Plus Three

Plus Three

Plus Three attempts to make sense of the complex connections between drugs, science, capitalism, policy, and culture. The podcast is co-hosted by Psymposia co-founder Brian Normand, psychedelics researcher Nese Devenot, evolutionary ecologist Brian Pace, and underground researcher David Nickles. Subscribe and listen today on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, Stitcher, Radio Public, Deezer, RSS, or psymposia.com

American Trip: Ido Hartogsohn

Dr. Ido Hartoghson joins the show to talk about the ideas in his new book, American Trip: Set, Setting, and the Psychedelic Experience in the Twentieth Century  Acknowledging psychedelics as non-specific amplifiers of consciousness, we discuss different historical (and present) paradigms of use in order to interrogate the role of psychedelics within our culture. As we find ourselves staring down a number of existential questions, we must ask ourselves, "What do we hope to achieve through our personal and cultural exposure to psychedelics?”

The LSD Silo Bust (Everything You Wanted to Know and a Few Things You Didn’t)

In response to the unexpected early release of William Leonard Pickard from prison, we discuss some of the characters and stories surrounding the case. Having served twenty years of a double life sentence for conspiracy to manufacture, distribute, and dispense LSD— charges which he disputes— Pickard has never spoken publicly about the specifics of his case, and some of the drug-media coverage of this story has evidenced glaring omissions. Using court documents, lesser-known first-person accounts, and excerpts from Pickard's book, The Rose of Paracelsus: On Secrets & Sacraments, we call attention to some of the murkier aspects of this story in an attempt to paint a fuller picture of what is, perhaps, the most notorious psychedelic story of the 21st century.

MDMA, PTSD, ACAB

In this episode, we explore the implications of MAPS’ main political strategy: demonstrating affinity for and utility to the police, the military, the far right, and individuals who have repeatedly upheld violent white supremacism. Unpacking a recent article by David Nickles, we examine the “ends justifies the means” logic that has become pervasive in psychedelic research.

Seizing the Doors of Perception

In this episode, we unpack some of the characters and dynamics of the psychedelic “arm” of the Intellectual Dark Web. We use Neşe Devenot’s recently released video on Jamie Wheal, Lucian Tarnowski, and other affiliates of the Rebel Wisdom media platform to explore questions of power, class, and ahistorical theories of social change. Just how much sense do these self-labelled "sensemakers" make?

Psychedelic Capitalists Part 2: Pandemic Profiteers and Non-Cooperative Actors

Brian, Dave, and Russell continue their conversation about neoliberals in psychedelia, including companies using the coronavirus pandemic to promote psychedelics for mental health. They also deconstruct non-profit vs. for-profit rhetoric and propose more pragmatic frameworks for examining the implications (and material realities) of psychedelic corporations and their operating structures, such as cooperative vs. non-cooperative.

Psychedelic Capitalists: Psilocybin and Gold and Lithium, oh my!

Brian and Dave are joined by Psymposia writer Russell Hausfeld to discuss capitalist logic in psychedelia, the principles of open science, and the increasing eagerness of extractive industry players (including gold and lithium mining outfits and traders) looking to capitalize on psychedelics.

Psychedelics, Sex, Power, Silence

In this episode, Lily Kay Ross joins us to discuss Olivia Goldhill’s story, “Psychedelic therapy has a sexual abuse problem.” Ross recently completed her doctorate studying social responses to sexual violence. She brings both her personal experience with sexual violence and poor community responses in psychedelic spaces and her academic insights to bear on the myriad of questions highlighted by Goldhill’s reporting.

Douglas Rushkoff on the Parallels Between Psychedelic and Digital Mainstreaming

Plus Three is joined by author and host of the Team Human podcast, Douglas Rushkoff, to discuss some of the parallel trajectories between psychedelic and digital mainstreaming. Will COVID-19 be to psychedelics as 9/11 was to surveillance capitalism? September 11th became the excuse to implement a surveillance state and surrender digital technologies to corporations. Will we see psychedelic medicines become the go-to recovery option for COVID-related mental health fallout? We also explore what a true psychedelic renaissance might look like.

Dear Psychedelic Researchers

On the one hand, psychedelics hold promise for personal healing and transformative individual change, and when psychedelics are eventually accepted by mainstream medicine, they will likely impact mental health outcomes for the better. But the broken systems highlighted by the coronavirus pandemic offer insight into why mental health has reached epidemic proportions in the first place.

Amidst Pandemic, Psychedelic Investor Christan Angermayer Can’t Imagine Life Beyond Capitalism

As the coronavirus pandemic rages on, Christian Angermayer, the world’s largest psychedelic pharmaceutical investor and founder of ATAI Life Sciences, calls to sacrifice public health for the sake of “the economy.”