Sunday, June 5, 2011

Another Reason Why We Need to Beware of Imitations

This shocker of a story appeared in the Colorado Springs Gazette today:

Edwin Shockney’s 2009 book “Delusional Entitlement Disorder” describes people who increasingly expect quick payoffs without hard work and “believe that standards, rules and laws do not apply to them.”

He could be describing himself.

Shockney says he has a master’s degree in counseling and a doctorate in psychology, which give him the expertise to diagnose patients, advise government agencies and testify in almost 150 local court cases.

In reality, the Colorado Springs man quit at least three colleges. He has no bachelor’s degree and no master’s. And his doctorate came from a defunct California seminary based in a strip mall.

But through an ever-evolving string of embellishments and outright lies, Shockney has hoodwinked the Colorado professional counselors oversight board, the Catholic Church, local lawyers, police, a large defense contractor and countless patients for more than a decade.

He has gotten away with it despite repeated complaints to authorities.

And his deceptions could have serious repercussions because his court testimony has influenced dozens of child custody and criminal cases that may now warrant new trials....

EDITORIAL COMMENT: The bottom line is that psychotherapy offer a great deal of scope for quacks who take advantage of highly vulnerable people. Since they are likely to come up with strange and unsound advice with no scientific basis, they can hurt a lot of patients before the authorities yank their chain and either/or strip them of their licenses or initiate criminal proceedings.

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