intro’d to Harvey here:
Bonnie Stewart (@bonstewart) tweeted at 6:50 AM – 19 Jan 2017 :
organized, accessible activities for teens/young adults as prevention against substance abuse: #PEI, can we DO this?https://t.co/TObxao5MuS (http://twitter.com/bonstewart/status/822078829241962497?s=17)
do it for all/globe.. call it rat park
Gudberg Jónsson, a local psychologist, and Harvey Milkman, an American psychology professor who teaches for part of the year at Reykjavik University
The way the country has achieved this turnaround has been both radical and evidence-based, but it has relied a lot on what might be termed *enforced common sense.
Milkman’s doctoral dissertation concluded that people would choose either heroin or amphetamines depending on how they liked to deal with stress.
At Metropolitan State College of Denver, Milkman was instrumental in developing the idea that people were getting addicted to changes in brain chemistry.
This idea spawned another: “Why not orchestrate a social movement around natural highs: around people getting high on their own brain chemistry – because it seems obvious to me that *people want to change their consciousness – without the deleterious effects of drugs?”
*if realized it was an option.. would we simply want to change our consciousness.. or the environment..?.. hari present in society law
By 1992, his team in Denver had won a $1.2 million government grant to form Project Self-Discovery, which offered teenagers natural-high alternatives to drugs and crime.
“We didn’t say to them, you’re coming in for treatment. We said, we’ll teach you anything you want to learn: music, dance, hip hop, art, martial arts.” The idea was that these different classes could provide a variety of alterations in the kids’ brain chemistry, and *give them what they needed to cope better with life: some might crave an experience that could help reduce anxiety, others may be after a rush.
perhaps.. all just craving connection.. perhaps 2 needs/desires/cravings..
*sounds more reactive than preventative..
In 1991, Milkman was invited to Iceland to talk about this work, his findings and ideas. He became a consultant to the first residential drug treatment centre for adolescents in Iceland, in a town called Tindar. “It was designed around the *idea of giving kids better things to do,” he explains.
imagine.. not just kids.. and not just better things to do.. rather.. all of us.. and.. to do the thing we can’t not do..gershenfeld sel
Using the survey data and insights from research including Milkman’s, a new national plan was gradually introduced. It was called Youth in Iceland.
Laws were changed. It became illegal to buy tobacco under the age of 18 and alcohol under the age of 20, and tobacco and alcohol advertising was banned.
A law was also passed prohibiting children aged between 13 and 16 from being outside after 10pm in winter and midnight in summer. It’s still in effect today.
perhaps if wasn’t a partial experiment .. wouldn’t need laws
State funding was increased for organised sport,
Youth in Europe, which Jón heads, began in 2006 after the already-remarkable Icelandic data was presented at a European Cities Against Drugs
“We always say that, like vegetables, information has to be fresh,” says Jón. “If you bring these findings a year later, people would say, Oh, this was a long time ago and maybe things have changed…
At the moment, participation in Youth in Europe is a *haphazard affair, and the team in Iceland is small. Jón would like to see a centralised body with its own dedicated funding to focus on the expansion of Youth in Europe. “Even though we have been doing this for ten years, it is not our full, main job. We would like somebody to copy this and maintain it all over Europe,” he says. “And why only Europe?”
Three hundred and twenty-five million people versus 330,000. Thirty-three thousand gangs versus virtually none. Around 1.3 million homeless young people versus a handful.
Clearly, the US has challenges that Iceland does not. But the data from other parts of Europe, including cities such as Bucharest with major social problems and relative poverty, shows that the Icelandic model can work in very different cultures
Milkman has learned the hard way that even widely applauded, gold-standard youth programmes aren’t always expanded, or even sustained. “With Project Self-Discovery, it seemed like we had the best programme in the world,” he says. “I was invited to the White House twice. It won national awards. I was thinking: this will be replicated in every town and village. But it wasn’t.”
He thinks that is because you can’t prescribe a generic model to every community because they don’t all have the same resources.
Public wariness and an unwillingness to engage will be challenges wherever the Icelandic methods are proposed, thinks Milkman, and go to the heart of the balance of responsibility between states and citizens. “*How much control do you want the government to have over what happens with your kids? Is this too much of the government meddling in how people live their lives?”
2010 – 17 clips on his book craving for ecstasy and natural highs
worked for 10 yrs w youth.. offering healthy alt’s
defn… behavior characterized by compulsion.. loss of control.. and continuation despite harmful consequences.. so doesn’t really matter (what you’re addicted to).. if lose control over autonomy.. freedom of movement in society…
nicotene.. the world’s anti depressent.. 1/3 of world on it
human nature ness
people not getting addicted to drugs.. what they’re really getting addicted to is changes in their brain chemistry.. mind produces own brain chemicals.. how to help people change brain chemistry .. toward benefit in society.. via natural brain chemicals..
is there ways of educating society to find healthy means of feeling good… orchestrating around brain chem in such a way that they have a sense of fulfillment and well being w/o neg sides of compulsive pleasure seeking
how.. systematic way to help people feel good