The dire need for systemic critique within psychedelic communities

Initially, COMPASS was a non-profit organization that espoused interest in establishing a psychedelic hospice center on the Isle of Man and solicited help from numerous psychedelic researchers. However, after engaging those researchers and receiving invaluable insight and knowledge, COMPASS announced that they were pivoting to a for-profit approach, focusing on treatment-resistant depression. 

There is unfortunately a complication which is to a surprising degree you can’t always trust what scientists say. It would be nice to think that politicians are the bad guys and scientists are the good guys and it’s just a matter of listening more to the scientists. Unfortunately, we know that scientists bring their own agendas to the table [says fellows from the Cato Institute)…​ HERE 

COMPASS appears to be aimed at vertically integrating in order to control its supply chain from synthesis through therapy. Such control would allow it to deny access to other organizations through a variety of means. In fact, this has already occurred, as COMPASS signed an exclusivity deal with Onyx Pharmaceuticals, thereby blocking Usona (a non-profit company looking to develop psychedelic medicines) from using Onyx to manufacture Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) psilocybinunheard of tactics in psychedelic research. There is no such thing as an “apolitical” approach to the medicalization of psychedelics; this work carries numerous sociopolitical implications. Regrettably, many researchers in this field appear to consider such implications “beyond the scope of their research,” despite the potentially massive social impacts. To those researchers, I would pose a simple question, “Were the sociopolitical implications of the atomic bomb beyond the scope of the researchers who were involved in the Manhattan Project? If so, why did those researchers repeatedly take political stances about the development and use of that new, awe-inspiring technology?” 

In a world on the edge of a precipice [in 1939], with madness as the backdrop of the ages, [Richard Evan Shultes, father of modern western ethnobotany] found himself about the enter the mountains of Oaxaca to search to search for the long lost teonanacatl [magic mushrooms] with an ardent Nazi as a companion…  HERE

Robust discourse (and action) is needed with regards to the non-medical ramifications of medicalization, lest we find ourselves looking back and lamenting the “unforeseeable” effects a few decades from now.  Peter Thiel is one of COMPASS’ notable investors. Thiel, who decried women voting, the existence of social safety nets, and democracy. Thiel, who’s behind the Palantir surveillance software; technology used to target countless immigrants and drug users in New Orleans*.  Concerning Palantir, Jim Craig, the director of the Louisiana office of the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center.  “It’s especially disturbing that this level of intrusive research into the lives of ordinary residents is kept virtually a secret, ”It’s almost as if New Orleans were contracting its own version of the NSA to conduct 24/7 surveillance of the lives of its people,” Craig said. Authorities, he believes, have kept the program under wraps because it would elicit widespread outrage. 

Original Article (Chacruna):
The Dire Need for Systemic Critique within the Psychedelic Community and New Orleans Predictive Policing
Artwork Fair Use: Public Domain

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