AirTalk for June 9, 2010

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Yesterday voters across California – some of them anyway – decided on state ballot measures and chose who gets to run in the November election. Meg Whitman won the Republican nomination to face Jerry Brown for governor, while Carly Fiorina claimed the party's nod in the U.S. Senate race against incumbent Democrat Barbara Boxer. California voters also approved Proposition 14, which creates an open primary system. Nationally, Arkansas Democrat Blanche Lincoln withstood a party challenge for her Senate seat, and in Nevada the Tea Party-backed Sharron Angle will take on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in the fall. Larry Mantle looks at what yesterday's results mean for November.
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Some people just can’t stop gambling: no matter how much they lose, the rush of adrenaline keeps them coming back for more. Online gambling, although technically illegal, just gives these stricken people another route for feeding their habit. Now Congress is considering another approach: legalize it, tax it, monitor it, and, just maybe, use some of the funds to help reform compulsive gamblers. But will this really help the situation, or just make it easier for more people to fall into the trap of compulsive gambling?
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Is psychiatry in crisis?

As medicines for mental illness have become more varied and effective, fewer patients are spending time on the psychiatrist’s couch. Is this a good thing, or bad? According to Dr. Daniel Carlat it’s a troubling sign, and psychiatrists themselves are to blame. Carlat believes that psychiatrists have become pill-pushers for the pharmaceutical industry, overprescribing medications and abandoning the more challenging and time-consuming practice of talk therapy. But not all psychiatrists agree, noting that advances in the treatment of mental illness have spared millions from suffering. Larry Mantle talks with Daniel Carlat and with Listening to Prozac, author Peter D. Kramer about the present state of psychiatry.
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