standard methodology.

Philosophy in the Spam Filter
I'm preparing to visit family, and I'm uncertain what internet access I'll have until after New Year's. But there will be some posts that I've pre-scheduled.

In the meantime, I was cleaning out spam that had been caught in my spam filter and found some of it rather funny; I'd heard about spammers using bots that have algorithms to make comments more relevant, or more relevant-like, but I hadn't come across them before. And what I discovered is that viagra is apparently relevant to all philosophical problems, albeit in a slightly risqué way. But some of them are amusing, and it serves as a way to revisit some old posts.

On a 2007 post about testimonial injustice:

Agree, It's anoying when some people 20 years ago, disapproved the use of the generic cheap cialis because was against the nature and bla bla and now this product helps a lot of people around the world. Thanks for sharing.

While it's certainly not true that taking viagra is, as such, unnatural I'm not so sure this is true of every intention with which it is used. But that's only loosely related to testimonial injustice, if at all.

On a 2008 post about appeal to intuitions in philosophy:

I think it is convenient that we trust our intuitions because most of the time they are warning symbols. I have noticed that since I am taking viagra online I have more intuitions.

Since the point of the post is that there is no good account of what counts as an intuition, I suppose one could call them intuitions; and I suppose they are 'warning symbols'. But, of course, there's no particular reason to think more intuitions are a good thing.

On a 2008 post that quotes Aquinas on two kinds of division:

You're right, I think the species, always the members of the division, are on a par in the point, and you can find more information from Generic Viagra and then you can fix this blog. By the way I do work in early modern philosophy, like you do.

I suppose that's one way to respond to the currently bad job market; but who knew that generic viagra provided information on medieval logic? I bet you didn't know that.

On a 2008 post about Virginia Woolf's famous claim that she had to kill the angel in the house:

I liked the headline above, and I agree with you about the womens. I do not believe that you know, maybe you can share things from Generic Viagra and that would be great. It becomes not merely art that they can inspire but the state to which they are expected to aspire.

So viagra becomes not merely art that they can inspire but the state to which they are expected to aspire? That sounds a bit disturbing. But it does tie in with occasional feminist worries about the potential dangers of a Viagra culture.

On a 2007 post about the virtue of epieikia:

First of all, it is pretty important to define justice since several points of view because in my opinion it is not fair to have someone in jail because of misdemeanor. I think it is so cruel that thy can not take viagra online.

Well, that isn't too far from epieikia, of course; but it's a stronger position than I think most people would argue.

Of course, there are some non-philosophy ones. On a 2008 post about deus ex machina and children's stories:

I like Narnia because it is a mix of fantastic elements all creating a scary story out of innocence! I remember I read the last book and I couldn't stop until I finished it! I had to take much viagra online.

Also a bit disturbing; not my response to The Last Battle at all. He seems to have misunderstood the point of "further up and further in."

SSWAHS = SWSLHN + SLHN and the Medicare Locals - 21
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SSWAHS = SWSLHN + SLHN and the Medicare Locals - 21

Socartes urges all members of the Southern Highlands community to respond to the future of their health needs by supporting the submission by the SWSHC to DoHA for provision of the South West Sydney Medicare Local. You are encouraged to write to the Federal Minister responsible for the Department of Health and Ageing.

A message from the South West Sydney Health Coalition (SWSHC) - Medicare Locals

What is the solution?

In December 2010, the Australian Government and NSW Government agreed on the boundaries of non-hospital family medicine organisations (Medicare Locals).

There will be one urban, and one rural structure covering the south west Sydney-Macarthur- Southern Highlands region. Together, these two structures will form a Medicare Local.

The SWSHC is a broad alliance of community organisations, health organisations and family doctors leading the transition to a Medicare Local in south west Sydney. The SWSHC supports the structure agreed described in the Medicare Local boundaries:

1. An urban South Western Sydney organisation, based on the amalgamation of the existing Bankstown, Fairfield- Liverpool Divisions, and the urban edge of the Macarthur Division of General Practice.

This organisation will provide services to the urban communities in the Bankstown to Camden corridor, with its large proportion of ethnically diverse residents, and economic disadvantage.

This incorporates the Bankstown, Fairfield, Liverpool, Macarthur and Camden LGAs.

2. A rural Southern Highlands Regional Network based on the current rural section of Macarthur, and the Southern Highlands Divisions of General Practice.

This organisation will focus on provision of non-hospital health services to the rural areas south of Campbelltown and Camden LGAs to Bowral.

The rural Southern Highlands Regional Network will have a separate semi-autonomous local office situated in the Southern Highlands, to manage the specific needs of local families.

What can I do to help?

The South West Sydney Health Coalition now needs your help to secure a healthy future for families in Bankstown, Fairfield, Liverpool, Campbelltown and Camden.

The current round of changes to hospitals and family medicine have created tremendous opportunities for community, health social welfare organisations. Together, we now have a historic opportunity to influence the health of families in south west Sydney for many years into the future. Find out what you can do to shape the future now.

Central DoH&A Office postal address:

Department of Health & Ageing
(Medicare Locals)
GPO Box 9848,
Canberra ACT 2601, Australia

Woman claims Harrison County Jail is withholding husband's medications
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Woman claims Harrison County Jail is withholding husband's medications
Imagine taking six pills a day to manage your pain and having them taken away in a moment's notice. That's what one East Texas woman says the Harrison County jail did to her husband.

Read more on CBS 19

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